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South Korea's Fair Trade Commission has fined the local units of Denso Corp., Continental AG and Bosch around KRW114.6 billion ($107.99 million) for their role in fixing prices of components sold to Hyundai Motor Co. The fine comes as their counterparts in the United States, Europe and Japan continue their crackdown on price collusion among auto parts makers.
The covered parts include those for air-conditioning systems, seat belts, windshield wipers, radiators, power window motors and power steering. The Fair Trade Commission remarked that the units of Denso, Continental and Bosch had rigged prices of instrument panels and wipers sold to Hyundai and affiliate Kia Motors. Affected vehicles include Hyundai's Sonata, Elantra and Kia's Pride and Carnival.
Denso, a South Korean unit, and a Continental unit were found involved in price-fixing of instrument panels from January 2008 to March 2012 that were installed on 11 million Hyundai and Kia vehicles. Denso and another Korean unit and that of Bosch were found to have colluded on the prices of wipers between August 2008 and February 2009.Read the entire article Denso, Continental and Bosch fined KRW114.6bn for price fixing in South Korea
As the Dieselgate scandal continues its run, German carmaker Volkswagen AG and supplier Robert Bosch GmbH each reached a settlement agreement with owners of VW, Audi and Porsche diesel-powered vehicles found to be cheating emissions tests. The agreement, once approved, would entail a payment of at least $1.6 billion to accommodate specific actions – repair, buy back or compensation – meant to settle the companies’ differences with affected customers.
VW’s settlement agreement covers around 78,000 VW, Audi and Porsche vehicles powered by the group’s 3.0-liter TDI V6 diesel engine. This agreement became necessary because of the so-called Dieselgate scandal, which is basically a scheme implemented by VW to sell around 590,000 diesel-powered vehicles in the US – from model years 2009 to 2016 -- by making it seem that these units were cleaner than they actually were. Regulators have found out that VW employed a defeat device that helps these vehicles cheat on emissions tests.
Under the 3.0-liter TDI settlement program, Volkswagen would pay up to $1.2 billion in benefits assuming that 100 percent of affected customers take part; all eligible Generation 1 vehicles are bought back; and Generation 2 vehicles are fixed with an Emissions Compliant Repair to bring them to same emissions standards as they were certified.Read the entire article VW and Bosch to pay at least $1.6B to customers over Dieselgate scandal
Wolf-Henning Scheider has resigned from Robert Bosch to join engine parts maker Mahle. He was chief of Bosch's automotive division. Bosch is now grouping all automotive activities grouped under the new mobility solutions business sector, and has assigned Rolf Bulander to take over Scheider’s role.
Bulander will also be in charge of Bosch’s diesel systems, gasoline systems, and starter motors and generators divisions as well as for the electrical drives division. Dirk Hoheisel, meanwhile, will take charge of Bosch’s automotive steering business as well as the chassis systems control, car multimedia, and automotive electronics divisions.
Assuming Scheider’s sales and marketing roles will be Markus Heyn, who was most recently president of the Bosch diesel systems unit. He will also be in charge of the automotive aftermarket division and the ETAS and Bosch Engineering subsidiaries.Read the entire article Wolf-Henning Scheider quits Bosch, joins Mahle
By 2025, fuel-cell technology will be less costly due to greater economies of scale and will be commercially viable for mass use in vehicles, according to Wolf-Henning Scheider, head of Bosch's automotive division. Fuel cell vehicles still have to gain acceptance due to prohibitive development costs despite their capability to travel five times longer distance than electric cars and take less time to refuel.
Scheider remarked that fuel cell vehicles are a viable alternative to other zero-emission vehicle technologies. He quipped that while fuel-cell powertrains might still be twice as costly to build than those found in electric cars in 2025, the higher operating range of fuel-cell cars would make them a viable alternative.
