Despite being a Japanese company, Mazda Chairman Takashi Yamanouchi called its new North American facility in Mexico, Mazda’s “most important global strategic base.”
The newly-opened assembly factory in Salamanca, Mexico will have an annual production of 230,000 vehicles when it reaches full capacity. This facility is so important that Yamanouchi even said “the very future of the company hinges” on its success.
This new plant will allow Mazda to hedge against foreign exchange rates that hurt Japanese exports, tap into new markets, and provide a low-cost manufacturing base. This will be Mazda’s only North American manufacturing site. It previously used a site in Flat Rock, Michigan, but stopped production there in 2012.
Currently, the facility is producing the Mazda3 sedan and employs about 3,000 people. It is expected to reach full capacity by the end of March 2016, and by then, it will also produce the Mazda2 hatchback and a similar model for Toyota.
Here at Bakersfield Mazda we are excited to see Mazda making North America such an important part of the company’s global strategy and hope to see Mazda grow even more.