Automotive News Canada - August 2023 - 26

26
* AUGUST 2023
80,000 square feet and one huge mural
CONTINUED FROM PAGE 3
showroom with reception area is flanked by a row of
sales offices. The dealership employs 84 people, including
24 technicians and 10 sales staff, and " we're looking
for more techs, " Pattemore said. He
declined to disclose the cost of the dealership.
Construction began in 2021.
The showroom opens onto a spacious
customer waiting area dominated by a
mural painted by noted Tsuut'ina artist
Keegan Starlight, who also designed the
dealership's " Thunderbird " logo.
Ford is " thrilled this has happened, "
Goodman said, " and we're very proud to
have Reg [Pattemore] as a partner and
thankful to the Tsuut'ina nation. "
SCAN TO
READ THE
BACKSTORY ON
THE TAZA PARK
DEVELOPMENT
At the grand opening, Chief Ray Whitney extended a
welcome.
" The way it has turned out has been incredible, and
I truly appreciate
the great working
relationship. "
The mural fell
outside Ford's
dealership-design
guidelines, but
approval was not
difficult, involving
several steps
before getting the
green light from
headquarters in
the United States,
Goodman said.
The mural is
intended to blend
the present, past
and future while
paying homage to
Ford, Indigenous
people and
Calgary
* No future tax issues
with the City of Calgary
* Ring road allows easy customer
access from anywhere in
Calgary
nature, Starlight
said. The large
mural took three
weeks to create in
acrylic-on-canvas
" with some airbrush
work. "
It depicts two
native dancers
and a tepee,
which highlight
WHY METRO MOVED
Metro Ford relocated to
the Taza development on
Tsuut'ina land from its
longtime location in central
Calgary.
* Supportive landlord-tenant
relationship
* Readily accessible land
at a reasonable cost
* Room for a large dealership
* Ninety-plus years prepayable
lease term
* Ready market from
underserved southwest
The showroom at Metro Ford is 5,000 square feet
(460 square metres) and is flanked by a row of sales
offices.
Artist Keegan Starlight " did a brilliant job adding
Indigenous aspects " to Metro Ford's former
" Thunderbird " logo, said Assistant General Manager,
Liam Pattemore.
standing of what they wanted and I wanted and reached
a middle ground. "
The artist " did a brilliant job adding Indigenous
aspects to the old Thunderbird theme, " Liam Pattemore
said.
the Tsuut'ina heritage. There is also an old Ford pickup
that belonged to Starlight's father, with the new
Metro logo as its licence plate. Mountains, trees and
Metro Ford's 44-bay service area includes six
heavy-duty hoists for large trucks and four hoists for
electric vehicles.
When it came to the mural, " We had things we wanted
to highlight, and [Starlight] had his ideas. I think we
just loved the colours and how he paid homage to the
Metro past and to the Indigenous history on the land. "
Native involvement was present throughout stages of
the construction, which began in 2021, with ceremonies
to ensure success of the venture for both Metro Ford
and Taza. Those included a smudging ceremony, which,
according to Indigenous tradition practised by many
North American tribes, is intended " to purify the body,
mind, heart of anyone who enters the ceremonial area. "
- ANC
Confusion over Ford's EV plans linked to sharp slide in supplier relations
CONTINUED FROM PAGE 3
Study, which surveyed 715 salespeople from
459 Tier 1 suppliers, tracked supplier sentiment
about six of the largest automakers
in North America: Ford, General Motors,
Honda, Nissan, Stellantis and Toyota.
The annual survey yields a ranking of
those automakers based on a point system
of multiple issues concerning how their
suppliers perceive business dealings with
their purchasing departments. Among
them: whether automaker purchasing officials
communicate in a timely fashion and
whether suppliers feel they are given an
opportunity to make a profit.
Toyota again finished as the customer
with the best working relationship with its
suppliers, though its score dipped slightly
from a year earlier. Nissan, meanwhile,
overtook Ford as No. 4 on the list, as Ford's
score fell by 23 points from a year earlier,
the biggest decline of any automaker.
CONFUSION OVER EV STRATEGY
The drop is explained by what suppliers
called confusion over what Ford's long-term
electrification strategy means for them,
Andrea said. In 2022, the automaker split its
EV business, called Ford Model e,
from its traditional gasoline-vehicle
business, now called Ford Blue.
" When they went to the Model
e and Ford Blue, suppliers, rightly
or wrongly, were confused by
how they should interpret that, "
Andrea told sibling publication
Automotive News. " That means if
they weren't pegged for Model e
business, they were wondering if
that meant they're being completely
dis-sourced. "
EV PARTS
Clarity around electrification
strategies and where automakers
plan to source EV components is
crucial to maintaining good relationships
with suppliers, Andrea
said.
long-term plans, Andrea said.
" Even though there's still tremendous
uncertainty, there is certainly
more clarity there now, " he
said.
Marlo Vitous
took over
last year as
Stellantis'
North
GM, for example, made significant
progress during the past year
by communicating better with suppliers
about its long-term strategy
regarding its Ultium battery architecture
and EV manufacturing footprint.
GM ranked first among the six automakers
as it relates to communication surrounding
American
senior vicepresident
purchasing
and
supply
chain and is
credited with
improving
supplier
relations.
PHOTO:
STELLANTIS
Stellantis made the biggest yearover-year
gain, with a score 17
points higher than its performance
in the 2022 study. While Stellantis
still ranks last in the group by a significant
margin, its improvement
was largely driven by the company's
efforts to operate with more
transparency, Andrea said.
He said Marlo Vitous, who
took over as the company's North
American purchasing chief in May
2022, has made it her goal to " get
out and communicate and to be
more accessible " to the supply base.
" The thing we'll be watching is if
they can put together two years of
improvement back to back, to try to
get more momentum on communication, "
Andrea said.
The study captures North
American automaker-supplier relations as
parts makers navigate financial pressures
stemming from inflation, unstable automaker
production schedules, the microchip
shortage and rising interest rates.
A FRUSTRATING DISCONNECT
Those pressures, which began in late 2019
with the onset of COVID-19 and the UAW's
strike at GM, have tested relations between
suppliers and their customers.
Suppliers said there needs to be greater
and more timely communication and transparency
on short-term supply chain disruptions
and on any changes in forecasting,
Plante Moran reported. And it found that
many parts companies are frustrated by
what they see as a disconnect between what
automakers' management says and what
their front-line purchasers ultimately do.
According to the suppliers surveyed, relationships
would improve if automakers
made it a priority to ensure their purchasing,
engineering, manufacturing and quality
teams are all aligned, even when electrification
and parts shortages make things
more difficult, Andrea said.
" We always think of purchasing as an
external conduit to the world, but they're
an internal conduit, too, in terms of getting
the right people in place to solve these
issues. " - ANC
The new Metro Ford dealership, which opened in July
within the Tsuut'ina nation near Calgary, is the brand's
first on native land and " to my knowledge " currently
the largest Ford store in Canada, said Ford Canada
President Bev Goodman. PHOTOS: HARRY PEGG
grassy plains pay homage to the native connection with
nature and Metro Ford's new home.
Starlight said the project began after Metro Ford's
assistant general manager, Liam Pattemore, Reg's son,
contacted him about revamping the dealer logo.
The dealership " asked me to create a mural, " Starlight
said, " and after some negotiation, we reached an under

Automotive News Canada - August 2023

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Automotive News Canada - August 2023

Automotive News Canada - August 2023 - Intro
Automotive News Canada - August 2023 - 1
Automotive News Canada - August 2023 - 2
Automotive News Canada - August 2023 - 3
Automotive News Canada - August 2023 - 4
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