Cummins signs Indonesian licensee Cummins Engine. Co. has licensed Indonesia's PT Perkasa Heavyndo to build Cummins' B Series engines in that country. Heavyndo will manufacture B Series engines ranging from 80 to 180 hp. at its plant in Subang, on the island of Java, starting this year. According to Cummins, the engines will be used initially to power midsize and heavy-duty trucks produced through an integrated-manufacturing project launched by Heavyndo. That program may eventually include lighter-duty trucks, as well as construction, mining, and agricultural vehicles. Cummins expects initial capacity will be 30,000 engines annually, with an eventual increase to a rate of 50,000. According to Heavyndo, this will represent the largest project of its type yet in Indonesia. The license agreement contains an option for Heavyndo's parent firm, the Jakarta-based Texmaco group, and Cummins to form a joint venture "to take advantage of fast-developing markets in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations," noted Cummins.
Paccar Leasing opens in Mexico. Paccar Leasing Corp. has begun operating in Mexico as PacLease Mexicana S.A. de C.V., with offices in Mexicali and soon in Mexico City. "This is an excellent time for PacLease Mexicana to begin meeting the needs of our customers who have operations in Mexico," said Phil Hirsch, vp of Paccar Leasing and director general of PacLease Mexicana. Paccar said full-service leasing is a "relatively new concept" in Mexico, but noted it has been manufacturing and selling trucks there for over 37 years. "PacLease is just combining what Paccar has been doing in Mexico for many years into one offering through PacLease Mexicana," Hirsch said. He noted that PacLease Mexicana will offer Kenworth-Kenmex Class 7 and 8 trucks and the lessor will have access to Kenpar parts-distribution capabilities, as well as 22 dealer-service locations.
Navistar sites Mexican plant. According to Navistar International Corp., it has chosen a 270-acre site in Escobedo, near Monterrey, in the state of Nuevo Leon for a planned Mexican truck plant. The new facility will assemble medium- and heavy-duty trucks on two lines at a projected daily rate of 65 trucks per shift. The OEM's board okayed a $167-million capital expenditure for construction after talks broke off with the United Auto Workers over work rules Navistar sought before it would put a new-truck program into its Springfield, Ohio, plant. It is estimated that the Mexican plant will cut 3,000 of the 5,000 jobs now at Springfield within two years. The new Mexican plant is slated to begin producing trucks next year, when Navistar's current licensing agreement with Mexico's Dina Camiones runs out. "Having our own plant in Mexico will allow us to take full advantage of the expected upturn in the Mexican economy as well as expand our presence in other Latin American markets, helping fuel Navistar's growth," said John Horne, the OEM's chairman, president, and CEO. "This move will also enable us to better serve our current U.S. customers, many of whom are now operating in Mexico and require a complete production, sales, and service network close to where they do business."
Saturn to complete circle. The U.S. automaker created just ten years ago to battle Japanese imports has announced it will begin selling cars in Japan this spring. Over the next three years, according to Ward's Automotive Reports, GM's Saturn Corp. plans to set up 60 to 70 "stores" covering 25 Japanese markets, and projects each will sell over 400 vehicles a year. "You really don't know how many stores you'll have or need until the customer starts buying your cars," said Keith Wicks, general director of Tokyo-based Saturn of Japan. He said Saturn will fly parts directly to Japanese dealers, rather than warehouse them in Japan, and expects to achieve the same 95% "line-fill" on replacement parts it has in the U.S.
Chrysler in new Mini. Britain's ubiquitous Mini is slated for a redesign, funded by its producer, BMW's Rover Group subsidiary, as well as a new engine, thanks to a joint venture signed with Chrysler Corp. The Mini was introduced in 1959 and will be redone by Rover to the tune of over $620 million. Due out in 2001, the new Mini will be powered by a Chrysler-designed 1.4-liter engine that will be built at a $500-million joint venture plant.
Dana affiliate buys Brazilian firm. Dana Corp.'s Brazilian affiliate, Dana Industrias Ltda., has agreed to acquire the assets of Industrias Orlando Stevaux Ltda., a maker of gaskets and oil seals in Brazil. Chuck McNamara, president of Dana's Sealing Products Group, said the purchase gives Dana an opening to the "Mercosur" sealing-products market, which includes Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, and Uruguay. He said the move was consistent with Dana's global strategy for growing its core component businesses abroad. "Stevaux has an excellent reputation in Brazil," remarked Cedomir Eterovic, president of Dana South America. "Combining this company with Dana's other sealing-product operations will provide a great deal of synergy and significant benefits for our customers." Stevaux has a plant in Sao Paulo and derives about 60% of its sales from the aftermarket, 25% from OEMs, and 15% from exports.
Volvo Truck building Down Under. Volvo Truck Australia plans to expand its truck plant in Brisbane, which was the first truck-building facility in the country to gain ISO 9001 certification. "Our Australian assembly plant is now well on its way to what Volvo calls world class," noted the factory's general manager Olov Olsson. The facility has been operated by Volvo for 25 years and has built some 20,000 trucks for Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia, and other Asian-Pacific markets. In Australia, Volvo is ranked sixth in truck sales with a market share of 5%.