Take Two

News and culture through the lens of Southern California. Hosted by A Martínez

The Ride: Automakers announce flurry of investments ahead of Trump inauguration

by Take Two

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Auto companies announce plans to increase U.S. production ahead of Trump taking office Steve Fecht/General Motors via Getty Images

Even before he steps into the Oval Office, Donald Trump has already shaken up the auto industry.

Trump's threats to go after car makers who build cars in Mexico and import them to the U.S. seems to be having some effect. And his threats to scrap or renegotiate NAFTA could be financially painful, auto execs say.

Meanwhile, over the past week, each of the Big Three automakers have made announcements of new investments in US plants. Ford, GM and Fiat-Chysler all say they will either build new plants or expand U.S. production in the coming years. And foreign makers from Hyundai to BMW also say they will ramp up production in the States.

Still, there seems to be agreement among automakers that if the Trump administration pulls out of the NAFTA trade agreement, it will hit them in their bottom line. And new research says it may hit Americans in their pocketbooks, too.  The Center for Automotive Research says car prices would spike and the loss of the trade agreement, combined with tariffs, could eliminate more than 30,000 manufacturing jobs.

Motor critic Sue Carpenter tackles these topics, and looks at how changes at the EPA may also affect the auto industry. Click the blue bar above to listen to our conversation with her.

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