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IMPO Insider

Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Fiat Brings The Tiny 500 To American Soil

May 4, 2011 8:32 am | by Ann M. Job, Associated Press

The 2012 Fiat 500 hatchback is the newest and arguably the cutest small car in the United States, with federal government fuel mileage ratings that are at the top of the subcompact class. The four-passenger, two-door 500, which is the first Fiat to be sold by the automaker in this country since 1983, is rated at 30 miles per gallon in city driving and 38 mpg on the highway with standard manual transmission.

Intel Redesigns The Transistor In '3-D'

May 4, 2011 8:29 am | by Jordan Robertson, AP Technology Writer

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Intel Corp. said Wednesday that it has redesigned the electronic switches on its chips so that computers can keep getting cheaper and more powerful. The switches, known as transistors, have typically been flat. By adding a third dimension — "fins" that jut up from the base — Intel will be able to make the transistors and chips smaller.

Boeing Swings Back At NLRB's Anti-Labor Claims

May 4, 2011 8:27 am | by Sam Hananel, Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — Boeing Co. says federal labor regulators unfairly twisted or misquoted statements by company executives to make a case that the company illegally retaliated against union workers. The company is urging the National Labor Relations Board to withdraw a complaint that accuses Boeing of locating a new plant in South Carolina in part to avoid future labor disruptions in Washington state.

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GM Invests $131 Million In Kentucky-Built Corvettes

May 4, 2011 8:25 am | by Bruce Schreiner, Associated Press

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (AP) — General Motors is putting more muscle into making Corvettes. The automaker said Wednesday it will invest $131 million — and add about 250 jobs — at the south-central Kentucky assembly plant that produces the classic muscle car. The investment allows GM to produce the next-generation Corvette at the Bowling Green plant.

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Analyst: Japanese Car Shortages Could Benefit GM

May 4, 2011 4:54 am

NEW YORK (AP) — General Motors Co. should benefit more than any U.S. competitors from the shortage of Japanese cars resulting from the earthquake in Japan, a Credit Suisse analyst wrote Tuesday in upgrading the stock. That could boost the biggest U.S. automaker's earnings this year by 60 cents a share, Credit Suisse said.

Boeing Will Deliver First 787 In 3Q 2011

May 4, 2011 4:44 am

SANTIAGO, Chile (AP) — Boeing will deliver its first 787 jet in third-quarter 2011 and roll out two of the long-delayed new planes each month after that, a company executive said Tuesday in the Chilean capital. Latin America is an important market for Boeing, with 11,000 company jets flying in the region and requests pending for 3,400 more.

BMW Profit Quadruples On Accelerating Sales Worldwide

May 4, 2011 4:31 am | by David McHugh, AP Business Writer

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — German luxury carmaker BMW says first-quarter net profit rose almost fourfold to euro1.21 billion ($1.79 billion) as sales climbed all around the world, but particularly in China. Profits were up from last year's euro324 million. Revenues grew 29 percent to euro16.

Geithner: China Needs To Move Faster On Its Currency

May 4, 2011 4:28 am | by Martin Crutsinger, AP Economics Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) — Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said Tuesday that China needs to make more progress on economic issues vital to America's interests, including speeding up the rise of its currency against the dollar. Critics say an undervalued yuan is swelling China's trade surplus. Geithner said a stronger yuan would help reduce trade imbalances and bolster China's efforts to restrain inflation.

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Turning Chicken Feathers Into Plastic Bottles

May 4, 2011 4:22 am | by Michael J. Crumb, Associated Press

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Researchers have developed ways to substitute chicken feathers for petroleum in some plastic products, and at least two companies are working to bring items ranging from biodegradable flower pots to office furniture to market. The substitution would allow the U.S. to cut back on its oil use, however slightly, and give poultry producers another market for the more than 3 billion pounds of leftover chicken feathers they have each year, the developers and others said.

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AP: Economic Stress Reaches Three-Month Low

May 4, 2011 4:20 am | by Martin Crutsinger and Mike Schneider, Associated Press

Lower unemployment, bankruptcies and foreclosures in March reduced the nation's economic stress to its lowest point this year, according to The Associated Press' monthly analysis of conditions around the country. More than 85 percent of the nation's 3,141 counties and every state but two — Louisiana and South Dakota — enjoyed better conditions in March than in February, the AP's Economic Stress Index showed.

