Manufacturing Economy


The auto industry is America’s largest exporter. Over the past six years, automakers and suppliers have exported over $775 billion worth of vehicles and parts. They beat the next best performing sector (aerospace) by $125 billion. Last year alone, automakers and suppliers out-exported the aerospace industry by $6 billion.

Raw Materials and Parts:

The U.S. auto industry is one of the largest consumers of domestic raw materials and parts. Last year, automakers sold more than 17 million cars in the U.S., and each contained between 8,000 to 12,000 parts, using more than 3,000 pounds of iron, steel, rubber, glass and semiconductors. Approximately 734,000 Americans work at the plants, offices and research labs that produce those parts and materials.

American Research & Development:

Designing those 8,000 to 12,000 auto parts and helping put them together makes autos among the most engineering-intensive industries in the world. In fact, seven out of the world’s top 25 corporate investors in research and development are automakers. FCA US, Ford and General Motors each invest more each year on research and development than HP, Boeing, and AT&T – and 80 cents of every dollar they invest in research and development is spent here in the U.S. Thanks largely to this investment, nearly one in 10 engineers and scientists in private sector R&D work for an automaker or auto supplier.

Market Share vs. Jobs Share vs. Parts Share




  • Feb 18 2016

    Chevy Launches Unconventional Ad For Malibu, Cruze

    Written by Michael Martinez | Posted on The Detroit News

    General Motors Co.’s Chevrolet brand has launched an unconventional ad campaign for its 2016 Malibu and Cruze.

    The brand tapped Michigan filmmaker Sam Raimi to direct a 60-second trailer that will be played in movie theaters nationwide for the next six months. The trailer has a horror-film vibe as a female character goes to open a door in a presumably haunted house before a voice tells her to stop and leave, followed by a narrator asking “Wouldn’t it be nice to have a warning before bad things happen?”

    Filed Under: Manufacturing Economy
  • Feb 18 2016

    Super Duty Rescues Big Rig From New York Snowstorm

    Written by Michael Martinez | Posted on The Detroit News

    Tuesday snowstorm in Rochester, New York, dumped dozens of inches of snow onto the Interstate 490 expressway, sending cars spinning and tractor trailers into ditches.

    But the rough winter weather wasn’t enough to stop a Ford Super Duty.

    Reporter Cristina Domingues and her camera crew at Time Warner Cable News in Rochester captured video of Chris Johnson, a welder from nearby Byron, pulling a stranded big rig in what appeared to be a 2003 model year F-Series Super Duty King Ranch with a two-tone paint job.

    Filed Under: Manufacturing Economy
  • Feb 16 2016

    Ford Plans to Add Four SUVs Globally in Next Four Years

    Written by Rick Popely | Posted on Chicago Tribune

    Ford Motor Co. will add four new SUVs to its global lineup by 2020 to serve what it sees as a dramatic and ongoing shift away from passenger cars.

    Mark LaNeve, Ford's vice president of sales and marketing, announced the plans Thursday at the Chicago Auto Show. LaNeve said SUV sales have nearly doubled in the U.S. since 2010, and the growth is driven by consumer preference, not by low gas prices.

  • Feb 16 2016

    Ram Gives The Power Wagon A New Look For 2017

    Written by Justin Cupler | Posted on InsideCarNews

    If you grew up in my era, you are quite aware of the Power Wagon from Dodge. Well, the Dodge Ram may be dead, but the Power Wagon is still very much a part of the Ram brand, and it continues into 2017 with a refreshed look paired with the off-road capabilities we expect.

    Filed Under: Manufacturing Economy
  • Feb 16 2016

    Why The 2017 Cadillac XT5 SUV Is Huge For General Motors

    Written by John Rosevear | Posted on The Motley Fool

    Luxury crossovers are white-hot. Cadillac's XT5 is the first of several all-new Cadillac crossovers that will seek to boost GM's share of this highly profitable market.

    What's happening: General Motors said this week that its new 2017 Cadillac XT5 crossover SUV will have a starting price of $38,995 when it goes on sale in the U.S. in April.

    Filed Under: Manufacturing Economy