GM Establishing Chinese Research Center

Edward Niedermeyer
by Edward Niedermeyer

Forbes reports GM is creating a China Science Lab at its Shanghai manufacturing facilities where development work will take place on advanced vehicle technologies. GM won’t disclose the extent of its investment in the lab, but has said it will hire 100 employees from China and abroad to form the initial staff. John Du, the former manager of Intel’s China Research Center, will supervise work at the new lab, which will focus on “advanced engine technology, battery cells, safety research, driverless vehicles and light materials.” Which begs the question, has anyone told the Michigan Economic Development Corporation about this? Seriously, this seems like exactly the kind of high tech, green-jobs opportunity that Michigan’s politicians are constantly giving GM massive tax breaks for. Not to mention the raft of federal incentives, bailouts and green car-development initiatives. But, as GM’s Alan Taub puts it, “China has begun emerging as a world class research hub for automotive technology.” That and China has begun emerging as the only thing keeping GM going. Er, except for our federal incentives, bailouts and green car-development initiatives.

Edward Niedermeyer
Edward Niedermeyer

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  • Wsn Wsn on Sep 24, 2009
    Areitu : September 24th, 2009 at 5:26 pm I stand corrected! Hyundai actually licensed Mitsubishi and Mazda technology for their cars. ---- Geely started by licensing Toyota engines. But they started having their own engines around 2000ish.
  • Stu Sidoti Stu Sidoti on Sep 24, 2009

    Quote: Stingray : September 24th, 2009 at 12:41 pm I’m not judging on quality. Let’s see the engineer’s wage: US/EU >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> China R&D consultancies currently use a billable rate of $75/hour for a U.S. based engineer and $35/hour for a Chinese based engineer...Just two years ago, the billable rate for the Chinese engineer was $21/hour while the U.S. based engineer's rate has held steady for years and the disparity between the two rates keeps closing. In India for example, many an offshore R&D facility has found out about the '20%-Jump' reality in which every time a new R&D facility opens up in town, the HR department of the new shop recruits your talented staff by offering them a 20% raise. Eventually, there may be no offshore savings.

  • Ronnie Schreiber Ronnie Schreiber on Sep 25, 2009

    Until the financial meltdown of '08, it was fashionable for car companies to have styling studios in southern California. The usual excuse given was to keep a finger on the pulse of the largest car market (California) in the largest car market (the USA). I don't have a problem with GM having a local R&D facility in the fastest growing automotive market on the planet.

  • Tosh Tosh on Sep 25, 2009

    Technically, reverse engineering is a type of research.