Mexico’s relationship with German car production began nearly 50 years ago with output of Volkswagen’s mass-market Beetle. Now it’s becoming a place where high-end BMW, Audi and Mercedes-Benz cars roll out of billion-dollar factories.
By decade’s end, Mexico will claim fourth place worldwide for German luxury output after the carmakers’ home country, China and the U.S., according to estimates compiled for Bloomberg by IHS Automotive consultant Guido Vildozo, surpassing Belgium, Spain and Brazil.
In choosing Mexico for a plant site this year, BMW Group validated the nation’s emergence as an auto-assembly powerhouse from its roots making the iconic Beetle. BMW, Audi and Mercedes have all decided since 2012 to build cars in the country.
“Mexico has become the crossroads of automotive trade for the western hemisphere,” IHS Automotive Managing Director Michael Robinet said. “Mexico has proved it can build a vehicle of any stripe.”