Columbus Business First: Japan’s big 3 automakers built more cars in U.S. than Detroit 3 last year

Dan Eaton
Columbus Business Dispatch
June 1, 2016

Japan’s big 3 automakers built more cars in U.S. than Detroit 3 last year

Three out of every four Japanese cars and trucks sold in the U.S. are built in North America.

So says the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association’s U.S. office which released its 2015 stats on Japan-based automakers working in the U.S. That’s a topic we Central Ohioans know well thanks to Honda Motor Co., the first Japanese brand to open a U.S. assembly plant, which it did in Marysville back in 1982. Honda now employees more than 14,000 across multiple facilities here, not to mention its supplier network.

The 75 percent figure is up from 12 percent 30 years ago, according to JAMA USA General Director Manny Manriquez.

Honda had only its Marysville motorcycle and auto plants at that point. Its auto production for the year was 238,159. The company built 1.26 million vehicles in the U.S. last year, according to data from trade publication Automotive News.

But the U.S. investment goes beyond Honda (NYSE:HMC).

Here are a few more figures from the association’s research:

  • 3.85 million: units produced in 2015;
  • 417,699: units exported from the U.S. in 2015;
  • $45.4 billion: cumulative investment in the past 40 years;
  • 87,788: direct employees (including manufacturing, R&D, office and other);
  • 60,640: manufacturing employees;
  • 375,143: dealership employees;
  • 462,931: total employees (including dealerships);
  • 26: manufacturing plants;
  • 36: R&D facilities;
  • 17: states with a Japanese auto facility;

I crunched some additional numbers. The Big 3 — Ford Motor Co. (NYSE:F),General Motors Co. (NYSE:GM) and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles — built 6.44 million vehicles in the U.S. in 2015 compared with 3.48 million built here by the three largest Japanese manufacturers — Honda, Toyota Motor Corp. (NYSE:TM) and Nissan Motor Co. But looking at car production only (subtract trucks, sport-utility vehicles and crossovers) and the Japan 3 built more cars in the U.S. than the Detroit 3 last year – 1.75 million to 1.53 million.

Source: Biz Journals

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