Report: GM plans to cease production of the Sonic, Ford to discontinue the Fiesta

Report: GM plans to cease production of the Sonic, Ford to discontinue the Fiesta

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Both General Motors and Ford have plans to stop making three cars for the U.S. market due to low demand and inferior profit margins, The Wall Street Journal reported (susbscription required) citing internal sources from the automakers. One of those models is currently manufactured in Mexico while production of another ceased last year in the country ahead of this decision.

General Motors is reportedly planning to kill the Chevrolet Sonic while Ford Motor plans to ditch the Fiesta, which represents a double punch to the subcompact cars segment. Ford also plans to discontinue the Taurus sedan, once the best-selling car in the U.S., while GM is also considering ending production of the full-size Impala sedan. In 2017, Sonic sales fell 45.2% to 30,290 units, while Fiesta declined 5.2% to 46,249.

The Ford Fiesta is built at the Cuautitlan Stamping and Assembly Plant near Mexico City, where the Detroit automaker already has confirmed it plans to manufacture an electric crossover once the subcompact car is discontinued.

According to The Wall Street Journal, Ford executives are still considering the future of Fusion, which is also build in Mexico at the Hermosillo Stamping and Assembly Plant in the northern state of Sonora. Local news outlets have reported that Ford plans to build a new SUV in Hermosillo, reportedly the Bronco II, but no official stance on the matter has been made.

Meanwhile, General Motors ceased production of the Chevrolet Sonic at the Ramos Arizpe Complex in August 2017 to consolidate its output in Orion Assembly plant in Orion Township, Michigan. 

The Ramos Arizpe facility now manufactures the Chevrolet Equinox and a hatchback version of the Chevrolet Cruze for global markets. The Orion Assembly plant also builds the Chevrolet Bolt electric vehicles, whose output GM has already said it plans to ramp up due to global demand.

"As we have said, by 2020 trucks and utilities — including their electrified versions — are going to be almost 90 percent of our volume," a Ford spokesperson told CNBC. "Passenger cars, including Fiesta and Taurus, remain an important part of our lineup." 

GM spokesman Tony Cervone said to USA Today that he is not aware of any plans to discontinue the Sonic or Impala.


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