The large amount of data collected is used to improve productivity by increasing vehicle and machine uptime, reducing emissions and noise, as well as improving traffic and site safety.
“The connected solutions bring increased vehicle and construction equipment uptime for our customers, better safety for drivers, operators and other road users – and of course – less emissions of carbon dioxide. The first million connected assets is only the start, we are committed to remain a leader in this field,” says Martin Lundstedt, President and CEO of the Volvo Group.
At today’s handover ceremony of four excavators to the Danish customer GSV Materieludlejning, the critical number of 1 million connected customer assets was exceeded.
“This is a significant moment for the Volvo Group and we are happy to deliver machines that are not only robust and up for the job, but also come with connected solutions to make the customer’s everyday work easier,” said Jens Ejsing, Managing Director of Volvo Construction Equipment Denmark as he handed over the keys to Dan O. Vorsholt, CEO of GSV Materieludlejning.
As more and more people move into cities, the needs for better infrastructure as well as transportation of both people and goods are growing.
“The Volvo Group is a pioneer in connected vehicles and we use the knowledge and insights we get from connectivity in strategic alliances with customers and other partners to speed up the innovation cycle,” says Lars Stenqvist, Chief Technology Officer at the Volvo Group.
Volvo Group uses data from connected vehicles and construction equipment to develop solutions that provide real value to the customer as well as to the society at large.
For example, connected Volvo buses use Zone Management to let the vehicle itself use downloaded data to comply with local traffic restrictions such as emission zones, noise zones and areas with speed limits.
For owners of construction equipment, trucks and buses uptime is vital. Thanks to the collected data, wear on crucial parts can be predicted, services planned and spare parts ordered in advance – all reducing downtime for the owner, thus leading to increased productivity. For example, this is what Renault Trucks offers with its new Excellence Predict offer.
The Volvo Connect system combines all digital and connected services for Volvo’s truck customers into one single interface, making the everyday trucking operations run smoothly.
In construction equipment, the fleet management system CareTrack allows customers and dealers to monitor productivity data.
Finally, for Swedish customer NCC, a weight control solution has been developed, allowing the construction equipment operator and the truck driver to monitor the load capacity in real time. The result is a transport solution with higher productivity and lower environmental impact.
“Connectivity is transforming the transportation industry. Insights from gathered data can be turned into value for our customers and society as a whole and make transportation more productive, more sustainable and safer”, says Anna Westerberg, Senior Vice President at Volvo Group Connected Solutions.
The proposed new business would clear the way for Volvo Cars to focus on the development of its all-electric range of premium cars. Volvo Cars is building an entirely electrified product range, as part of the company’s ambition to put sustainability at the core of its operations. By the middle of the next decade it expects half its global sales to be fully electric and the other half hybrid, supplied by the new unit.
For Geely, the planned new entity means technologically-advanced and efficient combustion engines and hybrid powertrains would be available to Geely Auto, Proton, Lotus, LEVC and LYNK & CO. The planned new stand-alone business can also supply third party manufacturers, providing possible growth opportunities.
The planned new business would represent a significant industrial collaboration between Volvo Cars and Geely with substantial operational, industrial and financial synergies.
The proposed new business is intended to be an attractive employer for approximately 3,000 employees from Volvo Cars and around 5,000 employees from Geely’s combustion engine operations including research and development, procurement, manufacturing, IT and finance functions. No reductions in the workforce are anticipated.
Both Volvo Cars and Geely are in the process of carving out their ICE operations into new units within their respective organisations, as a first step towards a merger of the two into a combined new stand-alone business.
Volvo Cars believes the electrification of the automotive industry will be a gradual process, meaning there will be significant ongoing demand for efficient hybrid powertrains alongside fully-electric offerings.
“Hybrid cars need the best internal combustion engines. This new unit will have the resources, scale and expertise to develop these powertrains cost efficiently,” said Håkan Samuelsson, Volvo Cars’ president and chief executive.
The detailed plans of the new business are under development and subject to union negotiations as well as board and relevant authority approvals.
Details are as follows:
Safety recall for select 2019 Ford F-Series Super Duty vehicles
Ford is issuing a safety recall for select 2019 Ford F-Series Super Duty vehicles. On affected vehicles, the electronically locking rear-axle assembly may have a passenger-side axle shaft manufactured with steel that does not meet Ford’s specifications. A passenger-side rear axle shaft manufactured with material not to Ford’s specifications may fracture. A fractured passenger-side axle shaft could result in a loss of motive power while driving in two-wheel drive, and the inability to hold the park function. If the parking brake is not applied, this could result in unintended vehicle movement, increasing the risk of crash or injury.
Ford is not aware of any reports of accident or injury related to this condition.
