Southern States Draw Auto Makers
Houston, TX - For close to 100 years Detroit, Michigan has been the heart of the United States automobile industry. In recent years, some of that focus has been moving south, deep south. Automobile manufacturers such as BMW, Mercedes, and Nissan have built major manufacturing and assembly plants in Mississippi, Tennessee, and South Carolina, bringing millions of dollars to the state economies in the process. In addition, word on the street has it that other manufacturers such as Volvo, DaimlerChrysler, Toyota, and Hyundai are also looking for new plant locations in the Deep South in the near future.
Investments such as these have revitalized the economies of numerous towns in southern states. Due to the supply needs of automobile manufacturing operations, literally hundreds of parts suppliers have also built or are building plants in the Deep South to maintain a proximity to the plants they support.
While traditional American auto-makers such as Ford and General Motors (GM) are maintaining their power base in the Midwest, foreign automakers are taking advantage of the hefty tax incentives nontraditional auto-manufacturing states are willing to offer to attract major businesses.
If the other foreign automakers that are rumored to be considering setting up operations in the South do establish those facilities, the balance of automotive manufacturing power may indeed move below the Mason-Dixon line and set up operations among the cotton fields and slower lifestyle of the South. Billions of dollars and thousands of jobs are at stake here and the southern states are showing they can stand toe-to-toe with the big northern states.