By on May 31, 2018

There’s been quite a bit of the old “he said, she said” as the global trade war between developed nations coalesces. Germany has not covered U.S. President Donald Trump’s trade policy favorably, not that it has much reason to. His new tariffs on imported steel and aluminum has tested relationships with numerous countries and, while it isn’t the biggest exporter of metal to the United States, Germany has something to lose. Likewise, proposed duties on passenger vehicles have sincerely rubbed Deutschland the wrong way.

However, the issue was further complicated this week after a gossipy report surfaced claiming Trump told French President Emmanuel Macron in April that he would continue hampering the European auto manufacturers until there are no Mercedes-Benz vehicles driving in America. 

Reported initially by German outlet Wirtschaftswoche (Economic Week) and followed by Reuters, the article claims several unnamed European and U.S. diplomats verified the story. In fact, the quotes given were taken from an interview conducted moments after his inauguration in 2017.

“When you walk down Fifth Avenue, everybody has a Mercedes-Benz parked in front of his house,” Trump said in the earlier interview with Bild. “You were very unfair to the U.S.A. It isn’t mutual. How many Chevrolets do you see in Germany? Not many, maybe none, you don’t see anything at all over there. It’s a one-way street.”

Wirtschaftswoche noted that an import duty of 25 percent would depress German GDP by roughly 0.16 percent. “No country would fear higher absolute losses through such an inch than Germany,” said Gabriel Felbermayr, director of the Ifo Center for Foreign Trade.

The outlet also said Trump’s reasoning for the tariff proposals were ill-conceived, suggesting he might not realize that BMW and Mercedes-branded cars built in the U.S. are also subject to the European Union’s 10 percent import fee. Of course, the same reasoning would apply to cars imported by Ford and General Motors under U.S. tariffs.

Since Macron’s administration declined to comment on the report, whatever Trump told him is unverified. However, this hasn’t stopped the article from being cited by numerous outlets — many of which are far bigger than Wirtschaftswoche and neglected to mention the claims would have benefited from additional corroboration. The outlets’ coverage of the U.S. president has been overwhelmingly unfavorable in the past. But we’re not ready to call its claims “fake news,” either.

Depending on how the United States’ trade investigation into vehicle imports goes, these new tariffs could become a real thing, unsettling the auto industry quite a bit. But it won’t stop German cars from populating American roadways. Both Mercedes-Benz and BMW have factories in the country already. All in, German manufacturers build roughly 800,000 vehicles annually within the United States. However, according to the industry group Verband der Automobilindustrie, its members also exported 657,000 foreign-built vehicles into North America last year.

While Trump proposed ludicrously high auto tariffs during his campaign, the issue has only come up in earnest within the last few months. Germany has been critical of his proposals but seems weary to respond with trade penalties of its own. This could be part of Trump’s strategy. Many claim his wildly aggressive trade proposals simply exist so he can negotiate for what he really wants at a later date. No country wants to become involved in an economic war with the United States.

There are holes to poke in that theory, though. Both Mexico and Canada (which sends more steel into the U.S. than anyone) were expected to receive amnesty from Trump’s steel tariffs. The very threat of the fee was presumed to be a negotiatory tactic and both countries were given a break from the tax while talks progressed. But the United States Commerce Secretary, Wilbur Ross, said discussions to reduce America’s trade deficit did not go as planned. Now NAFTA members and the EU are subject to 25 percent duty on steel and 10 percent on aluminum.

The president of the European commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, vowed swift retaliation after the announcement. He intends to make a case with the World Trade Organization and fire back with more import fees on American goods. It’s all rather surprising, as Europe and the United States have been close allies for decades at this point.

[Image: Mercedes-Benz]

Get the latest TTAC e-Newsletter!

Recommended

88 Comments on “French President Convinced Trump Wants to Kill German Cars; Steel Tariffs Strike U.S. Allies...”


  • avatar
    Chocolatedeath

    No Trump does not want to kill off all of Germany’s cars. He just wants them built all here so that he can say hey look at me and how great I am.

    • 0 avatar
      TwoBelugas

      I’m sure all the American workers will hate Trump for bringing jobs to the US. I can just hear them now, chanting “Trump Collusion with Germans! We don’t want the jobs!!”

      • 0 avatar
        Astigmatism

        Jobs? Who said anything about jobs? This is about national security, remember? /sarc

        Actually, if American workers don’t want the jobs, then getting into dumb trade wars with all of our allies is a great place to start. Ditto if American workers want to pay higher prices on just about everything they buy.

        • 0 avatar

          “The implementation of new tariffs on steel and aluminum will disrupt the U.S. oil and natural gas industry’s complex supply chain, compromising ongoing and future U.S. energy projects, which could weaken our national security,” said American Petroleum Institute President and CEO Jack Gerard in a statement.

          You can’t blame Mercedes for being so ubiquitous, especially in NY where it is sponsoring the U.S. Open and the NY Fashion Week. I watched the 2015 Jurassic World movie and I noticed that it was one big product placement for Benz. GM thought that moving Cadillac HQ to NY might help… Catch my drift?

          Having written that, I do think that the U.S. should tariff import cars on the same level as the EU is doing.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      Chocolatedeath,
      So, who’s going to buy these American cars? You need to export.

