The first two months of 2018 have brought mixed results to the Mexican and global automotive industries. Some automotive-strong regions have faced FDI deceleration while others continue securing investment projects. However, the inclusion of salaries in NAFTA negotiations could risk Mexico’s cost competitiveness. International trade has seen better weeks, as well. Exemptions to US tariffs on steel imports coming from Canada, Mexico, the EU and other regions could only be temporary.

Electric vehicles were a trending topic this week after Chinese businessmen and Mexican investors signed collaboration agreements to bring EV production to the country. The EV hype has also and the evolution of more affordable models has also boosted competition between steel and aluminum.

2011 Jeep Compass by Fiat-Chrysler Automobiles. CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Mexico’s Highlights

The Jeep Compass was the most produced and exported SUV in Mexico in the first two months of 2018.

Nissan, Volkswagen, GM, Toyota and Kia are the five best-selling automotive companies in Mexico.

Alexander Dennis is the company that manufactured and imported the double-decker buses operating in Line 7 of Metrobús

Necessary Infrastructure

Yusen Logistics announces Customs Bounded Warehouse in the Bajio. It will enable customers to store cargo without having to pay taxes immediately.

Logistics center for Volkswagen and Audi vehicles in Puebla will be built and finished in 2H19.

Trade and Investment Challenges, Opportunities

Exemptions to tariffs on steel imports to the US from Mexico, Canada, the EU and other countries are temporary.

Including salaries in the methodology to calculate regional content is a “perverse” proposal according to industry leaders.

If automotive regional content were increased, Mexico would benefit the most due to its low production and labor costs.

Market re-accommodation, NAFTA-related uncertainty and investment diversification cause deceleration of FDI in Queretaro.

Up to 11 automotive FDI projects have been registered in Nuevo Leon by the state’s Ministry of Economy and Labor.

Innovations in Urban Mobility

BMW studies the possible launch of a car-sharing service in Mexico City, similar to Ecobici.

Asian e-mobility company Grab buys Uber’s business in South East Asia.

Electric Vehicles Changing the Automotive Game

Chinese businessmen and Mexican investors will sign an agreement to bring production of EVs.

Aluminum and steel compete over electric vehicle market as automakers move toward heavier-but-cheaper metals to collocate more inexpensive EVs in larger markets.

Nissan to give EV batteries a new life after their peak performance.

Renault looks forward to selling low-cost EVs in Latin America and other regions.

Waymo to buy up to 20,000 electric sedans from Jaguar-Land Rover.

Accidents in California Hit Electric and Self-Driving Vehicles

Uber will not renew its permit to test autonomous vehicles in California following a fatal accident that involved a pedestrian and a driverless vehicle.

Value of Tesla shares drop after the fatal accident in California that involved a Model X working on autopilot.

 

Don’t forget to follow us on twitter at @mexautomotive and @mexautomotriz for the latest industry news.

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