Your Car Is Made in Mexico?

In the past six years, Mexico has gone from being the ninth largest exporter of cars to fourth. Germany, Japan, and South Korea are ahead of them. Se habla espanol?

This year alone, Mexico has made and exported over 2 million cars and one in 10 cars sold in the USA was made there. New York taxis comprise of Nissan cars, all made in Mexico. Mexico is even exporting cars to China. What happened to Detroit, Michigan?

Low cost manufacturing has happened, that is what. VW, Honda, GM, Mazda, Fiat, Mercedes, Nissan all have plants in Mexico and all are planning to expand. VW\Audi will spend $1.3 billion in Mexico for their car plants. Mexican workers work longer hours and earn $40 a day, are below Detroit, which cannot even compete. Basically, $5 hr. In China, workers in auto plants make $3 hr. The worker in Detroit earns $20+ hr. Besides costs, auto makers are building in Mexico because it is next to their largest market- the USA and because of the popularity of compact and sub-compact cars.

VW has the largest plant in North America in Puebla, where they make 2500 cars daily. VW plans to spend $550 million for another plant in Silao, which will supply engines to the US plant in Tennessee. In 1996, Nissan opened its first plant in Cuernavaca and another one in Aguascalientes (hot waters). Nissan now has 15,000 workers and making 600,000 cars a year. The plant operates nearly 24 hrs. daily for six days a week. Quality is has high as their Japanese imports. The Sentra is made in Mexico. Honda is building another plant in Celaya. Pirelli tires just opened a new $400 million plant in Durango. The Japanese are also building a steel plant near the VW plant and numerous auto part plants are making key parts there.

The next time you buy a car, it was probably made in Mexico, not Detroit, not Germany, not Japan. El carro es muy bueno, senor!

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