WardsAuto Podcast: Managing the Transition From ICE to BEV For Fun and Profit

Martin Fisher, head of ZF North America and WardsAuto columnist John McElroy discuss electrification in the auto industry.

Wards Staff

June 15, 2023

In the third episode of the WardsAuto Podcast, we discuss the challenges to automakers and suppliers in managing the transition from an industry centered on the internal-combustion engine to one that is centered on electrification.

We talk with Autoline Editor-in-Chief and WardsAuto columnist John McElroy about the big picture facing legacy companies such as Ford, General Motors, Stellantis, Toyota, Honda and others, as well as the big issue of how quickly customers are likely to adopt battery-electric vehicles.

We also speak with Martin Fisher, the head of ZF North America and a member of the ZF Board of Management at the company’s German headquarters. ZF is a leading, global Tier 1 supplier, and long known to be a crucial and dynamic partner to automakers, railroads, aviation companies and makers of mining and agriculture vehicles. In so many ways, ZF is at the hub of this transition to electrification. ZF is also a major supplier for autonomous driving systems and more.

The company counts BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Volkswagen Group and Stellantis among its customers.

Fisher speaks to us about ZF's  big issues and moves:

  • Its existing and growing business in the BEV era with electric motors, inverters and gearing.

  • The global war for talent and how it is competing with OEMs and tech companies.

  • Its strategy and pace for gradually converting factories dedicated to ICE business to that of EV business.

  • Investment in its own semiconductor operation to protect its supply chain.

  • Staying critical and relevant to its OEM customers as many grapple with how much to develop in-house versus buying from companies such as ZF.

You can click on the logo, which takes you to the podcast episodes, or you can find them on the major podcast platforms including Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Pandora, Stitcher and more.

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