Automotive Engineering - June 2021 - 18

TEARDOWN
TITAN
Munro and an engineer examine
a component. His company also
teaches Lean processes.
A not-invented-here mindset stubbornly remains
among " the hometown guys, " as Munro calls GM and
Ford. In fact, according to an engineering source in
Dearborn, Ford embarked upon its own full-blown
teardown of a Tesla Model Y, months after Munro &
Assoc. concluded its activity and began selling its detailed
report on the vehicle. The Ford study reportedly
has not yet closed.
" What scares the daylights out of me about the
hometown guys is that I don't think they're paying
enough attention to what's really going on competitively, "
Munro said. Ford and GM know the Chinese
cars are well-made. And the Chinese engineers, he
said, " are very interested in everything new that comes
out. Tens of thousands of Chinese watch our videos.
Somebody at Baidu in China takes our videos and
adds subtitles. Our staff at Munro China tell me the
viewership is off the map. Marklines in Japan also
translate us and it gets heavy watch. "
Design for manufacturability (DFM) expert Mike
Booming demand for electronics benchmarking down to the silicon level is
driving demand at Munro & Associates for " inspired workaholic " engineers with
knowledge of electronics product design, costing and manufacturing.
" We've torn down their EVs and asked, 'Why are there so many
cables? Why are you using an old-fashioned inverter? Why are you
using this last-generation battery?' We ask those kinds of questions
and then they don't get back to us, " he said. " Or they reply, 'We've
always done it this way. " By comparison, in 2018 Munro reported the
Tesla Model 3 had " flaws that we would see on a Kia in the '90s. " At
the time, Tesla was struggling to meet early production targets for
the Model 3. " I thought your criticism was accurate, " Tesla boss Elon
Musk told Munro in an interview that aired on Munro Live.
18 June 2021
Oakes, Munro & Associates' VP of business development
and a former GM and Stellantis vehicle engineer,
offered his view of some OEMs' thinking: " We see it as
them trying to solve new problems with old solutions.
And when you want to go fast, you pull a technology
and parts that you're familiar with, " Oakes said.
" They're not willing to invent, because there's no time
for that. And that's probably the greatest hurdle for
the traditional OEMs. How do you solve a new problem
with the old solution? "
Decapitating inverters
Two keys to respect in the competitive-teardown
field are data and detail, an engineering source at
AUTOMOTIVE ENGINEERING
FROM TOP: MUNRO & ASSOC.; LINDSAY BROOKE

Automotive Engineering - June 2021

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