Carmakers developing fuel cell vehicles include Daimler, Hyundai, Nissan, Ford, General Motors, Toyota and Honda and General Motors are all developing fuel-cell vehicles. Toyota and Honda have plans to commence sales of fuel-cell vehicles next year.Read the entire article Bosch exec says fuel-cell tech will be commercially viable by 2025
With ZF Friedrichshafen's planned acquisition of TRW Automotive on full blast, another German supplier is bound to benefit from the transaction, albeit unexpectedly. Bosch recently announced plans to gain full control of its 50-50 steering joint venture with ZF.
That came after Bosch’s partner disclosed intentions to sell its stake in the joint venture – which build electronic steering systems critical to development of driverless cars – to the largest supplier in the world and purchase TRW for $105.60 a share. ZF has to let go of its holdings in the joint venture, ZF Lenksysteme, to avoid antitrust issues in the acquisition of TRW.
ZF doesn’t have to worry about losing a place in the steering segment since TRW also has a steering systems business largely involved in developing technology that could pave way for autonomous driving. ZF will have to pay TRW around $12.4 billion in cold cash, based on equity value.Read the entire article Robert Bosch is silent beneficiary of ZF’s TRW takeover
ZF Friedrichshafen is resuming discussions to exit its joint venture with Robert Bosch, a move that if successful would allow it to successfully acquire TRW Automotive Holdings, people privy with the matter told Bloomberg. The parties plan to resume talks this week following a short break due to summer holidays.
ZF wants to divest its 50-percent stake in the steering-systems venture to Bosch to avoid antitrust problems since TRW boasts of a significant presence in steering systems, people privy with the matter said. The sources said if Bosch agrees with ZF, a deal to acquire TRW could come as early as next week. ZF and Bosch established the joint venture in 1999, which now boasts of around $5.5 billion in annual sales.
Both ZF and TRW have agreed on the broad outline of a merger, one of the sources told Bloomberg. The parties have talked about a price of between $105 and $110 per share, although the final figure is still under negotiations.Read the entire article ZF Friedrichshafen resumes talks over exit from Robert Bosch JV
ZF Friedrichshafen is aiming to become the second-largest parts supplier in the world, but that target is being put on hold by negotiations to exit a joint venture with Robert Bosch, people privy with the matter told Bloomberg. ZF is seeking to sell its stake in the joint venture before it could complete an agreement to acquire TRW Automotive Holdings.
Breaking down the partnership, however, is complex and several key parties are away for summer holidays, the sources said. ZF wants to close the deal with TRW in the first half of September, the people told Bloomberg. ZF and TRW have discussed a sale at a price of around $105 to $110 per share, although the final amount is still under negotiations.
In July, ZF and its advisers at Citigroup Inc. and other banks had been exploring a proposal that values TRW at between $110 and $112.50 per share, two people told Bloomberg last month.Read the entire article Talks over Bosch venture exit stalling ZF’s acquisition of TRW Automotive
Robert Bosch GmbH is expecting its sales to grow between 3 and 5 percent this year, even as it shifts its focus onto Asian markets and developing Internet-connected sensors. Bosch intends to penetrate into a thriving market for Internet-enabled devices and systems that allows autonomous driving.
Bosch Chairman Volkmar Denner remarked that they would continue with their traditional business while opening up new fields, allowing them to benefit from their broad technological and industrial expertise.
The company said that the focus shift toward more sophisticated vehicles should lead to a 25-percent surge in ultrasound sensor output this year to 50 million devices, and a doubling of radar and video sensors production to more than 2 million units.Read the entire article Robert Bosch expects 3 to 5 percent sales growth in 2014
The United States National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has opened a preliminary evaluation into the likelihood that around 50 EV chargers made by Robert Bosch LLC may overheat and result in a fire. The investigation came after a driver of a 2013 Nissan Leaf reported smoke emissions while the vehicle was charging.
