President-elect Donald Trump applauded Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV and Ford Motor Co. for announcing new investments in the USA, using his Twitter account on Monday to deliver a rare compliment instead of criticizing his opponents. "Trump said America comes first, and, 'I want jobs in the U.S.' That makes a lot of sense [to] us - a lot of countries in the world want to promote [themselves] first".
"They are all a little nervous about being a target, and they are all certainly interested in some clarity", said Michelle Krebs, a senior analyst for Autotrader who is at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
- TRUMP EFFECT: President-elect Donald Trump and his Twitter threats to tax Mexican auto imports were the talk of the show.
Trump has threatened to impose a border tax on vehicles made in Mexico and shipped to the U.S.in an effort to force companies to build cars in the U.S. Fiat Chrysler has been searching for a partner to build its small cars while it focused on making bigger vehicles like Jeeps.
Marchionne wanted to get out the news about adding jobs and investment in the United States in case the company encountered more criticism from Trump, a person familiar with the situation said on Sunday.
" "I remember a conversation you and I had a few years ago about saying are we going to let silicon valley take all this and why should they", said Ford, Jr".
Other auto companies have used the show to trumpet investments in USA manufacturing.
Since 2009, the industry has enjoyed a surge of demand following a major recession and United States government-backed bankruptcies of General Motors Co. and Chrysler.
Ford last week cancelled plans to build a 1.6-billion-dollar small-car plant in Mexico. "We will always have an SUV and a sedan" on the same production line, he said.
Barring any significant policy changes, the Center for Automotive Research projects that US share of North American automotive production will fall to 58% by 2020, down from the previous all-time low of 63% a year ago. Ford announced the return of the Bronco, the rugged SUV - and O.J. Simpson chase vehicle - which was last sold in 1996. However, people close to the company say an upgraded battery pack could boost that range to 300 miles on a full charge, while still boasting a competitive price of $35,000.
"Obviously whenever there is a new administration coming, particularly in the second-largest auto market in the world, everyone is anxious and everyone is listening - that's predictable", Ghosn began.
In an nearly static year individual vehicle makers' gains were modest, but Jeep's 6.1 per cent growth is good and Jaguar managed to nearly double its USA sales to 31,243.