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Toyota: Sales Rose 1 Percent In April

May 3, 2011 9:40 am

DETROIT (AP) — Toyota Motor Corp. says its U.S. sales rose 1 percent in April, a weak showing in an otherwise strong month for the industry. Overall U.S. sales are expected to increase 19 percent from last April. Sales of Toyota's popular Prius hybrid were flat. The Camry sedan edged up 9 percent.

Wash. Steelworkers Approve First Strike Since 1970s

May 3, 2011 9:33 am | by Erik Olson, Associated Press Writer

LONGVIEW, Wash. (AP) — Union workers at Georgia-Pacific's Wauna mill in northwest Oregon have given negotiators strike authorization as contract talks with the company have bogged down, a union representative said Monday. The 900 members of the United Steelworkers local 1097 have been working under a contract that expired in April 2010, said Gaylan Prescott, the union's staff representative.

NYC Taxis To Get Japanese Makeover From Nissan

May 3, 2011 9:26 am

NEW YORK (AP) — New York City's iconic taxi fleet is getting a Japanese makeover City officials announced Tuesday that they had picked Nissan to supply the fleet for the next 10 years. The Japanese automaker beat out Ford Motor Co. and Karsan USA in a contest for the rights to anchor the fleet.

NYC Picks Nissan To Supply Yellow Cabs

May 3, 2011 9:25 am

NEW YORK (AP) — New York City's iconic taxi fleet is getting a Japanese makeover City officials announced Tuesday that they had picked Nissan to supply the fleet for the next 10 years. The Japanese automaker beat out Ford Motor Co. and Karsan USA in a contest for the rights to anchor the fleet.

GM To Announce Investment In Bowling Green Plant

May 3, 2011 7:46 am

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (AP) — GM North America President Mark Reuss is scheduled to make a visit Wednesday to the south-central Kentucky assembly plant where Corvettes are made, according to a statement from the company. The statement says Reuss will be at the plant in Bowling Green at 10:15 a.

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Goodyear Teams Up With Germans To Replace Blimps

May 3, 2011 7:21 am | by Thomas J. Sheeran, Associated Press

CLEVELAND (AP) — Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. will team up with another name rich in blimp history to replace its three U.S. airships with bigger, faster ones. The Akron-based company said Tuesday that it would work with German manufacturer ZLT Zeppelin Luftschifftechnik to build three new blimps beginning in 2013.

GM Sales Jumped 27 Percent As Buyers Go Fuel-Efficient

May 3, 2011 7:19 am | by Dee-Ann Durbin and Tom Krisher, AP Auto Writers

DETROIT (AP) — General Motors' U.S. car and truck sales jumped 27 percent in April as the economy continued to improve and $4 a gallon gasoline pushed buyers into more fuel-efficient vehicles. The largest U.S. car company sold 232,538 vehicles last month, led by a shift to small cars and crossover vehicles.

Chrysler: We'll Lose 100,000 Vehicles On Supply Shortages

May 3, 2011 4:54 am | by The Associated Press

Chrysler Group LLC CEO Sergio Marchionne said Monday that the company will lose production of 50,000 to 100,000 vehicles this year because of the March 11 earthquake in Japan. Chrysler uses components that are made in that nation. Chrysler has cut overtime at plants in Canada and Mexico to conserve parts.

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U.S. Auto Sales Rose 19 Percent During April Buying Frenzy

May 3, 2011 4:47 am | by The Associated Press

DETROIT (AP) — U.S. sales of cars and trucks are expected to rise 19 percent in April as customers worried about shortages of Japanese cars rushed to buy the models they wanted. Automakers will release monthly sales results starting around 11 a.m. EDT Tuesday. In March, sales jumped 17 percent from a year earlier to 1.

Protestors Arrested At Honeywell Nuclear Part Plant

May 3, 2011 4:44 am

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Kansas City police arrested more than 50 people protesting at the construction site of a Honeywell plant that will build parts for nuclear bombs. Police say the protesters were arrested Monday after marching toward the gates of the site in south Kansas City.

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