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North American Barometer: 2023 A New Dawn or More of the Same?

With supply-chain disruptions starting to stabilize, and available production getting closer to capacity, the economy could be the biggest obstacle to growth in 2023. However, how automakers ultimately react to the underlying trends tied to the pandemic, and subsequent parts shortages, remains unclear. Inventory is rising but production still is weighted toward high-margin vehicles, a dynamic that continues to elevate retail prices while keeping lower income buyers out of the market. Fleet customers still are waiting for enough capacity to be freed up to start filling their pent-up demand, which could act as a buffer to any weakening in the retail sector. Those are some of the trends and questions Haig Stoddard will address in his outlook for 2023 for the North American market.

Market Analysis

Propulsion Wars: Internal-Combustion vs. Electrification and the Battle for Powertrain Supremacy

Wards Editor-in-Chief Bob Gritzinger breaks down the attributes of nominees and winners in the 2022 Wards 10 Best Engines & Propulsion Systems competition, with a look at how the 28th annual review reflects broader trends in automotive powertrain development. Electrification is on the rise, but engineers also are focused on wringing the last bits of performance and efficiency from internal-combustion engines.


Mexico November LV Sales Show Further Gain

Despite earlier indications that Mexican consumers were about to ease up on durable-goods purchases, they continued flocking to automotive showrooms in November, driving away with 95,445 new light vehicles. That was more than both the prior month and year-ago. Light-vehicle sales in January-November reached 964,036 units, an increase of 5.2% from like-2021’s 915,950. 

Market Analysis

Ambarella Announces Central Processing for Oculii 4D Imaging Radar Data

Ambarella’s Oculii central processor combines raw data from multiple sensor types, including cameras, lidars, ultrasonics and the company’s own 4D radars to create dense point clouds over a long detection range for Level 2+ ADAS systems to Level 5 AVs.

Autonomy ADAS

North America Platform by Plant Production Forecast, 2022-2024

North America light vehicle production forecast by vehicle type and country; by manufacturer, vehicle type, and country; by manufacturer, country, and plant; and by manufacturer, platform, and plant by month for 2022-2024. Includes list of models with their associated platform.

Market Analysis Production Forecast

Canada November Sales Results Mixed

Although November Canadian new light-vehicle sales took a respite from October’s robust performance, they bested the inventory-strapped prior-year results. Total light-vehicle sales of 1,433,115 for the 11-month period through November were 8.1% lower than the 1,559,832 sold in like-2021.

Market Analysis

AutoTech Check: Parking Assist Technologies From ADAS to Level 4

Pressing the Park button for active parking assistance is no longer an option limited to luxury vehicles.  More OEMs offer systems in everyday cars that range from mere Level 2 steering assist to full Level 3 vehicle control and Level 4 remote parking and valet services.  A big question: whether to rely on external infrastructure.

Autonomy ADAS

Continued Inventory Growth in November Won’t Necessarily Translate to Significant Sales Gains in December, Q1-2023

Inventory gains continue to outpace sales, especially with pickups and sport/utility vehicles. If December sales don’t at least match November’s 14.1-million-unit annualized rate, inventory could rise again. Not necessarily bad, but because it is a low-volume month for production due to holiday-related plant shutdowns combined with typically being one of the strongest months for sales volumes, December usually ends with lower inventory. A sequential increase in inventory at the end of the year could be further confirmation of flagging demand – especially for gas-guzzling trucks - that continues into 2023.

Market Analysis Markets

Hyundai’s Big BEV News; Tesla to Rule U.S. Manufacturing?; Charging News

The South Korean heavyweight is lining up as much as 90 GWh of new battery capacity in the U.S. 

Electrification Batteries

BMW Shares Its Tech Trend Radar

Frank Weber believes innovation is created in the spaces in between, i.e., through interaction.

Cockpit of the Future Connectivity

November U.S. Light-Vehicle Sales Decline from October, but Up Year/Year Third Straight Month

Sales were up from a weak year-ago period but slid significantly from October’s results. The sequential decline was despite rising inventory, especially of fullsize trucks, which typically have their strongest results in the fourth quarter. Strength was in CUVs and cars, which likely were boosted by increased shipments to fleet customers – not necessarily to consumers. Elevated prices of what is available on dealer lots, combined with rising interest rates and fear of recession, are keeping more potential buyers out of the market.

Market Analysis Markets

Q&A: Chicago Fed Automotive Policy Advisor Talks Chip Crisis

Kristin Dziczek sees the higher number of chips per vehicle, reliance on mature technology, uncertainty regarding automakers’ long-term needs and the mismatch between product lifecycles as the main reasons for the ongoing automotive chip shortage.

E/E Architecture Connectivity
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