      The consumer will buy not Fords, GMs or Chrysler. They will buy Korean, Japanese and EU “USA” made cars.

      To the ultra Nationalist on TTAC, is this good for National Security. So what will they do next? Nationalise all overseas manufacturers?

      I really feel sorry for the American majority to have such an idiot at the helm, with a group of like minded goons advising him.

      • 0 avatar
        thornmark

        Your crap country has no auto industry and is run by feces who expect US to take Muslims they refuse to take.

        That last deal was brokered by BO, the joke who got a Nobel for Participation by the European elites because they knew he would sell out the US for cheap praise by their state controlled media.

        • 0 avatar
          Big Al from Oz

          thronmark,
          WTF?

          I don’t understand the logic you have applied.

          Where is this leading to?

          We don’t have an vehicle manufacturing industry because we are only 25 million people with a small market and we (AUS) like the US are very well off. This makes us uncompetitive in T Shirt and other forms of manufacture, ie, vehicles.

      • 0 avatar
        quot;scareyquot;

        The American market should be the Big 2-1/2’s goal. Not exporting. BiGalFromOz is a broken record. GM, Ford, and Chrysler can export from China and Italy. The export market from the U.S. for them is SMALL. Your PM gave Hillary $20 Million. WHY ?

  • avatar
    Sub-600

    Heaven forbid that Trump represent America’s interests, lol. The French and Germans are expected to represent theirs but when Trump does it’s underhanded? Look, international trade is complex, there’s brinksmanship, high balling, and low balling, etc. The EU is no longer dealing with Vichy American Liberal Democrats, bent on making the U.S. pay for some bizarrely perceived wrongdoings. The EU is now dealing with reality, the community organizer is gone, now they’re bargaining with a businessman. One thing I wish Trump would stop doing is asking why there aren’t more Chevrolets in Germany. I’m American and I wouldn’t own one.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      Sub-600,
      Hey, slowdown mate. There is much more than the $$$$’s involved here.

      As TW5 likes to point out US national security is involved. P!ss everyone off as Trump is doing, people will become more removed from what America wants around the world. The US can’t survive on it’s own, it needs Allies and friends and it will not have them.

      Trade between countries is more than dollars, there is much collaboration and reliance on each other. Just look at the complexity in the motor vehicle industry with component manufacture.

      All must work together, and the world will tell America (Trump) to pull his head in soon.

      Trump can cause problems using similar tactics as Russia or North Korea, but at the end of the day a consistent and reliable US is needed. Not this flip flopping and investment reducing floor show.

      So, imagine if you were shopping and you were fncked around as much as Trump is fncking around with other countries would you not find somewhere else to shop.

      I think “Mall USA” is becoming an awkward place to shop and buy product.

      • 0 avatar
        Sub-600

        Al, who funds NATO? Do you think the defense of Europe is free? Nobody wants to pony up and on top of it they want to screw the U.S. on trade? People criticize the U.S. defense budget, and yes billions are blown on wars and proxy wars, but plenty of countries practically get a free ride when it comes to their defense. This is about more than U.S. national security, it’s about a lot of people’s national security.

        • 0 avatar
          Big Al from Oz

          Sub-600,
          Actually NATO is much more than the North Atlantic.

          And, the US is a part of it, it’s not all of it.

          Have a look at many of the conflicts across the world. I think you’ll find many nations (mostly NATO aligned) involved.

          Yes the US contributes a lot to NATO, but the US also has the most to lose and protect.

          Like the Britain of old, the US has been protecting it’s trade. And much of that trade happened to be between the EU, Japan (East Asia) and the US.

          Now as you are finding out the US is shrinking proportionally to the rest of the world and many in the US don’t realise this proportional downsizing will impact the US’es ability to project power and influence.

          This is what scares many in the US. From being totally dominant to having to share. Sharing involves a more competitive environment without the dominance and influence.

          The EU has done one thing correct. It has spent much effort in designing a model of trade regulations that support and facilitate trade between nations. The US never had to do this.

          Now it must to maintain it’s influence.

          • 0 avatar
            MoDo

            Big Al, you can blame your small population but it doesn’t make any sense. Before NAFTA and the Auto Pact, Canada produced their own versions of GM cars. The Beaumont, Acadian, Strato chief, Larentian, Parisienne etc. Some were even exported to south America and the factory ran fine.

            You guys could be doing the same thing, with the one or 2 cars you had even if the factory and suppliers only ran 8 hours a day, it could be made to work.

          • 0 avatar
            Arthur Dailey

            @MoDo, During the same time period and even after, Australia did have a thriving auto industry. The argument can be made that they had more R&D than Canada. Some vehicles manufactured for and designed specifically for the Australian market and with the ‘utes’ even their own sub-category of vehicles.

            As you are well aware Canadian Pontiacs were generally just American spec Chevrolets with Pontiac bodies and brightwork.

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al from Oz

            Arthur,
            The design and engineering aspect of the auto industry Australia continues to provide.

            Australia off shored what we were uncompetitive at and retained what we were good at, vehicle design.

