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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

No 'Cover-Up' By Reformed Toyota

April 27, 2010 4:24 am | by Yuri Kageyama, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

TOKYO (AP) — Japan's transport minister criticized Toyota on Tuesday as initially too slow in responding to its recall crisis, but said the automaker had learned its lesson and is getting quicker in announcing recalls. Seiji Maehara, who will meet U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood later this week during a trip to Washington, said the Japanese government is checking Toyota Motor Corp.

Ford Rakes In $2.1 Billion Profit

April 27, 2010 4:17 am | by Dee-Ann Durbin and Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writers | News | Comments

DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) — Ford Motor Co. said Tuesday it earned $2.1 billion in the first quarter, another sign the economy is improving as people spend more on big-ticket items like cars. The automaker expects to be solidly profitable this year, a year earlier than its previous guidance. Ford said its net income per share was 50 cents during the quarter.

GM Chooses NY Plant for New Engine, Jobs

April 27, 2010 4:14 am | by Carolyn Thompson, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) — General Motors Co. has chosen its Tonawanda Engine plant to build a new V8 engine, a person familiar with the discussions said Monday. The auto maker has scheduled a news conference at the suburban Buffalo plant for Tuesday. GM will announce a $400 million investment for a next-generation engine that the person said will create or retain more than 700 jobs.

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Wal-Mart Cracks Down On Cadmium Jewelry

April 27, 2010 4:11 am | by Justin Pritchard and Natasha Metzler, Associated Press Writers | News | Comments

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The world's largest retailer revealed Monday that it has started to crack down on the use of the toxic metal cadmium in children's jewelry and other kids' products. The new policy doesn't affect what's on the shelves of Wal-Mart stores right now. Instead, children's jewelry and craft-making kits, toys and child-care articles such as bibs and pacifiers manufactured as of April 9 are being tested for cadmium, Wal-Mart Stores Inc.

Northrop Finds Corporate Home Near D.C.

April 27, 2010 4:08 am | by Bob Lewis and Brian Witte, Associated Press Writers | News | Comments

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Defense contractor Northrop Grumman Corp. will move its headquarters cross country to the Virginia suburbs of Washington, D.C., to be closer to its key customers in the U.S. government, officials said Monday. Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley congratulated northern Virginia for winning an intense sweepstakes between the two states for the corporate control center.

GM Set To Invest $890 Million To Upgrade V-8 Engines

April 27, 2010 4:05 am | News | Comments

DETROIT (AP) — General Motors Co. says it will spend $890 million at five factories to upgrade its V-8 engines to make them more fuel efficient. The automaker says the moves will preserve or create roughly 1,600 jobs at factories in Tonawanda, N.Y.; St. Catherines, Ontario; Bay City, Mich.

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Toyota Set To Recall Corollas Made In Brazil

April 26, 2010 4:54 am | News | Comments

SAO PAULO (AP) — Toyota's subsidiary in Brazil has agreed to recall an unspecified number of Corollas due to the risk of sudden acceleration, the Brazilian Justice Ministry has announced. Toyota do Brasil Ltda. will recall all vehicles made in Brazil since April 2008 and will fix loose floor mats that could interfere with the gas pedal and cause sudden acceleration, the ministry said in a statement posted on its website late Friday.

Colorado Town Prepares For Life Off The (Power) Grid

April 26, 2010 4:46 am | by Mark Jaffe | News | Comments

FOWLER, Colo. (AP) — Like many a town on the Eastern Plains, this farming community has seen better days, but now it has a new plan. It is going to disappear — from the electric grid. If all the town's plans — and there are many — come to pass, Fowler will generate its own electricity, biofuel and manure-based gas; and an empty canning plant will turn into a new solar-panel factory.

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Missouri Plant Worker Awarded $750,000 After Accident

April 26, 2010 4:40 am | News | Comments

MONROE CITY, Mo. (AP) — A Monroe City man has been awarded $750,000 after he was severely burned in an accident at the plant where he worked. Greg Beaver was burned by molten aluminum on Nov. 9, 2004 while working at the Pace Industries plant in Monroe City, which has since closed. He sued the former owner of the plant, Leggett & Platt, and Cintas Corp.

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Obama: Reform Wall Street, Save 'Big 3'

April 26, 2010 4:33 am | by Darlene Superville, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama on Saturday cited encouraging signs of an auto industry rebound as he promoted stronger financial rules that he said would help prevent a repeat of the crisis that pushed carmakers to the brink. Senate Democrats have set a test vote Monday on legislation to tighten federal oversight of the financial sector.

