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China invasion: Manufacturing assault from overseas giant now targets U.S. auto industry

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Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:

The American responsible for the plan to import cars made in China “contends he will field cars, made by Chinese automaker Chery, that will be at least 30 percent cheaper than the competition, including a sedan to compete with the vaunted BMW 3 Series that will cost about $19,000, almost half the BMW 3 Series' starting price.”

Even with lax environmental standards for factories, cheap Chinese parts (that are being made there thanks to American automakers looking for cheap parts themselves), and the Chinese currency advantages…. will these cars be competitive? Is it really worth the transportation and supply chain costs to import cars from China? How is it that Toyota is able to build MORE factories in North America to get closer to the customer, while this guy wants to move cars half way around the world? If this is truly economical for them (lowest total supply chain cost), I will really be worried for the future of our manufacturing profession in this country.

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Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and speaker who has worked in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. He is author of the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, as well as The Executive Guide to Healthcare Kaizen. His most recent book is an anthology titled Practicing Lean that benefits the Louise H. Batz Patient Safety Foundation, where Mark is a board member. Mark is also the VP of Improvement & Innovation Services for the technology company KaiNexus.

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