            Where or who manufactures what we design is of little consequence as the high paying, standard of education and education improving jobs remain that don’t require tariffs, chicken tax, different standards/regulations, etc.

            They are real jobs that contribute, even in the US.

      • 0 avatar
        TW5

        @ Big Al from Oz

        “The US can’t survive on it’s own, it needs Allies and friends and it will not have them.”

        Yes, and a father can’t survive without his dependent children drawing from his bank account. If the world does not need the US, why the hell are they whining like entitled princesses?

        The entire G20 global economy is predicated upon making the US consumer buy imports, which requires us to keep our import tariffs low and sign terrible multilateral free trade deals so our own companies can offshore production and then reimport goods. To thwart natural trade rebalancing, foreign central banks plow capital into massive asset bubbles in the US, and then they cry their eyes out, when it causes a Great Recession and the American consumer can no longer afford to buy their junk.

        The current state of the global economy is mass stupidity on an unimaginable scale, and attempts to advocate for the status quo shows how desperate the rest of the world is to remain on US welfare, regardless of how badly it damages their own countries in the long run. Sad.

        • 0 avatar
          Big Al from Oz

          TW5,
          The US is important, but you over state its importance.

          What the US has to sell, even satellites can be bought elsewhere …. and often cheaper.

    • 0 avatar
      Maxb49

      “Heaven forbid that Trump represent America’s interests, lol. ”

      He’s not representing the American consumer’s interests here. It is a plain and simple fact that increasing tariffs reduces competition, product quality, choice, and increases transaction costs. These factor cause inferior products and minimize surplus (read: overall wealth) in the American economy. This is a boneheaded move. End of discussion.

      • 0 avatar
        Sub-600

        You might want to try sleeping with your hands on top of the covers. You’re suggesting Trump is purposely hurting the economy, that was the domain of the Vichy American Liberals who are now busy organizing communities or running “charitable foundations”.

        • 0 avatar
          Maxb49

          “You’re suggesting Trump is purposely hurting the economy,”

          Incorrect. I argued that DJT is making a poor policy decision for the reasons set forth above. Feel free to post a counterargument, otherwise quit wimping out by asserting false dichotomies and false bravado.

    • 0 avatar
      SunnyvaleCA

      One of the problems Trump faces is that he’s trying to undo 30+ years of America-last trade policy in a short timeframe. If the last 4 presidents had even a small fraction of Trump’s America-First gusto, we would be in a better place right now (trading wise) and there would have been much less brinksmanship.

      One thing to remember about USA -vs- EU trade is that the EU’s VAT acts like a large tariff on US-made goods. See, for example: https://www.huffingtonpost.com/ian-fletcher/sorry-but-the-us-does-ind_b_12242314.html The VAT rate differs by country, but here are some examples: Germany 19%, France 20%, Great Britain 20%, Italy 22%, Spain 21%, Sweden 25%.

      • 0 avatar
        Ce he sin

        “One thing to remember about USA -vs- EU trade is that the EU’s VAT acts like a large tariff on US-made goods”

        I’ve seen this repeated over and over again in places like this. Thing is, no matter how often it’s repeated the same applies and I’ll repeat it again: VAT is applied to most goods sold in the EU, especially manufactured goods. It doesn’t make the slightest difference where the goods are made. A US made car is liable to VAT at 19% in Germany. A French made one? 19%. A German made one? Yes, you’ve guessed it.

  • avatar
    lon888

    Figuring that Republicans make up about 90 – 95% of MB/BMW/Audi sales, this makes me laugh my arse off.

    • 0 avatar
      stingray65

      If that is the case, then Audi has been mighty stupid to run those social justice themed Super Bowl ads.

    • 0 avatar
      dal20402

      Bet this varies by model.

      A3/A4 = mostly blue
      A6/A7/A8 = “socially liberal but fiscally conservative” male establishment types (who want nothing to do with tariffs)
      Q3/Q5 = a mix of everyone
      Q7 = a mix of the wives of A6/A7/A8 owners and conventional Republicans

    • 0 avatar
      Sub-600

      I’ve seen several Audi’s with “coexist” and “Feel the Bern” bumper stickers, probably not on their way to RNC functions.

      • 0 avatar
        VW4motion

        This may be surprising in today’s world. But not all conservatives are bigots and live to be ignorant. So maybe a few Audi’s owners do have that “coexist” sticker.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    Well, it seems Trump is in for a bit of a fight. From what I see is the US’es closest Allies, NAFTA and EU are about to tell Trump to fnck off, in politically correct terms.

    He’s apparently going to apply taxes on Canadian and Mexican steel and aluminium.

    I just hope the Nationalist who are screwing over the American people will soon be gone. I just don’t understand how the Republicans can tolerate such a buffoon as Trump.

    Even if this is his style for negotiation, he’s pushing his Allies to do business elsewhere. Now, this will have political implications for the US. If others reject the US, say, on trade with Iran, Russia and even the deal making with North Korea to a degree.

    The EU and others are already making more deals with the Chinese. This will reduce the investment and flow of money gradually into the US.

    Donald Trump better realise America will not be great if people reduce what they buy from America.