Bosch spokeswoman Cheryl Kilborn stated that the German supplier was reviewing the filing and would cooperate with the investigation as it tries to determine the cause of the matter. On the other hand, Nissan spokesman Brian Brockman told Reuters in an e-mail that the Japanese carmaker was aware of the investigation and would assist in it as needed.
According to NHTSA and the consumer complaint filed in August 2013, the charger in issue -- a Bosch Power Xpress 240V -- had been charging for over an hour at 30 amps at a private home when indications of overheating, including a "strong burning smell," were noticed.Read the entire article NHTSA opens preliminary probe onto Bosch EV chargers
Robert Bosch would commence producing an automatic parking system in 2015 for an anonymous customer. Dirk Hoheisel, a management board member at member, disclosed last week at the SAE International's World Congress that fully autonomous vehicles are expected in the next decade.
Bosch's parking assist maneuvers a vehicle into or out of tight parking spaces, even if no one is driving it. The driver just can get out of the vehicle and commence the parking maneuver through a smartphone or key fob. To stop the maneuver, the driver just needs to take his finger off the button.
Bosch’s parking assist also works wonders during parallel parking. Hoheisel told Automotive News that automated parking is the next logical step for autonomous vehicles. He remarked that the system employs ultrasonic sensors and cameras to track the vehicles movements.Read the entire article Bosch to produce an automatic parking system in 2015 for undisclosed customer
Kazuaki Fujitani, a former executive at Denso Corp. is expected to serve one year and one day in a prison in the United States after agreeing to plead guilty to one charge of obstruction of justice in the government's ongoing price-fixing probe of auto suppliers. Fujitani was general manager of Denso's Toyota sales division between February 2010 and March 2010 when he deleted "numerous e-mails and electronic documents" after learning that the Federal Bureau of Investigation executed a search warrant on Denso's US unit near Detroit, the Department of Justice said in a statement. The felony charge against Fujitani was filed in U.S. District Court in Detroit.
The files Fujitani deleted messages- covering Aug. 1, 2009 to Jan. 4, 2010 -- that showed communications between Denso and one or more rivals about "requests for quotation" made by Toyota for the heater control panel of the Toyota Avalon.
Toyota holds a 22-percent stake in Denso, which pleaded guilty in March 2012 and was made to pay $78 million in criminal fine for price-fixing its heater control panels and electronic control units. "As per the plea agreement made between the U.S. Department of Justice and DENSO on Jan. 30, 2012, we've been fully cooperating with the DOJ investigation," Denso said in a statement.Read the entire article Former Denso exec Kazuaki Fujitani agrees to plead guilty to obstruction of justice
Robert Bosch posted a 3-percent surge in revenues in 2013 to EUR46.4 billion, supported mainly by a 7-percent rise in revenues at its automotive unit to EUR30.7 billion ($41.7 billion). The surge in the division’s revenues was attributed to strong demand for gasoline direct-injection and diesel-injection system, Bosch said in a statement based on preliminary figures.
According to a spokesman, the unit posted an 8-percent margin in earnings before interest and taxes margin of 8 percent, up from 4.5 percent in 2012. Bosch’s 2013 revenue was hit by a EUR1.5 billion burden attributable to foreign exchange fluctuations. In April 2013, Bosch said it expected an overall sales growth of up to 4 percent.
Excluding an extraordinary EUR1.3 billion charge for losses on its solar business, Bosch's overall EBIT margin in 2013 would have been 6 percent, according to preliminary figures. Bosch will disclose its 2013 full-year earnings on April 30, 2014. Bosch officials have said that they don’t expect significant charges this year.Read the entire article Robert Bosch logs 3% hike in revenues in 2013 helped by automotive unit
Robert Bosch GmbH has developed a self-parking system for vehicles that a driver can activate remotely through a smartphone. This self-parking system uses ultra-sonic sensors and video cameras to park the vehicle and will go into production this year, according to Tim Frasier, regional president of Bosch Automotive Electronics North America.
