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What the striking GM workers really want

The Morning Shift All your daily car news in one convenient place. Isn't your time more important?

UAW's biggest topic is concerned, new developments in the ongoing UAW probe, additional background information on Nissan's new CEO and more waiting for you in The Morning Shift of Wednesday, October 9, 2019.

1st Gear: Job Security

As United Auto Workers strike against General Motors marches, there is really no end in sight . UAW dealers and GM reps have still not been able to negotiate a contract both sides are satisfied with, and job security is one of the big issues keeping the two apart.

Late last night, a UAW top negotiator for Reuters confirmed job security is one of the most contentious issues. A letter from UAW Vice President Terry Dittes to UAW officials read:

“We have made it clear that there is no job security for us when GM products are made in other countries for the purpose of selling them here in the United States. We believe that the vehicles GM sells here will be built here. We do not understand GM's opposition to this proposal. "

It is very obvious why this would be a major point of contention. In November last year, GM announced that it would close four factories in the United States, including two assembly plants, and cut thousands of jobs in North America. And GM, which builds trucks and SUVs in Mexico, has further pissed off union workers.

As the car manufacturer turns more to electric vehicles, workers fear that there will not be as much vacancy, and people who work at transmission systems will not be paid as much. Before the strike began last month, GM said:

it had offered to make $ 7 billion in new US investments in eight facilities in four states, but did not specify the time, location or products with the exception of a planned electric truck.

Which makes you wonder if the closed facilities were intended as bargaining chips since the beginning !

To date, GM has lost over half a billion dollars due to the strike . None of the pages seem to be swinging with this one.

2. gives: Meanwhile, the UAW probe continues

Back in August, we reported The Feds carried out a series of attacks over 5 p.m. at least four states as part of the UAW corruption scandal. Among the properties that were attacked were the Detroit home of current UAW president Gary Jones and the California home of Dennis Williams, former UAW president. Now federal agents are trying to find out whether Detroit auto makers "indirectly paid" money to build a Williams Lake house.

The Feds want to find out if money from GM, Ford and Fiat Chrysler was "funneled through jointly run fitness centers" to buy perks for UAW executives at the Black Lake Retreat, with or without driver's permission, reports Detroit News . From History:

Investigators have issued jury appearances, including at least one to a contractor who worked at the UAW Black Lake Conference Center, to determine if as much as $ 1 million from Detroit automakers was spent on personal luxury for union leaders. , according to sources familiar with the investigation, who are not authorized to speak publicly. Those amenities include a three-bedroom, three-and-a-half baths, 1,885 square feet of Williams home, boats and a dock used exclusively by UAW officers, the sources said.

UAW spent its own money to pay for the Williams home and renovate an adjoining cottage used by the retired president, spokesman Brian Rothenberg told The News. The spending was part of a $ 10 million redevelopment project in Black Lake that was approved by UAW's board about four years ago, he said.

"Black Lake is a 50-year-old facility that welcomes tens of thousands of UAW members and audiences each year," Rothenberg wrote in an email to The News. "There were renovations of these facilities during President Williams & # 39; term of office performed by UAW Black Lake employees belonging to the United Steelworkers union."

So far, no criminal charges have been brought relating to the Black Lake investigation. But the investigation is still young. And I have a feeling that this UAW scandal is going deep. Eleven people have been charged so far, but I bet there will be more.

You can read the rest of the News & # 39; story here ; it is very detailed.

3. gives: More about the new Nissan boss

Yesterday we learned Nissan had crowned a new CEO : 53 year old Makoto Uchida. He is a Nissan veteran, has good Renault conditions and has helped lead the Chinese market. Here's a little more about him.

Uchida worked overseas for Renault and Samsung in South Korea. And he studied theology at Doshisha University, which Automotive News points out is an irregular background for an executive automotive industry.

Uchida's most immediate business order would be to somehow stop Nissan's slippery profits and "perform a massive overhaul" while also balancing the relationship between France and Japan.

Fingers crossed for this guy who he is also not found on

Fourth Gives: Pod Cars

Back in January 2018, which was about 72 years ago, we first laid eyes on Toyota's E-Palette mobile space as the car manufacturer showed at CES, it will hit Tokyo's streets next year for the 2020 Summer Olympics. While it may seem pretty boring and faceless, Toyota's global design manager feels it will invite a "golden age" in automotive design.

A golden age with more creative and personal design, to be specific, according to Automotive News Europe .This is why:

Because Toyota sees it, future vehicles will polarize in two directions. there are utilitarian careers like the e-palette dedicated to getting people and things from A to B. And at the other end, there will be ultra-specialized vehicles for personal use.

And that's where the fun starts for designers. Humphries expects the demand for unique sports cars, ATVs, luxurious sedans or other provocative niche vehicles.

That's because the proliferation of movers with new mobility will eliminate the need for people to buy a humdrum, one size fits all vehicles, such as a family SUV or mid-size sedan.

So, basically, because cars like the e-pallet will exist to do all the mundane things, people can afford to get a little crazy with the "fun car." This is assuming that people can afford two cars at this time and that the world has not caught fire. Sure! I have to believe it when I see it.

5th Gear: Renault CEO Could Be Out

Meanwhile, things don't seem so peachy at Renault.

Thierry Bollore, CEO of Renault, could be on his way out, according to Automotive News Europe citing the French newspaper Le Figaro . From History:

Bollore was a close ally of former Renault chairman and CEO Carlos Ghosn. He expressed support for Ghosn after his former boss was arrested in Japan for alleged financial crimes in November last year, angering Nissan.

Nissan has little confidence in Bollore and his relationship with Senard is no more than cordial, Les Echos reported another French newspaper, .

Some at Renault question why Bollore, as a protege of Ghosn, remains at the helm of the car manufacturer while other Ghosn confidants have left or been forced out, Les Ekko said. The newspaper said that in addition to stabilizing Renault's alliance with Nissan, Senard's mandate was "clean house" on Renault, a step he has yet to take.

Bollore's proposal for success could be presented at the next board meeting on October 18. apparently. With Nissan's new CEO at the helm, it is unclear what steps the two companies will take to get back on track.

Reverse: Meteorite, Meet Malibu

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