    American’s should embarrassed to have such leadership, with a high school level of understanding in geography, economics and most of all “people skills”.

    https://www.news.com.au/world/breaking-news/anger-as-us-hits-allies-with-metal-tariffs/news-story/1f5915119a6e6dcba9ceb07e4461c494

    • 0 avatar
      TW5

      “I just don’t understand”

      We know. You’re living in a world that no longer exists, in which the United States is supposed to understand its place as perpetual welfare provider. We’re not allowed to apply reciprocal tariffs and we’re not supposed to subsidize our industry to compete, and we’re not allowed to have proportional voting rights in multilateral trade deals, and we’re not allowed to make the WTO stop intellectual property theft.

      That world died when our public debt exceeded $4T. But for an eight year occupation of the White House by an insalubrious community organizer, these issues might already have been put to rest.

      • 0 avatar
        waywardboi313

        It is always funny to hear you guys refer to 44 as a mere community organizer without mentioning that the community organizer was also a senator and a Harvard law graduate, and yet 45 was nothing more that a reality TV star shyster and somehow he makes the better candidate to lead or country? Political party aside if I were a betting man I would go for the regular with the law degree and some community skills, not a grifter that was born with a tarnished silver spoon in his mouth with 3 baby mommas! Not sure what you consider a decent man but between the 2 O was far better at just being a man!IJS!

        • 0 avatar
          TW5

          The results speak for themselves. Pay attention. You have a lot to learn.

        • 0 avatar
          Sub-600

          The Kenyan never created a job or met a payroll or anything. He’s been at the taxpayer teat his entire life. He was whisked through Harvard and as far as being a senator is concerned, it wasn’t exactly a challenge to get elected in his district. He was an abject failure as president, his biggest success was Cash For Clunkers. He gave Iraq back to the enemy after it was won, destroyed the healthcare system, and armed the Ayatollah. Nice goin’, 44.

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            As a graduate of Harvard Law, I can tell you that he wasn’t “whisked” through Harvard. He was elected editor-in-chief of the law review, which is more than a full-time job, while also making grades in the top quarter or so of his class, based on blind exams. (And remember that practically everyone who gets in was an A student in college, and that it’s not easy to get selected for law review, which he had to do before he could be voted EIC.)

            I won’t engage on the opinions of his success as president but I wanted to correct the record on this. His record at Harvard Law was quite distinguished.

          • 0 avatar
            Arthur Dailey

            @Sub600: Your use of a pejorative term in reference to a duly elected President is indicative of a preference to use invectives rather than refer to actual facts, and therefore by inference invalidates your comments.

            If you wish to use facts and engage in a constructive dialogue, that would be most welcome.

          • 0 avatar
            Maxb49

            “As a graduate of Harvard Law, I can tell you that he wasn’t “whisked” through Harvard.”

            These people have no idea the effort it takes to get on, or to write on, to law review. I doubt they could make it through B1.1 of the Bluebook.

          • 0 avatar
            ra_pro

            And I am sure you were Rhodes scholar in the top 1% of your class. Oh wait, you couldn’t be that’s liberal bs degree; so more appropriate question for you, have you finished public school and in what grade?

          • 0 avatar
            FreedMike

            “Whisked through Harvard”? Bulls**t. The guy graduated top of his class and edited the law review. For a point of reference, so did the sitting chief justice of the Supreme Court. They don’t just hand that out as a participation prize.

            C’mon, sub. You’re smarter than this.

          • 0 avatar
            Ce he sin

            Let me just adjust that to what you really want to say:

            The black President never created a job or met a payroll or anything.

            There, that’s your issue isn’t it?

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          The mere community organizer was a complete psy-op, which is why so much of him is either questionable or fiction. That was the whole point, they make someone up and see how much of it is actually believed. See also, Tim Osman.

          “We’ll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false”

          -Wm Casey, Director, CIA, Febuary 1981.

          quora.com/Did-CIA-Director-William-Casey-really-say-Well-know-our-disinformation-program-is-complete-when-everything-the-American-public-believes-is-false

          • 0 avatar
            Sub-600

            Lots of doors flew open for Obama, he was in the right place at the right time in America. On the “content of his character” front, CNN reported that African Americans voted 95% for Obama in 2008 and 93% in 2012. Either they knew something the rest of the electorate didn’t or it was what liberals call a “statistical anomaly”, lol. As far as the Supreme Court goes, if you believe Justice Sotomayor got there on merit only, you are mistaken. It’s no different than people who supported Hillary because “it’s time for a woman”. Identity politics are here to stay, unfortunately.

  • avatar

    American cars have come WAY up in the world in recent decades in almost every way, but most German cars remain better from the drivers’ points of view.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      jcwconsult,
      American cars have improved, but they are expensive to manufacture. This does not bode well for export.

      Forcing people to buy American is not the answer. The answer is to produce a competitive product. The Japanese are investing heavily into robotics in auto manufacturing. This must occur in the US as well.

      If the US keeps on the way it’s heading with Luddites in control of the country you will never reach your full potential and be competitive.

      • 0 avatar
        Maxb49

        “Forcing people to buy American is not the answer. The answer is to produce a competitive product.”

