BMW and Volkswagen are considering plans to expand U.S. production following a Dec. 4 meeting with President Trump at the White House.
Volkswagen Group's CEO Herbert Diess told reporters the company is now in talks with Ford Motor Co. to build its cars at Ford's U.S. assembly plants. VW and Ford have been in discussions since signing a memorandum of understanding on June 19 about how they could collaborate. They have suggested they could jointly develop a line of commercial vehicles, possibly a cargo van.
"The president has a point in trying to convince us to invest more into America, and we are prepared to invest more," Diess told USA Today following the meeting with Trump.
Volkswagen is also considering building a second U.S. assembly plant in addition to its existing plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
BMW also announced it will expand its manufacturing footprint at its assembly plant in Spartanburg, S.C., where it builds its X-line of utility vehicles. From 2018 to 2021, BMW will invest $600 million in plant infrastructure for future generations of its expanding line of SUVs. BMW will offer the 2019 X7 as its first three-row SUV.
The plant improvements will include 1,000 additional jobs, which will bring the total at the plant to 11,000.
BMW hasn't committed to building a second U.S. plant to build its engines, despite Trump's Nov. 29 tweet announcing "a major new plant" from the automaker. A new plant will open in Mexico during the summer of 2019.
"With our plant in Spartanburg and the new plant in Mexico coming on stream in summer 2019, we will increase our production in North America," according to a company statement. "We will therefore in future have the scale where a step like this may make business sense. As of today, no decision has been taken on this topic."