ANE's February e-magazine goes live Monday

The latest issue of the Automotive News Europe monthly e-magazine goes live on Monday, Feb. 1. This month's edition looks at how Ford and Opel plan to turn their businesses in Europe into consistent money makers after years of struggle.

Our cover story examines each brand’s rebound plans in Europe. Their comebacks happen at a fortuitous time because top executives at each brand’s parent company will likely need to put more of their attention into China, where sales have slowed, and North America, where volume may have peaked.

The rebound of Opel and Ford also puts additional pressure on rivals such as Volkswagen brand, which has been losing market share.

Jim Farley, who started his second full year as Ford of Europe president on Jan. 1, explains in an interview that the division he leads will become even more selective when choosing which segments to attack. Find out why he believes that making the right choices will help turn Ford of Europe into a consistent producer of profits.

Karl-Thomas Neumann, who next month will celebrate the start of his fourth year as Opel CEO, says the automaker has beaten all internal targets since he arrived. He is confident that 2016 will be successful. However, he admits that the final miles of any race are the always the hardest.

Infiniti CEO Roland Krueger expects 2016 to be a breakthrough year for the brand in Europe. He explains why while also revealing his preferred alternative powertrain.

Porsche, which easily surpassed its goal of 200,000 annual global sales in 2015, will review its strategy in the middle of the year. The company’s new sales boss, Detlev von Platen, provided an idea of what to expect next.

Shrinking European sales of compact minivans forced Skoda to join automakers such as Fiat and Honda that have abandoned the segment as customers switch to SUVs and crossovers. Despite a continued slide in compact minivan sales since 2012, the segment remains very valuable to French and German automakers.

Nissan has a vision of what the ideal fully connected car should be and foresees having cars with these crucial characteristics on the road by 2020. Nissan Europe’s head of advanced product planning, Richard Candler, said the biggest challenge is to keep things simple.

The need for megasuppliers is growing as automakers seek to produce their vehicles in multiple locations around the world. This trend played a part in the formation of Yanfeng Automotive Interiors, the U.S.-Chinese joint venture that is now the world’s largest supplier of automotive interiors. YFAI CEO Johannes Roters explains what sparked the creation of an interiors giant with $8.5 billion in annual sales.

The European auto industry ended last year with strong gains across the board. See which companies were the biggest winners.

Autonomously driven EVs managed by new players in the car-sharing sector could change the world’s view of on-demand individual mobility. This shake-up could force automakers to restructure their sales and production operations and cause customers to reassess their views on car ownership. Morgan Stanley Managing Director Adam Jonas calls this futuristic environment Autopia. Automakers would probably use another name for this vision: trouble.

Enjoy the issue!

Luca Ciferri, Editor

You can reach Luca Ciferri at lciferri@crain.com.


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