        Yep, this is the way it works. American cars only became competitive (referring to recent history) because of the increased competition from reliable and good performing imports. When American cars were the only game in town in the 1970s, we got American cars from the 1970s. People always want to trade the perceived insecurity of market forces for the perceived security of economic rule by fiat. Trouble is, central planning has never worked.

    • 0 avatar
      TwoBelugas

      “most German cars remain better from the drivers’ points of view.”

      Then please explain the horrendous resale value of Mercedes Benz, BMW, and Audi.

  • avatar
    Arthur Dailey

    Engaging in free trade with 3rd world and emerging nations is largely counterproductive and results in the loss of manufacturing and ‘unskilled’ jobs.

    Engaging in free trade with nations with similar standards of living, and/or production costs is generally beneficial for all.

    Engaging in free trade with dictatorships/autocracies only gives them credibility and the funds to enhance their armed forces and enrich the ruling junta members.

    However, engaging in a trade war with your traditional allies, particularly those in Europe, may force them to choose sides. Will Russia open its arms to its former Soviet Bloc nations? Will it offer European nations greater access to its raw materials? Will China provide these nations with markets and cheap merchandise? Will Canada open up its far north and natural resources to Russian and/or Chinese interests? What about Mexico (remember the Red Dawn scenario?).

    And which nation(s) will benefit the most from the dissolution of NATO and the resultant growing isolation of the USA?

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      “And which nation(s) will benefit the most from the dissolution of NATO and the resultant growing isolation of the USA?”

      Things that make you go “hmmmmmm…”

      • 0 avatar
        TW5

        Russia is not kept in check with NATO, and they haven’t been for decades, which is why several NATO members refuse to pay their bills. We keep Russia in check with sanctions and by working with Saudi Arabia to stop Russian manipulation of the oil markets and infrastructure.

        On the other hand, Hillary Clinton sold Russia 20% of the US’ strategic uranium reserves, and our previous president said he would have more flexibility to work with Putin after the 2012 election.

        You’re living in upside down world.

        • 0 avatar
          TwoBelugas

          “Russia is not kept in check with NATO”

          NATO is an fascinating but also perverted follow up to the Crimean War. Given the current state of things in the Anatolian corner of the “coalition”, I never cease to be amazed at how far Europeans will ignore Turkish Neo-Ottomanism and egregious violation of human rights just to spite the Russians.

          Between the continued support of the fundamentalist Turks and NATO’s lopsided policy in the Balkans in favor of allies of the Turks, it’s no wonder NATO had no moral superiority to stand on when it came to the open Russian invasions of Georgia and Ukraine.

          • 0 avatar
            TW5

            @TwoBelugas

            I try not to think about the unsavory military alliance we maintain with neo-Ottoman fundamentalists to spite a Soviet state that no longer exists.

            In Turkey’s defense, they tend to contribute what they owe to the alliance so that’s good, I guess.

        • 0 avatar
          Robbie

          TW5
          “Hillary Clinton sold Russia 20% of the US’ strategic uranium reserves”
          Fact check: FALSE
          https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/hillary-clinton-uranium-russia-deal/

          • 0 avatar
            "scarey"

            sNOPEs is a left-wing propaganda outlet not to be trusted. Hillary and Bill committed TREASON, all approved by Obama, which is TREASON also. Treason is a capital offense, BTW.

    • 0 avatar
      ClutchCarGo

      One might even think that the tariffs were intended to encourage EU countries to soften their sanctions against Russia in order to trade more with them in lieu of the US.

  • avatar
    stingray65

    Europe should just do away with all the higher than US auto tariffs and displacement/weight/emission based taxes that discriminate against American cars. Lets have a level playing field and make everyone happy and take way all political excuses for auto trade-imbalances.

    • 0 avatar
      Ce he sin

      “Europe should just do away with all the higher than US auto tariffs and displacement/weight/emission based taxes that discriminate against American cars.”

      Tariffs, which are only 10% in any case, are optional. There are no tariffs on cars built in Canada or Mexico.

      Not too many displacement or weight taxes these days but there are emissions based ones, intended to reduce CO2 emissions. These discriminate against all high emissions vehicles, no matter where they’re made. You think perhaps that EU and many other countries should do away with encouraging low emissions vehicles, just because the Americans only make large, thirsty vehicles?

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      stingray,
      Even there is one issue you seem to overlook here. That is GM was in the EU and still couldn’t compete. Remember a few months ago or so, GM sold Opel and Vauxhall.

      Why is it Asian and European manufacturers seem to operate more profitably than US manufacturers globally? Asians set up shop in any country and are profitable, the EU is almost as good. The US ……….. not so good.

      I think it has more to do with the way the US manufacturers operate. In the US they are only profitable with the highly protected (25% chicken tax) pickup segment and their pickup truck station wagon siblings.

      Why? So, don’t go around blaming all when the US can’t compete using the SAME controls and regulations as the competition.

      The US is not penalised from that perspective. Yes a 10% import tariff I totally disagree with. But I disagree more with the way in which the US auto industry has been protected. This protection will eventually be the end of US vehicle manufacturing.

  • avatar
    Vulpine

    I wouldn’t be surprised in the least if this were true. Of course, I’m not a fan of Daimler anyway but that doesn’t mean I want them driven out of the country, either.