Chinese Automakers Take Aim At 'Green' Market Niche

April 26, 2010 4:30 am | by Chi-Chi Zhang, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

BEIJING (AP) — The first Chinese-made car to hit the U.S. market might be an all-electric minivan that skips over gasoline technology and gets a head start on the auto industry's next era. BYD Inc., part-owned by billionaire investor Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc., hopes to start selling its five-seat e6 on the West Coast this year.

Upbeat Earning Reports Point To Improving Economy

April 26, 2010 4:21 am | by Ieva M. Augstums, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

NEW YORK (AP) — Stock futures pointed to a modestly higher open on Wall Street Monday after Caterpillar Inc. joined other companies in reporting more signs of an improving world economy. The big equipment maker, whose results are seen as an economic indicator, reported first-quarter earnings that beat analyst expectations after a one-time charge related to health care expenses.

Manufacturing An Invisible Car

April 23, 2010 11:40 am | Articles | Comments

Normally we don't like to feature too many advertisements in IMPO 's Thursday video-based newsletters, but sometimes we just can't help ourselves. In this case, Shell wanted a better way to show how oil interacts with a car's engine without using special effects. While a number of ideas were floated around, like x-rays, the team finally settled on recreating a Nissan 370Z in clear plastic.

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Canadians Plan 200-Job Alabama Auto Supplier

April 23, 2010 4:30 am | News | Comments

FORT PAYNE, Ala. (AP) — A Canadian auto supplier says it plans to invest $14 million to $16 million in a plant to be built in Fort Payne that will initially employ 200 people. Plasman Corp, part of A.P. Plasman Corp. of Windsor, Ontario, says the facility will do plastic-injection molding, painting and assembly of automotive exterior parts and tool repair.

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Automakers Relived As Auto Fleets Balloon

April 23, 2010 4:18 am | by Dee-Ann Durbin, AP Auto Writer | News | Comments

DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) — U.S. auto sales to fleets surged 47 percent in the first quarter compared to last year, an early sign of economic improvement as governments, construction businesses and rental-car companies began buying again. Automakers are expecting fleet sales to continue to climb.

Boeing Fined $500,000 For Nuclear Runoff

April 23, 2010 4:15 am | News | Comments

VENTURA, Calif. (AP) — Regional water quality regulators have fined Boeing Co. $500,000 for contaminated stormwater runoff at a former nuclear and rocket engine testing facility in eastern Ventura County. The Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board issued a consent judgment Thursday also ordering Boeing to pay $75,000 in attorneys fees and civil penalties for days when contaminants exceeded permitted limits at the Santa Susana Field Laboratory.

Spyker Producing 1,000 Saabs A Week

April 23, 2010 4:13 am | News | Comments

AMSTERDAM (AP) — Spyker Cars NV, the owner of Saab Automobile AB, said Friday it is producing Saab cars at the rate of 1,000 per week since resuming production in March. Spyker, the Dutch niche luxury car maker which in its 11-year history never made a profit, confounded critics by buying the much larger Saab from General Motors in January for $74 million (euro52 million) — less cash than Saab had on its books.

Kia Profits Quadruple In Early 2010

April 23, 2010 4:10 am | by Kelly Olsen, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Kia Motors said net profit quadrupled in the first quarter on stronger sales and equity gains from affiliated companies. Kia, South Korea's second-largest automaker, earned 398.6 billion won ($358 million) in the three months ended March 31, it said in a regulatory filing Friday.

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The New Detroit: Goodbye Cars, Hello Crops

April 23, 2010 4:07 am | by David Runk, Associated Press Writer | News | Comments

DETROIT (AP) — Detroit, which revolutionized manufacturing with its auto assembly lines, could once again be a model for the world as residents transform vacant, often-blighted land into a source of fresh food. With growing interest in locally raised food, cities including New York, Los Angeles and Seattle are looking at ways to foster and manage urban agriculture.

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Sprayon Goes VOC-Friendly

April 22, 2010 7:32 am IMPO Product Releases | Comments

The Eco-GradeT line of products from Sprayon (Cleveland, OH) offer extreme pressure lubricants and fast-acting cleaners or degreasers, which help preserve and protect your equipment, facility, and workforce. All Sprayon Eco-GradeT products offer formulas that are made with renewable, biodegradable resources, and are VOC-compliance in all 50 states.

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