En­thu­si­asm driv­ing Carr

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Front Page -

KIM Carr is the new god­fa­ther of the Aus­tralian mo­tor in­dus­try, the man you def­i­nitely want on your side.

Se­na­tor Carr is the most im­pres­sive politi­cian I have met on car busi­ness since the late Se­na­tor John But­ton in the early 1980s.

But­ton set the orig­i­nal re­view agenda for the car busi­ness and now Carr is driv­ing the mo­tor in­dus­try in the 21st cen­tury with a clear pic­ture, in­cred­i­ble en­ergy, and a gen­uine un­der­stand­ing of what it’s all about.

His en­thu­si­asm was ob­vi­ous this week as he helped open a new pro­duc­tion line at Hella in Men­tone, which will sup­ply lamps for the up­date of the Toy­ota Camry and Au­rion this year.

‘‘I’m only here as eye candy to­day, and I’ll let our hosts tell you about the plant and what it means for Hella, Toy­ota and Aus­tralia,’’ Carr says.

‘‘But I can’t pass up this op­por­tu­nity to re-af­firm the Gov­ern­ment’s cen­tral mes­sages about man­u­fac­tur­ing.

‘‘First, that we want Aus­tralia to be a coun­try that makes things. And, sec­ond, that we want it to be a coun­try that makes cars.’’

That is great news for all in the mo­tor in­dus­try and also Aus­tral- ians who share a com­mon his­tory wrapped around the abil­ity of the au­to­mo­bile to con­quer the coun­try’s vast dis­tances.

Carr has found money and sup­port for the in­dus­try but stress- es com­pa­nies must also work to­gether as part of his new ‘‘Car Plan’’.

‘‘The suc­cess of any in­dus­try de­pends on what com­pa­nies do to­gether — how much they can rely on each other and how closely they col­lab­o­rate,’’ he says.

‘‘If any­one wants to know what a vig­or­ous, creative and com­pet­i­tive Aus­tralian com­po­nent sec­tor would look like — well, it would look like this.

‘‘Hella de­liv­ers the in­puts Toy­ota needs, at the right price, to the right stan­dard and — as Toy­ota has taught ev­ery man­u­fac­turer in the world to say—‘just in time’.’’

It took the Ger­man-owned lighting spe­cial­ist just nine months to get its new Kaizen line op­er­a­tional and global boss Dr Juer­gen Behrend says the ben­e­fits will flow well be­yond the two found­ing part­ners.

He says: ‘‘What we have learned with Toy­ota will also ben­e­fit our other cus­tomers, like Ford and Holden.’’

New line: (from left) Hella chair­man and pres­i­dent Dr Juer­gen Behrend, Se­na­tor Kim Carr and Toy­ota Aus­tralia pres­i­dent Max Ya­suda.

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