    • 0 avatar
      TwoBelugas

      I am not seeing an actual quote to the effect of “Chase germans out of the US”, the only direct quote in the article is DT lamenting the state of things.

  • avatar
    Stumpaster

    “When you walk down Fifth Avenue, everybody has a Mercedes-Benz parked in front of his house.”

    I am squinting and transporting myself to the beginning of last century, when there may have been some houses on Fifth Avenue. Not today, so that’s another lie from our village idiot. Maybe what he really means is that everyone should drive a Volga, or a Chaika.

  • avatar
    TW5

    The goal is to apply reciprocal tariffs and non-tariff barriers (if possible) until our trading partners come to the table for bilateral agreements. Our trading partners are reluctant to do because the current tariff imbalance favors them, and some of them have grown accustomed to signing multilateral deals with the US, and the selling out to the highest bidder from outside the agreement.

    NAFTA is a good example, where it seems Mexico and Canada are about as interested in China’s demands regarding NAFTA negotiations as they are with America’s. TPP would have multiplied the problem exponentially.

    For 50 years the United States and the world grew rich from trade liberalization. As time passes, the US is an increasingly smaller piece of the global economy and therefore unable to provide trade welfare to other developed nations.

    Germany, along with China, Japan, Korea, etc need to stop siphoning manufacturing capacity out of the US and capital surplus into our investment banking sector. It’s pointless. No more misallocation of capital. No more Great Recessions built on US real estate bubbles.

    • 0 avatar
      Arthur Dailey

      @TW5: however despite the POTUS’ admitted ‘mistruths’ the USA has a trade surplus with Canada, including in steel.

      So zero subsidies. And the Canadian government against past practice and its own rules allowed US Steel to purchase Canada’s largest steel producer (Stelco), provided US Steel with millions of dollars worth of funding, then sat back as US Steel proceeded to close the majority of Stelco’s steel production, lay-off thousands of workers and severely underfund the pension plan. In effect the Canadian government paid US Steel to close down its Canadian competition. US Steel then sold what was left after the Canadian operations entered ‘bankruptcy protection’.

      https://www.thestar.com/business/2016/01/29/stelcos-takeover-by-us-steel-no-net-benefit-for-canada.html

      • 0 avatar
        TW5

        Look up the US census data at your leisure

        • 0 avatar
          Arthur Dailey

          @TW5, what point are you trying to make?

        • 0 avatar
          nrcote

          Arthur Dailey > the USA has a trade surplus with Canada

          TW5 > Look up the US census data at your leisure

          So I did.

          Exhibit 20. U.S. Trade in Goods and Services by Selected Countries and Areas – BOP Basis

          Exports to Canada
          2015 336,072
          2016 321,255
          2017 341,691

          Imports from Canada
          2015 331,902
          2016 313,524
          2017 338,917

          Surplus
          2015 4,170
          2016 7,731
          2017 2,774

          Yep, a surplus for the US in 2015, 2016 and 2017. I couldn’t find numbers for goods *and* services in 2018, only for goods. From 2015 to 2017, the deficit for goods in smaller than the surplus for services.

          So, TW5, again, what were you trying to say?

          • 0 avatar
            ect

            nrcote – oh, please, don’t try to confuse tw5 with facts. He’s got prejudices, they’re much more important.

          • 0 avatar
            TW5

            My point is that Arthur should look up the census numbers for trade in goods, which is what Section 232 national security reviews are mainly about. However, I see that Arthur did not specify goods in his quote so the confusion was on my end.

            Regardless, trade in goods and manufacturing is the primary thrust of 232 review in this instance, particularly as it pertains to automobiles. The US runs a deficit with Canada.

    • 0 avatar
      Maxb49

      “The goal is to apply reciprocal tariffs and non-tariff barriers (if possible) until our trading partners come to the table for bilateral agreements.”

      That’s not how it works in the real world.

  • avatar
    Manic

    Here we go, now then big3 plants in Canada, if they’d want to use US steel, will have to pay +25% for that. They wouldn’t. Mexico will probably do the same.
    Things get even trickier with special, e.g. some mil spec grades, some of which are not even produced in the US. Costs are going up.

    “Canadian prime minister Trudeau issued today an immediate like-for-like response – announcing tariffs of up to 25% on US imports worth up to 16.6bn C$, which was the total value of Canadian steel exports to the US last year. The tariffs will cover steel and aluminium as well as orange juice, whiskey and other food products.
    With the White House having used national security legislation to introduce the tariffs, Trudeau called the measures an “affront” to Canadians who had fought alongside their American comrades in arms.
    “That Canada could be considered a national security threat to the US is inconceivable.””

  • avatar
    Arthur Dailey

    Excerpts from the Canadian Prime Minister’s response to the imposition of tariffs:
    For 150 years, Canada has been America’s most steadfast ally.
    Canadians have served alongside Americans in two world wars and in Korea.
    From the beaches of Normandy to the mountains of Afghanistan, we have fought and died together.
    Canadian personnel are serving alongside Americans at this very moment. We are partners in NORAD, NATO, and around the world.
    We came to America’s aid after 9/11 – as Americans have come to our aid in the past.
    We are fighting together against Daesh in Northern Iraq.