He said that the self-parking system represents the next logical step for the development of driverless vehicles. A driver just needs to pull up the vehicle to an open space in a lot, activate the parking function and step out. Once outside, the driver has to activate an app on his smart phone to complete the parking maneuver.
He said that the system will work in any parking and will be especially useful in tight European garages. Its next-generation version -- dubbed valet parking -- will enable a driver to step out of the vehicle at the entrance to the parking lot then let the unit find its own parking space. The driver would also be able to retrieve the vehicle by remotely starting it up with his smartphone.Read the entire article Robert Bosch develops smartphone-activated self-parking system
Robert Bosch GmbH and GS Yuasa Corp. are targeting to sell a lithium ion battery by 2020. This battery reportedly cuts production costs by half and delivers twice the energy density of current batteries, according to Wolf-Henning Scheider, the management board director in charge of Bosch's global automotive business.
Scheider disclosed that the goal was to start to put the batteries on the market to supply what is forecasted by the German company as increasing demand for electrified vehicles. He remarked at the Tokyo Motor Show that they expect around 12 million cars electrified by 2020, compared to the forecasted 2 million EVs this year, according to LMC Automotive. Currently, the cost and limited performance of today’s lithium ion batteries are considered as obstacles to the widespread adoption of electric vehicles and hybrids.
Lithium ion batteries are considered better than nickel-metal hydride ones since they are lighter and could hold more power. However, lithium ion batteries are more expensive and usually used in small city commuter EVs since they cannot store ample energy for regular long-distance travel. According to Scheider, sales targets for the venture have yet to be set, and it is too early to forecast the percentage of the projected 12 million units that Bosch will supply.Read the entire article Bosch venture expects to offer improved lithium ion battery by 2020
Denso Corp. posted a 75-percent surge in net income in the quarter ended June 30, 2013, to JPY86.04 billion ($872.7 million). The Japanese supplier also posted a 13-percent rise in revenues in the quarter to $10.12 billion. Denso logged a 31-percent in quarterly operating profit $1.04 billion. Kenichiro Ito, an executive director at Denso, remarked that despite a decline in vehicle production in Japan, the supplier’s sales and operating income surged thanks to steady vehicle production in North America and the emerging markets.
One of the biggest boosters of the supplier’s profit hike in the quarter is the continuing weakness of the Japanese yen against other currencies, accounting for $340 million of the operating profit. Denso logged a 30-percent surge in sales in North America to $2.1 billion and a 20-percent jump in operating income to $63.4 million. The Japanese supplier also logged a sales increase in Europe at 26 percent to $1.2 billion.
Higher labor cost and other expenses, however, dragged the company’s operating income in the quarter ended June 30, 2013 down by 5 percent to $17.5 million. Thanks to its strong performance in the quarter, Denso updated its earnings forecast to reflect an increase in expected net income of $2.47 billion on expected net sales of $39.46 billion in the fiscal year ending March 31, 2014.Read the entire article Denso logs JPY86-bil net income for quarter ended June 30
Robert Bosch GmbH is partnering with Mitsubishi Corp. and Japanese battery maker GS Yuasa International Ltd. to work on an auto lithium ion battery development project. The three companies are planning to create a joint venture that will conduct research and development as well as provide sales and marketing support to the three parent firms, Bosch said in a statement.
The batteries produced by the joint venture will be used to power vehicles like plug-in hybrids or electric cars. Bosch will own 50 percent of the joint venture, with Mitsubishi and GS Yuasa each holding a 25-percent stake.
The composition of the joint venture’s management and supervisory boards will reflect these stakes. The joint venture will commence operations early 2014 and will have its headquarters in Bosch hometown of Stuttgart in Germany.Read the entire article Robert Bosch, Mitsubishi and GS Yuasa creates battery JV
Two executives at Denso Corp. have agreed to plead guilty to conspiring to fix prices of electronic auto components sold to Toyota, according to the United States Department of Justice. The Denso executives, Japanese nationals Yuji Suzuki and Hiroshi Watanabe, have also agreed to cooperate with an ongoing criminal investigation.
