The US exported more vehicles than ever in 2014, and about half of those went to Canada and Mexico. The lingering effects of the financial crisis made the US a cheap place to build, and a growing global demand for crossovers made the world want our cars. It might not last, though.
Subaru has decided not to open a joint venture factory in China with Chery, even if the Chinese government gave it permission. The Japanese brand looked at the numbers and decided that it would have to double its sales just to maintain the same profits from exporting from Japan. Growth in the Chinese market may also be slowing.
Take a tour of the Porsche 911 engine factory in Zuffenhausen, Germany, as the company's flat-six mills are made in this video. The place is hypnotic in its efficiency to watch each part slowly come together to create these famously fantastic mills. Hardly any noise rises above the hum of the assembly line.
After half a century and some 14 million units built, Ford closes one of its largest plants, located in the Belgian city of Genk, with manufacturing of the Mondeo, S-Max and Galaxy shifting to Valencia instead.
Plants close all the time, but not in Germany. In fact, according to the latest report from TheDetroitBureau.com, there hasn't been an automotive assembly plant closed in Germany since the end of World War II – but one has closed now.
Michelin has been showing off its idea of combining the wheel and tire into a single component as far back as 2005. Dubbed the Tweel, the novel design replaced standard pneumatic tires and metal wheels with deforming spokes around a hub. While uses of the Tweel are still limited, the tech is about to get a big upgrade in production with Michelin opening a dedicated factory to build them in Piedmont, SC, on November 20.
Looking forward to getting your mitts on a new Land Rover Discovery Sport? Well you should, because it promises to be a markedly better product than the Freelander/LR2 it replaces. Just don't assume it will necessarily be built in the UK, as just about every Land Rover has in the company's 66-year history.
The heads of Jaguar Land Rover are having a busy couple of weeks opening factories. Just days after inaugurating the company's first overseas plant in China, the automaker's new Engine Manufacturing Center in the UK is being inaugurated, as well. The plant near Wolverhampton, England, marks the first time in decades that JLR is building its own powerplants in-house. Further signaling the importance of this launch for the business, Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip were on hand and even tweete
Google Street View has emerged as a great tool for checking out locations along your driving route, and even scoping out places you don't have a chance to go yourself. And that includes some great automotive installations. The online tool has taken us inside museums, race tracks and factories around the world, but while it has not to date allowed us virtual access to a European automotive factory, Fiat is out to correct that wrong by letting the Street View team inside Officine Abarth.
After Paying People Not To Work, The Tide Has Turned
The Michigan battery plant known for paying its workers to do nothing has turned things around and is now hiring more workers, specifically to do something. South Korea-based LG Chem, which runs the factory to supply the Chevrolet Volt extended-range plug-in vehicle with its lithium-ion batteries, held a job fair recently to bring on 40 new employees in order to meet higher battery demand, according to WZZM, the ABC affiliate for Grand Rapids, MI.
Google is no stranger to showing off some of the most interesting automotive destinations in the world, like the museums for Lamborghini and Ducati, or even a Tesla showroom. However, it's taking that technology even further with a new, in-depth look of the Sterling Heights Assembly Plant where the Chrysler 200 is made. Unlike these earlier online excursions, the new Chrysler factory tour is a fully guided experience that includes several 360-degree videos explaining many parts of the production
Elio Motors is taking its green-is-good mentality to its factory equipment. The company, which is planning to make super-light three-wheeled vehicles that get 84 miles per gallon, will finally start making trikes next year. The plan is to sell off extra equipment from an old General Motors factory to do so.