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Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Brazilian suppliers need partnerships to survive

by Maira Nascimento from AutoData Seminar - New Automotive Revolution
The global sharing of platforms or vehicle architecture will increasingly require dedication from the suppliers, since it represents a way for the vehicle manufacturers to reduce development and production costs. Given this scenario, which should last throughout the years, Brazilian automotive parts companies need to find partnerships and alliances in order to keep up with demand from its customers. The analysis above was made by Pedro Manuchakian, formerly Vice President of product engineering at General Motors South America who retired earlier this year and is now a consultant in the area, who was one of the speakers at the AutoData Seminar - New Automotive Revolution that took place on Monday, 25, in São Paulo.
The development of global vehicle projects require, from the beginning, the participation of suppliers who have global quality and production capacity, said Manuchakian during his presentation.
In a message directed to the holy owned Brazilian companies that operate on the in the domestic market, the consultant stated, "If they do not change their direction, the global or internationally active competitors will take the lead." Manuchakian suggested that these entrepreneurs should search for companies with which they can partner with, not only in development, but also in production.
"For example, it could be an agreement that would guarantee a volume of production in Brazil to meet local demand, as well as the supply to other facilities around the world from the partners."
Manuchakian believes the supplier that manages to overcome these boundaries will be able to build a long-term relationship with the vehicle manufacturers.
The longtime GM former executive also defended, during his presentation, the sharing of vehicle architectures, not only for models of the same brand, but also for various brands, which is a trend that should end your for a long time, given the related cost reduction advantages. "The sharing of components is also extremely significant within this process since it reduces costs, the complexity of manufacturing, and favors the application of new technologies in a bigger scale."
Manuchakian believes that vehicle manufacturers will reduce the current number of platforms under production throughout the next years, "since it is too high," which should cause new vehicle generations to be re-dimensioned.
In terms of fuel, the consultant does not believe there will be any drastic changes in the near term. "The industry will have to find new solutions for the Otto cycle because other solutions, such as the hydrogen fuel-cell, or even electric engines, still offer high costs that will be passed along to the prices of the vehicles," something that the markets, especially the emerging ones, would not absorb.

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