The bargain agreement is the latest in an extensive probe onto price fixing for a variety of car components that has covered nine companies and obtained guilty pleas from 14 executives. The Denso executives will serve time in US prison and pay a criminal fine, according to the Justice Department. As part of the bargain agreement, Suzuki and Watanabe will be imprisoned for 16 and 15 months respectively.
According to the Justice Department, the two Denso executives agreed to plead guilty to conspiring to fix the prices of heater control panels that regulate vehicle temperature and were sold to Toyota Motor Corp. and a US unit. Suzuki likewise agreed to plead guilty to conspiring to fix the prices of electronic control units that regulate power windows, power locks and other electrical systems.Read the entire article Two Denso executives to plead guilty to price-fixing conspiracy
Bosch Automotive Service Solutions will start selling the Bosch Power Max electric-vehicle residential charging station for a retail price of under $450.The charging station comes with a 16-amp configuration and a 12-foot cable, offering 2,400-volt charging in half the time and at half the price as a Level 2 residential charging station, according to Tanvir Arfi, president of Bosch Automotive Service Solutions.
Bosch Automotive Service Solutions is the new name for the SPX Service Solutions that Robert Bosch GmbH acquired in 2012 for $1.15 billion. SPX has sold around 16,000 previous recharging stations and performed about 6,000 installations. The Bosch Power Max is designed to work with all electric vehicles. It is also available in a faster 30-amp configuration, with cord length of up to 25 feet.
While other residential charging stations are priced at around $1000 or more, the Bosch Power Max costs only half the price. According to Arfi, they managed to save costs by trimming the length of the cable used by the station.Read the entire article Bosch Power Max EV residential charging station to cost below $450
Because there’s too much capacity for lithium ion batteries, Robert Bosch GmbH has decided to withdraw from its venture with Korea’s Samsung SDI to develop and manufacture lithium ion batteries last year. At a media roundtable last Friday in Tokyo, the German supplier’s Chairman Volkmar Denner said that the market for hybrid and electric vehicles is over-saturated.
He said that rather than concentrating on mass production, Bosch will focus on developing next-generation batteries. Bosch anticipates that electrified vehicles will make up just 10% of the worldwide market in 2020. Denner said that the company is glad not to be engaging in high-volume battery production since the market is expected to be rather low until 2020.
Denner said that Bosch will focus its efforts on r&d so it could make some progress with regards to the energy density and the pricing of lithium ion batteries. Bosch has partnered with Samsung SDI, via a 50-50 venture named SB LiMotive, to develop and produce batteries for electrified cars.Read the entire article Bosch pulls out from its venture with Samsung SDI, will develop next-generation batteries
Denso International America Inc. will invest around $1 billion in North America in the next four years, the unit of Japanese supplier Denso Corp. disclosed at the Detroit auto show last week. According to Denso, the expansion will include around $750 million in the United States expected to create over 1,200 jobs.
Denso said it would expand production of some current components like radiators and condensers and would also add parts to its lineup in the US. These parts include stop-start starters, high output alternators, inverters for hybrid vehicles, memory-seat modules, and gasoline direct injectors. Denso will also produce its own production equipment, including dies, in North America as part of a plan to reduce imports from its Japanese parent. According to spokeswoman, Denso currently spends "several millions of dollars" annually on dies and other production equipment imported from Japan.
Denso currently employs 15,685 people at 32 plants, R&D facilities and administrative operations in North America. Denso’s $1-billion investments are part of the supplier’s five-year business plan, which entails increasing global revenues at a 7-percent annual rate to ¥4 trillion ($48.49 billion) in the fiscal year ending March 31, 2017, from $38.24 billion in the fiscal year ended March 31, 2012.Read the entire article Denso to invest $1 billion in North America in next four years
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