©2016 Michigan Economic Development Corporation

Michigan Economic Development Corporation Seeds the Global Automotive Institute

Tuesday, August 07, 2001

Jennifer Kopp
(517) 335-4590

Institute Dedicated to Joining National and International OEMs and Suppliers

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) announced its support for the creation of a Global Automotive Institute today.This institute, a high-level think tank for the industry, will facilitate discussions between automotive industry leaders concerning global policies and research that require innovative solutions.The institute will be the only organization to bring national and international original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and suppliers together focusing specifically on policy development.

The Global Automotive Institute, conceived by the late Heinz Prechter, former chairman and founder of ASC, Incorporated, will bring together specialized policy, research and manufacturing organizations.It will aid in policy formulation, technology implementation and productivity improvement through better communications and collaborative research.The focus of the Global Automotive Institute includes providing a:

  • platform for senior executive relationship building among all sectors of the industry;
  • mechanism for developing high-priority policy initiatives;
  • means for coordinating pre-competitive global research;
  • and an opportunity for discussion of global issues and dissemination of research results.

“This institute was the brainchild of Heinz Prechter who recognized that advances in the automotive industry have led to increasingly complex and global concerns, such as fuel efficiency and the industry’s environmental impact,” said Doug Rothwell, president and CEO of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. “Locating this institute in Michigan recognizes that we are the brainpower center of the world automotive industry.It will provide a place for the world’s automotive leaders to build relationships and develop innovative solutions to the challenges facing the sector.The automotive industry is arguably one of the nation’s leading technology industries and this institute will give it a more visible platform to advance its progress in developing future technological breakthroughs.”

The MEDC is expected to provide seed money to this institute for startup operations.The Center for Automotive Research (CAR) is charged with the development of the institute under the guidance of a Board of Directors that will include automotive executives and the MEDC.Initially, the institute will be staffed and hosted by CAR.

The Global Automotive Institute will host an annual forum to identify strategic issues facing the international automotive industry and to assist in determining research priorities.

"We are humbled by the opportunity to participate in the formation and management of the Global Automotive Institute,” said David Cole, director of the Center for Automotive Research.“Heinz Prechter was a true visionary and dedicated champion of our global industry. Our goal is to complement existing automotive organizations and help bring the industry together, in what will undoubtedly be a challenging and turbulent future."

The Center for Automotive Research (CAR) is within the Environmental Research Institute of Michigan (ERIM) in Ann Arbor, MI.CAR conducts research in significant issues related to the future direction of the global automotive industry and organizes and conducts forums of value to the automotive community.ERIM is a non-profit collaborative innovative community dedicated to the discovery, development and application of scientific knowledge for the benefit of society throughout the world.

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation, a partnership between the state and local communities, promotes smart economic growth by developing strategies and providing services to create and retain good jobs and a high quality of life.