Day: July 7, 2022

Car News

Texas-Made Tesla Model Y 4680 Compared With Fremont-Made

Now that Tesla has begun delivering Model Y EVs from its new factory in Texas, people are understandably curious to see how the Austin-made electric crossover compares with its Fremont-made counterpart.

One of the latest videos on this topic comes from YouTube influencer Gjeebs, who put side by side a Texas-made Model Y Standard Range with the structural battery pack and 4680 cells, a California-made Model Y Long Range with the regular battery and 2170 cells and his own Model Y, which is also made in Fremont.

At first sight, these Model Ys look identical, but upon closer scrutiny, some interesting differences come to light. Starting with the thing most people probably want to hear about, the build quality is superior to the Model Y made in California, according to Gjeebs, with great fit and finish, correct panel gaps and very nice paint.

That said, those with a keen eye for details will notice how the rear door window trim juts out a little bit where it meets the window trim from the rear fender, although that seems to be a universal thing on Model Ys, regardless of where they are made.

Moving on to the interior, the Texas-made Model Y is well put together and comes with a factory-installed cargo cover, unlike existing Fremont-made Model Ys which didn’t use to have this part at all. Other things that are different (and better) include the Alcantara lining on the door panels, magnetic cover for the center console storage area, and high-quality black seats that are apparently softer than the white seats in older Model Ys. 

Driving the Model Y 4680, the reviewer also notices that the suspension is nicely set up and offers good ride quality, which he says is partly due to the 19-inch wheels. The acceleration,

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Car Industry

How supply-chain turmoil is remaking the car industry

If you want to see how technology and deglobalisation are changing the global economy, there are few better places to look than the car industry. Not only is it going through an epochal shift: away from the internal-combustion engine (ice) and towards electric vehicles (evs). Automobiles are also becoming, in effect, computers on wheels, running as much on processing power as the horse variety. And the pandemic has wreaked havoc on car companies’ complex global supply chains, most prominently of semiconductors. As carmakers electrify, computerise and refashion their supply chains for the new reality, the giant sector is undergoing the greatest transformation in decades.

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Having outsourced much of the manufacturing process in the past half-century to focus on design, supplier management and parts assembly, car firms want greater control over their value chain—from the metals that go into ev batteries to the software those evs run on and the shops in which they are sold. And they want to turn their ev arms into tech startups.

In both respects, control and startupiness, Big Auto wants to be more like Tesla, the world’s undisputed ev champion. As with earlier examples of tailgating a rival that tries something that works, from Ford’s moving assembly line or Toyota’s just-in-time manufacturing, Teslafication of the car business will prove disruptive.

Doing everything under one roof is an idea both old and new. Tesla’s industrial system is at first glance an embrace of Silicon Valley’s “full stack”—internalising all aspects of production, and therefore all the profits. Elon Musk, Tesla’s opinionated boss, once claimed that his company was

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Auto News

Q2 U.S. auto sales: GM takes back sales crown

Dealer inventory stands at 35 days on average, according to Cox, but some brands are faring better than others.

For example, all four of GM’s brands have a higher-than-average days’ supply, helping the automaker win the sales race last quarter. Toyota’s supply is one of the lowest, around 20 days.

“They’re losing some ground this quarter, and it seems likely that their tight supply situation is having a much bigger impact than before,” Charlie Chesbrough, senior economist at Cox Automotive, told reporters last week.

Coinciding with its return to the top of the U.S. market, GM plans to hold 95,000 vehicles awaiting parts. The automaker won’t allow dealers to sell those vehicles — or any other vehicle — before arriving at the store, a change in policy that went into effect July 1 after customers who bought vehicles before taking delivery were required to start their payments potentially months before seeing the vehicle.

Consumers are facing inflationary pressure and near-record fuel prices. But if the U.S. economy enters a recession, the auto industry is unlikely to take a significant hit, analysts say.

“Sales are already at recessionary levels, so our vehicle market would be falling off of a curve rather than falling off of a cliff like in a normal recession,” Chesbrough said.

Demand remains high as many consumers wait months for their vehicles. About 40 percent of inventory is turning within five days of arriving at dealerships, according to J.D. Power.

Production could improve between September and November, said Tyson Jominy, J.D. Power’s vice president of data and analytics. Still, “we won’t see an improvement in inventory even as we expect an improvement in production [because of] pent-up demand, consumers waiting for their vehicle,” Jominy said. “Vehicles will continue to turn it at these record paces that we’ve been

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