    The numbers are clear: The United States has a $2 billion US dollars surplus in steel trade with Canada – and Canada buys more American steel than any other country in the world, half of U.S. steel exports.

    Canada is a secure supplier of aluminum and steel to the U.S. defence industry, putting aluminum in American planes and steel in American tanks.
    That Canada could be considered a national security threat to the United States is inconceivable.
    These tariffs will harm industry and workers on both sides of the Canada-U.S. border, disrupting linked supply chains that have made North American steel and aluminum more competitive around the world.

    Beyond that, these tariffs are an affront to the long-standing security partnership between Canada and the United States, and in particular, to the thousands of Canadians who have fought and died alongside American comrades-in-arms.

    The ties of commerce, friendship and, in many cases, family between Americans and Canadians are undiminished – indeed, they have never been stronger.

    The Government of Canada is confident that shared values, geography and common interests will ultimately overcome protectionism.

    In closing, I want to be very clear about one thing: Americans remain our partners, friends, and allies. This is not about the American people. We have to believe that at some point their common sense will prevail.

    But we see no sign of that in this action today by the US administration.

    • 0 avatar
      TW5

      There was less whining from Ottawa when Obama blocked the Keystone XL to keep Canadian heavy out of US Gulf Coast refineries.

      Trudeau is not our friend, and he’s only dealing with these tariffs because he thinks its funny to work with Mexico rather than the United States regarding NAFTA revisions. The US could lavish Canada with riches, and yet that feckless little twerp works against his “friend”. Trudeau does not work for Canada, much like Obama did not work for the United States. Canadians need to send him to drama school in India so we can get something done on this continent.

      • 0 avatar
        Tele Vision

        Here in Alberta Kinder Morgan just got going again. All that ‘heavy’ is going to go to a willing and rich buyer: China. I hope you put your [email protected] behind both your’s AND your ‘President’s’ isolationism – you’ll need them there for the inevitable downturn. Trudeau is a minging trollop, yes, but he doesn’t need your help.

        • 0 avatar
          TW5

          Selling oil to China was the threat Canada made when Obama blocked the Keystone XL. However, Canada would be selling to China anyway because US production has risen sharply.

          Regardless of how you feel about Canadian politicians, you need to engender in them an understanding that the United States will prevail against China and the EU, and all of the traitorous business/banking scum in the US, and all of the poisonous politicians in DC. We will prevail because we have no choice.

          The money Canada is getting from the EU and Asia (and even American industry) to scuttle NAFTA reform is essentially wealth that is siphoned out of the US middle class. Canada could just as easily get economic deals directly from the US as part of NAFTA negotiations, but Twinkle Toes has decided the best way to get American dollars is to betray the US, while proclaiming Canada’s unwavering allegiance and friendship. Even if the average American slug falls for it, the Trump admin will not.

          When you understand the severity of the situation on our end, you realize Trump will do whatever he must. He’s not bluffing. It’s also easy to see that Trudeau doesn’t get it. He’s skating the puck through the neutral zone with his head down, and he’s about to get leveled by his own teammate for being a nonce, and it won’t much matter after-the-fact if it’s a dirty hit or a clean hit because the damage will be done.

          Trudeau is a soccer-loving soy boy who’s in way over his head. He needs all the help he can get.

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al from Oz

            Wow, I think you have some form of sickness.

            It’s called living with reality. You try to create reality with distortion of reality.

            You will now be known as “The Reality Disfunction”. (great Sci-Fi)

      • 0 avatar
        Sub-600

        Trudeau’s another rock star. Maybe he should worry about his asbestos industry and leave oil pipelines to the pros. His dad, Mick, still rocks though.

        • 0 avatar
          ra_pro

          And your mother is the Holstein cow in your fathers barn, that’s what I would guess based on your smarts so fully displayed in this forum? Mind Holstein cows are among the best so you do have a decent pedigree.

  • avatar
    Tstag

    Trump is an idiot, he’s putting tarrifs on steel and aluminium from the EU and Canada which is used in the US to make stuff and will therefore make that stuff more expensive. The EU meanwhile is planning a more targeted approach on Motorbikes, whisky and Jeans which is smart because they won’t affect EU productivity.

    So when the US tries to export Mustangs to the EU I guess we can expect the price to go up because steel will cost Ford more money!

    • 0 avatar
      ra_pro

      The best solution to Drumpf is what China already figured out. Hit the American farmer the primary sponsor of the republican party and the orange Drumpf man. Steep tariffs on American farming commodities and source them from other countries. Drumpf will fold within a day.

  • avatar
    jimmyy

    America is fortunate to have elected Trump. He is going to stop the madness of huge US trade deficits. Some of our allies have big fat mouths. Fact is the US has everything to gain and nothing to lose in a trade war. This is going to be fun to watch. Trump hating liberal aholes leaders from around the world will lose everything when Trump cuts off their unfair trade.

    • 0 avatar
      ra_pro

      America has nothing to lose. If you are money launder for Russian mafia like the orange Drumpf then I would agree, however economics 101 tells us that everybody else will lose. SO jimmy are you Drumpf’s cousin when you are so confident about this?

