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An Auto-matic Supply Chain

Guest contributor:Kaity Nakagoshi The auto industry is back on track with surprising growth in 2011, and automakers are pushing forward in designing en...

Freddie Pierce
|Mar 29|magazine7 min read

Guest contributor: Kaity Nakagoshi

The auto industry is back on track with surprising growth in 2011, and automakers are pushing forward in designing energy efficient vehicles. One challenge lies in controlling emissions used in creating green vehicles, which still tend to be higher than emissions used to create standard cars. However, automakers are stepping up to the plate with some genuinely efficient cars and car-manufacturing plants. Fortunately, all of this may lead to job creation in the environmental industry.

Year Over Year

You may recall the steep decline in auto sales that occurred at the beginning of our current recession. Detroit and other leading manufacturing cities were hit hard, and the global market fared no better. Many governments used stimulus programs to salvage jobs. President Obama's stimulus package required manufacturers to increase their efforts in fuel efficiency, reduce carbon footprints, and lessen oil dependence. The tides have turned for the U.S. market which showed a 10% growth rate in 2011. Among the leaders in growth were Chrysler, Volkswagen and Hyundai – all three gained by 20% or more. Notably, Hyundai focused on customer service needs and process quality.

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Impact of Production

As automakers have risen to meet the challenges of green initiatives, hybrid cars have gained in popularity. These cars have received some criticism due to the fact that production causes significantly more emissions, an increase of 8% to 23% over the production of regular vehicles. When weighed against the total emissions produced during the car's life cycle, hybrid vehicles remain better for the environment. However, the statistics do show that production of hybrid cars could benefit from a more sustainable supply chain.

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