WardsAuto estimates overseas-based carmakers will continue to shift more sourcing to North American factories.
That would make 2014 3.9 percent above the 15.6 million light vehicles forecast for 2013, unchanged from a month ago. According to WardsAuto, carmakers, particularly those based overseas, have been increasing North American sourcing for several years. But 2014 will see a big leap, especially because many of the models being added currently are supplied solely from abroad.
In 2014, WardsAuto expects Toyota to add production of a Lexus model at its Georgetown, KY, plant and a Toyota car at Blue Springs, Massachusetts. Volkswagen is seen adding a currently imported vehicle to the mix at its Puebla, Mexico, plant.
A new cross/utility vehicle will come from Mazda’s greenfield site in Salamanca, Mexico, in 2014. However, because the CUV is an all-new product, it mostly is displacing production, not creating a big net gain. There will also be five all-new models imported by Daimler, Honda, Nissan and Mazda. WardsAuto forecasts 331,000 units in 2014 will come from these first-timers.