Adios, Amigo? Honda Considering Moving Fit Production Out of Mexico, Report Says

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky

It’s rumored that Honda is considering reallocating production of its U.S.-market Fit subcompact to Japan from Mexico in a few years. According to reports, this is partly due to everything that’s going on with the North American Free Trade Agreement, or whatever they’re calling it now.

The new arrangement, which replaces NAFTA, is set to raise the minimum North American content for cars to qualify for duty-free market access to 75 percent from 62.5 percent, while simultaneously raising Mexico’s auto workers’ minimum wage and giving them the right to union representation.

That might make things tricky for a budget model with relatively slim profit margins. According to Reuters, sources at the company say Honda is trying to decide whether or not it’s worth it in the long run. The discussion is said to be highly confidential, necessitating the sources’ need for anonymity.

A Fit assembly swap could be a predictor for how other automakers might react under the new trade deal. One of the employee said if Honda decides to shift production out of Mexico, it would wait until the company launches its fourth-generation model. The next-gen Fit is rumored to arrive sometime in 2021.

U.S.-bound Fits are presently assembled at Honda’s plant in Celaya, Mexico, alongside the HR-V crossover. A Honda spokesman informed Reuters that the company had not made any final decisions on vehicle production.

[Image: Honda]

Matt Posky
Matt Posky

A staunch consumer advocate tracking industry trends and regulation. Before joining TTAC, Matt spent a decade working for marketing and research firms based in NYC. Clients included several of the world’s largest automakers, global tire brands, and aftermarket part suppliers. Dissatisfied with the corporate world and resentful of having to wear suits everyday, he pivoted to writing about cars. Since then, that man has become an ardent supporter of the right-to-repair movement, been interviewed on the auto industry by national radio broadcasts, driven more rental cars than anyone ever should, participated in amateur rallying events, and received the requisite minimum training as sanctioned by the SCCA. Handy with a wrench, Matt grew up surrounded by Detroit auto workers and managed to get a pizza delivery job before he was legally eligible. He later found himself driving box trucks through Manhattan, guaranteeing future sympathy for actual truckers. He continues to conduct research pertaining to the automotive sector as an independent contractor and has since moved back to his native Michigan, closer to where the cars are born. A contrarian, Matt claims to prefer understeer — stating that front and all-wheel drive vehicles cater best to his driving style.

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  • Tmport Tmport on Oct 26, 2018

    Mexican-made Fits have had pretty poor quality control, so it's probably for the best.

    • See 2 previous
    • Tmport Tmport on Oct 27, 2018

      @cargogh I'm basing that comment on what I've read in the forums, which (as always) could be distorted. Good to hear that you've had positive experiences. It seems like the 2015s were especially problematic.

  • Arthur Dailey Arthur Dailey on Oct 26, 2018

    Weren't Fits for the Canadian market assembled/manufactured in China for a while?

    • Sjd Sjd on Oct 26, 2018

      Yes, some of the previous generation model were.

  • ToddAtlasF1 ToddAtlasF1 on Oct 27, 2018

    This is exciting news, but I thought most Fits have been coming from Japan ever since demand for HR-Vs pushed most of their production out of Mexico a year or two ago.

  • King of Eldorado King of Eldorado on Oct 28, 2018

    I'm considering a new Fit EX to replace my 2011 second generation one. For some reason there are only 5 Fits in inventory among the 3 dealers within 75 miles of my home: 4 LX and one Sport. Anyone know why this might be?