This action affects 28,579 vehicles in the United States and federal territories, 4,316 in Canada and 73 in Mexico.
Affected vehicles were built at Kentucky Truck Plant and Ohio Assembly Plant, May 21 - July 26, 2019.
Dealers will inspect the passenger-side rear axle shaft; shafts with a suspect batch code will be replaced. Owners are advised to apply the parking brake whenever the vehicle is parked until the service fix is completed. The Ford reference number for this recall is 19S31.
Safety recall for select 2020 Ford Explorer vehicles for an improperly secured wiring harness
Ford is issuing a safety recall for select 2020 Ford Explorer vehicles with 2.3-litre and 3.3-litre gas (petrol) engines. In affected vehicles, the wiring harness is not properly secured and may contact the air-conditioning pulley, resulting in a damaged wiring harness or damaged air-conditioning drive belt. Over time, contact with the air-conditioning pulley may rub through the wiring harness insulation, creating the potential for contact with the unfused B+ circuit, resulting in a short circuit and possible fire.
Ford is not aware of any reports of accidents, injuries or fires related to this condition.
This action affects 10,655 vehicles in the United States. The majority of affected vehicles are in dealer inventory. The issue will be remedied prior to delivery to customers.
Affected vehicles were built at Chicago Assembly Plant, May 28 - July 18, 2019.
Dealers will secure the wiring harness and repair any damage, if present. The Ford reference number for this recall is 19S32.
Safety compliance recall 19C07 amended to include select 2020 Ford Escape vehicles
Ford is issuing an amendment to safety compliance recall 19C07 announced Aug. 30, 2019, to include select 2020 Ford Escape vehicles and expand the build date range of other affected vehicles. The amendment includes approximately 9,350 Escape vehicles in North America built April 3, 2019, to Sept. 21, 2019 at Louisville Assembly Plant. The majority of vehicles are in dealer inventory and this issue will be remedied prior to customer delivery”
Mahindra and Ford will form a joint venture, with Mahindra owning a 51% controlling stake and Ford owning a 49% stake. Ford will transfer its India operations to the joint venture, including its personnel and assembly plants in Chennai and Sanand. Ford will retain the Ford engine plant operations in Sanand as well as the Global Business Services unit, Ford Credit and Ford Smart Mobility.
The joint venture is the next step in the strategic alliance forged between Ford and Mahindra in September 2017 and is expected to be operational by mid-2020, subject to regulatory approvals. The joint venture will be operationally managed by Mahindra, and its governance will be equally composed of representatives of Mahindra and Ford.
The joint venture will be responsible for growing the Ford brand in India and exporting its products to Ford entities globally. Ford will continue to own the Ford brand, and its branded vehicles will be distributed through the current Ford India dealer network. Mahindra will continue to own the Mahindra brand and operate its own independent dealer network in India.
“Mahindra and Ford coming together is a testament to the long history of cooperation and mutual respect between the two companies. Our combined strengths – Mahindra’s expertise in value-focused engineering and its successful operating model, and Ford’s technical expertise, global reach and access to future technology – are a potent recipe for success. At its core, the partnership will be driven by the shared values of both companies, which are focused on caring for our customers, associates and our communities,” said Anand Mahindra, chairman, Mahindra Group.
“At Ford, our purpose for 116 years has always been to drive human progress, and that won’t change. But to continue to do that, we need to evolve with new and faster ways of not only delighting our customers around the world but also solving their very different needs. Strong alliances like this play a crucial role in assuring we continue to achieve our vision while at the same time staying competitive and delivering value to our global stakeholders,” said Jim Hackett, Ford president and CEO.
The joint venture expects to introduce three new utility vehicles under the Ford brand, beginning with a new midsize sports utility vehicle that will have a common Mahindra product platform and powertrain.
Another area of focus for the joint venture will be electric vehicles. Ford and Mahindra will collaborate to develop vehicles to support the growth of sustainable mobility across emerging markets.
Driving greater economies of scale across the automotive value chain including sourcing, product development and access to relevant technologies, the joint venture is expected to achieve enhanced efficiencies to strengthen the Ford brand in India. In addition, the joint venture will be a catalyst for growth for the Ford and Mahindra brands in emerging markets, which are growing at double the rate of the global industry.
The joint venture will use the Ford brand distribution network in emerging markets to extend support for export of Mahindra products, in addition to Ford branded vehicles. Exports today form about 7 percent of Mahindra’s auto business revenues and its products are exported to South Africa, Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Chile, among other nations and areas.
“Emerging economies including India are expected to account for one in three future vehicle sales,” said Dr. Pawan Goenka, managing director, Mahindra & Mahindra Limited. “The joint venture will have a distinct product portfolio with shared platforms and powertrains, the newest technology, high quality and engineering standards from both Mahindra and Ford, at optimized costs. This winning combination will enable the joint venture to successfully position its vehicles in India, as well as unlock the potential of other highly competitive emerging markets”.