      • 0 avatar
        jimmyy

        Sorry, you are wrong. The country running the huge trade deficit wins after a little shaking. And, the country running the huge surplus loses. That is economics 101.

        Did you see today’s job report? Very strong. Looks like Trump’s trade war is already yielding good results for America.

        • 0 avatar
          Ce he sin

          And here’s Economics 1.02 It’s a little harder but it goes like this:

          The US has a large trade deficit, especially with China and in the context of manufactured goods. Now let’s do a little thought experiment. Suppose the US imposes a complete ban on Chinese imports. So where are these goods to be made instead? The US? We’re talking about I would guess tens of millions of generally low paid, boring, repetitive jobs. America has however nearly full employment, a fact that some attribute, although without evidence of cause and effect because unemployment has been falling for several years, to the current president. So where are all these tens of millions of people willing to do low paid, boring jobs going to come from? The only possible way is to encourage immigration on an unprecedented level. The economics bit? Given a limited and fully occupied workforce, the economy grows by outsourcing the low paid jobs and doing the better paid ones at home.
          Like I said, Economics 1.02.

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    And here’s another question: if we’re talking about tariffs on German cars, OK, but how many are actually made in Germany? Most of the higher-volume German models are actually made all over Europe. The BMW 3-series hails mainly from South Africa.

    As far as Trump’s silly line about how Germans were “unfair” to America because every car on Park Avenue is a Benz…I’ll just say anyone who knows anything about cars knows why folks with money stopped buying Caddies and Lincolns a good 30 years ago. In fairness to Trump, though, this was right around the time he was going broke and getting divorced repeatedly, so maybe he wasn’t paying attention. The poor guy had a lot on his plate.

    • 0 avatar
      Manic

      12 factories for 3, not sure if SA cars are sent to US, MEX is much nearer
      But Euro-market cars are made in Germany.
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BMW_3_Series_(F30)

  • avatar
    tedward

    Wow guys.
    The us, driven gleefully by both parties, has been selling our manufacturing capacity out at the behest of our own domestic financial industry. We’ve used access to our consumer market as the carrot to our poorer foreign partners as well as the income generator for our outsourced manufacturing investments. Blaming this on one politician or party is fantasy land wishful thinking and leads me to believe anyone doing so is shamefully open to political propaganda. Also, the Obama contempt is bizarre, you don’t have to agree with his policies to respect their man, his accomplishments are truly staggering and his personal life seems to be conducted with dignity.

    One needs to show that the manufacturing shift is a) Not in our interests and b) realistically reversible before launching into some hot winded diatribe about reversing the “vichy liberal” policies, which are anything but. Also, DJT supporters should really think about whether all of this is really about the countries long term interests or just another short term political move designed to personally benefit him (not the Republican party even). His track record so far is pretty biased towards the self dealing side of things.

  • avatar

    You guys missing the big picture. It is not about Community Organizer or Reality TV Star being elected president. The issue is that any system evolves nothing stays static. The thinking that world order established after WWII by US, NATO or Warsaw Pact will persist forever in the same shape and form is deeply mistaken.

    NATO served its purpose well and is not needed anymore – SU is gone long time ago and attempt to turn Russia into enemy of Mankind does not work. EU is in deep crisis and it is a matter of time when both NATO and EU unravel. It is already happening. EU had a chance to establish single European Army, common European identity and culture, overcome nationalism and etc to become more like United States of Europe than collection of independent states.

    We in US also tired of spending huge amount of our hard earned money trying to protect and placate unruly children which world’s former superpowers had become. It could not last forever and it did not. We want our money back, our infrastructure is crumbling, social security and national healthcare is a sad joke compared with developed European countries. It is time to invest into our own country and our own people. Thats why we elected Trump. Other candidates would be afraid to say “NO” to Europe and other so called “allies” and disband outdated structures. It is not the first time attempt of globalization fails. First it were Romans, then Europeans, Germans even came up with their own version of globalisation based on master race. PAX Americana came to the end too. Some progress was made but not enough. Now evolution turns in the new direction, rise of new found nationalism is evident and will wipe out outdated structures. New fresh beginning is due. Interesting times are ahead of us. Who will lead the new attempt of globalization and when this will happen – nobody can say. US is broke – it will be not us. China?


Back to TopLeave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Recent Comments

  • Inside Looking Out: Congratulations with your new car Corey. Did you have a plan B when planning the trip? It is a...
  • Dodge440391SG: My Dad bught a new 1950 Studebaker without a heater. It has been reported that my Mother was not...
  • ptschett: ‘Minnesota’ might be the problem there. When I was growing up in South Dakota the conventional...
  • NormSV650: Acura delays the Honda turbocharged announcment until another auto show.
  • forward_look: Power supplied by the highway?? We can’t even have long-range electric trains in ‘Murica.

New Car Research

Get a Free Dealer Quote

Staff

  • Contributors

  • Timothy Cain, Canada
  • Matthew Guy, Canada
  • Ronnie Schreiber, United States
  • Bozi Tatarevic, United States
  • Chris Tonn, United States
  • Corey Lewis, United States
  • Mark Baruth, United States
  • Moderators

  • Adam Tonge, United States
  • Corey Lewis, United States