Mexico manufactured 104,214 buses, heavy-duty and tractor-trailer trucks in the first half of 2019 (January-June), up 36.50 percent compared to the same period last year.
The data was released August 21 by Mexico’s National Association of Bus, Truck and Tractor Truck Producers (ANPACT).
Miguel Elizalde, the president of ANPACT, said the increased demand for heavy-duty trucks came mainly from the United States, but also by an increase in demand from domestic Mexican markets because of regulatory changes.
Mexico exported 84,416 commercial trucks and vehicles from January to June 2019, mainly to the United States, according to ANPACT. That represents a 30 percent increase in exports compared to the first half of 2018.
“The cumulative figures continue to indicate significant growth during the first half of the year, both in production and exports,” Elizalde said. “However, both items may be subject to an eventual slowdown of the economy, so it is necessary to have the structural conditions for the domestic market to begin to be an engine that boosts production.”
The Mexican economy is inching closer to entering a recession. Mexico’s economy registered zero growth in the second quarter, weaker than earlier estimated, according to recent data from Mexico’s National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI).
“Gross domestic product (GDP) registered no change in real terms in the second quarter of 2019,” INEGI released in a statement.
“We’re concerned about growth, but we’re more concerned about development. Growth is creating wealth and development is creating wealth and distributing that wealth,” Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said at an August 23 news briefing when asked about the data, according to Reuters.
While truck production increased the first half of the year, domestic sales of new heavy-duty trucks in Mexico plummeted 50 percent in July, compared to the same month in 2018.
Elizalde blamed the fall on NOM-044, a new requirement in Mexico that limits the amount of carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, hydrocarbons, non-methane and other gases that diesel engines are allowed to emit.
Mexico City-based ANPACT represents producers of commercial vehicles and diesel engines, including Dina, Freightliner, Hino, International, Isuzu, Kenworth, Mack, MAN, Mercedes-Benz, Scania, Volkswagen, Volvo, Cummins and Detroit Diesel.