Despite record figures, Mexico’s auto production remains almost flat in April
The production of light vehicles in Mexico remained almost flat during last April totaling 290,981 units. Although the difference is only 0.3% higher than in the same month of 2017, it represents a record figure for one month of April, according to the most recent data from the Mexican Automotive Industry Association (AMIA).
In the first four months of the year the production of the plants established in the country was of 1,254,197 vehicles, which represents a 0.2% decrease or 2,873 fewer cars than in the same period of 2017. The result is due in part to the adjustment of inventories carried out by automakers in the United States, the main market for cars manufactured in Mexico, and model changes such as the all-new Jetta, which generally causes a slowdown in the production chain.
The AMIA data refers that General Motors manufactured 69,684 units in April, 32.5% more than in same month of previous year. Meanwhile, Nissan production fell 20.3% to 48,972 vehicles.
Volkswagen reported production of 33,305 vehicles, down 14.2%. The plant located in Puebla manufactured 111,524 units during the first four months of the year, 28.7% less than the one reported a year earlier, of 156,484 vehicles.
VW production in the first four months of 2018 was led by the Tiguan SUV, which totaled 55,846 units; followed by the New Jetta model, of which 28,847 vehicles have been produced. Production in the Golf family – which includes all of its variants – reported from January to April a cumulative production of 15,621 units, while the Beetle and Beetle Cabriolet models totaled 11,210 vehicles.
Audi built 16,657 units, a 39.8% hike compared to April 2017. Total production in the first four months was 62,554 units, which meant a skyrocketing 77.7% increase.
Kia Motors Mexico produced 21,182 units in April, up 42.8%, while Toyota reported an increase in production of 43.5% with the addition of 17,211 units.
Regarding the export of vehicles, in an unprecedented way, the AMIA reported a preliminary figure of 259,525 units, due to the fact that Nissan did not provide its April data. With no explanations about the decision of the Japanese automaker, Eduardo Solis, president of AMIA, said that Nissan represents 25% of the total exports of Mexico. Based on Nissan exports figures from April 2017, Solis estimates that total Mexican auto exports grew 8.1% during last month.
When asked about the decision, Nissan spokesmen only told to local press that they are working on a new process to collect monthly sales and production data for Mexico.
Among the manufacturers that did report their exports is General Motors, which nearly doubled its shipments with a 98.5% jump, going from 43,974 vehicles in April 2017 to 87,273 units a year later. It’s worth noting that a year ago, GM was about to begin production of the all-new Chevrolet Equinox at two Mexican facilities.
Audi increased exports of its Q5 model by 53.9% last April, from 11,331 to 17,435 units. Toyota also ramped up its exports at a rate of 43.5%, shipping 17,433 cars in April, compared to 12,146 last year.
KIA exports increased 38.4% last April totaling 14,992 units, while Ford was one of the few manufacturers that reported decreases with 17,859 units, 35.5% less compared to the 27,697 cars exported a year ago.