“The creation of this joint venture is a pivotal moment in both our companies’ histories. Strong alliances such as this play a crucial role for Ford to compete profitably in the high-volume, affordable vehicle segments so popular with our diverse customer base. By combining our respective talents, we will offer more vehicles to more customers in more places than ever before and deliver profitable growth to both Ford and Mahindra,” said Jim Farley, president of Ford New Businesses, Technology & Strategy.
Ford’s newly established International Markets Group (IMG) business unit will play a key role in the process. IMG brings together 100 high-potential, emerged and emerging markets including India Australia, ASEAN, Middle East, Africa and Russia. In addition to the established Ford Ranger and U.S. import businesses in IMG, the formation of this joint venture will add to IMG’s portfolio vehicles specifically tailored for emerging markets, and it places India very much at the centre of Ford’s strategy for IMG.
The Techstars Detroit class of 2019 unveiling updated businesses today at Demo Day are:
Airspace Link, Detroit, MI – FAA-certified enterprise SaaS platform managing local government airspace for drones.
Alpha Drive, New York, NY – Platform-as-a-Service that tests and validates autonomous systems for mobility providers, insurers, and regulators.
Le Car, Novi, MI – A personalized recommendation tool that simplifies car shopping decisions developed by journalists.
Octane, Vernon Hills, IL – Mobile platform that helps car enthusiasts go on epic car adventures.
PPAP Manager, Chihuahua, Mexico - A cloud-based platform that streamlines the Parts Validation Process in the manufacturing industry.
Ruksack, Toronto, Canada – Travel advice marketplace that enables location-focused influencers to create authentic trips for travelers.
Soundtrack AI, Tel Aviv, Israel - A SaaS platform that uses acoustics to monitor mechanical systems for industrial companies.
Teporto Smart Shuttles, Tel Aviv, Israel - Cloud-based commuting solution that manages shuttles with adaptive routes for employers and cities.
Unlimited, Barcelona, Spain - Modular electric powertrain system for bikes, scooters, and beyond.
Zown, Toronto, Canada - Fixing bad pick-ups one pin at a time.
Ford was the first company to support Techstars Detroit and over the last five years has assisted the 54 startups that have gone through this program. Ford is dedicated to supporting entrepreneurs who are building technologies that are changing the way we move people and goods.
In collaboration with Ford since 2015, Techstars Detroit has helped founders around the world succeed in building transformational businesses across mobility, automotive, transportation, logistics, city infrastructure, manufacturing, IoT, and travel industries.
Ford congratulates the Techstars Detroit class of 2019!
Board member for production and logistics Andreas Tostmann commented on the interim review with 500 leading managers at an international conference: "The figures demonstrate that our strategy is working. In 2019, our productivity will have improved by more than 6%. And for the first time since 2013, we lowered the costs per vehicle in production. The workforce did an extraordinary great job here and I thank them very much for their achievements. We have demonstrated team spirit, and with our new models we managed strong and smooth starts of production. With great competence, our colleagues consistently contribute to increasing production efficiency and productivity. We will continue along our chosen path. Especially in a time of global economic uncertainties, we are well advised to make ourselves crisis-proof. To do what is in our hands so we are prepared for what is not in our hands."
In total, the production facility costs of the Volkswagen brand amount to around 10 billion euros. Between 2019 to 2023, production is contributing €2 billion ($2.1 billion) to the financial result by reducing personnel costs, procurement incidentals and overhead. In 2019, around €500 million will be contributed.
The company is striving to increase productivity across all sites by 30% by 2025. Of particular importance to Volkswagen is to bring production facilities with very different conditions all over the world to common production standards. A centralised process ensures that ideas and improvements in one location are quickly and bindingly transferred to other plants. At present, 220 such measures are being implemented. These range from the globally standardized automated surface inspection in the paint shop to the reduced complexity of bodywork press tools and modular special containers that can be used independent of the model.
Enforcing common standards, the new digital production platform developed with Amazon Web Services and Siemens will also help standardise the different IT systems of the individual plants. For example, maintenance requirements of production machinery can be uniformly controlled as part of predictive maintenance. Board member for production Dr. Tostmann explained: "In a large company like Volkswagen, we have to use economies of scale much more consistently. Improvements must be implemented quickly everywhere, and new systems must be developed only once."
On top, the production group at Volkswagen has set itself a comprehensive decarbonization goal. As an intermediate step, the CO2 emissions of the plants are to be reduced by 50% by 2025 compared to 2015. The figures from 2015 to the first half of 2019 demonstrate that the company is well on track. CO2 emissions per vehicle produced were reduced by 22%.