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Auto Trade Groups Unite Against Trump Tariffs

Source: Tire Business

WASHINGTON — The Driving American Jobs Coalition, a group representing many facets of the U.S. auto industry, has formed a new coalition to oppose potential new tariffs on imported automobiles and motor vehicle parts.

The coalition — involving eight major auto industry trade groups — plans to inform policymakers and stakeholders about the negative effects of imposing new auto tariffs, including massive job losses and significant consumer price increases for virtually all motor vehicles and parts regardless of their national origin.

Higher auto tariffs also will result in reduced capital for investments in innovation and less competition in promoting cutting-edge automotive technologies developed here at home, according to the Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association, one of the coalition members.

At a time of unprecedented growth, new tariffs on imported vehicles and parts represent a significant threat to our economy and the job growth that has occurred since President Trump took office, the coalition said.

The coalition is comprised of the American Automotive Policy Council, Auto Care Association (ACA), American International Automobile Dealers Association (AIADA), Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers (AAM), Association of Global Automakers (AGA), Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association (MEMA), National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) and Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA).

“Tariffs are particularly harmful to the auto industry because they will result in job losses that will be felt across the entire supply chain,” ACA President and CEO Bill Hanvey said.

“From the manufacturing facility in South Carolina to the dealership in Michigan to the independent repair shop in Pennsylvania, prices for vehicles, parts and repairs would go up, hurting consumers, and American jobs would disappear. We are glad to be lending our voice to this coalition and calling for the administration to protect American workers and the American auto industry.”

Ann Wilson, MEMA’s senior vice president of government affairs, noted that the “importation of motor vehicle parts is not a risk to our national security, but that the “imposition of tariffs is a risk to our economic security, jeopardizing supplier jobs and investments in the United States. To put it simply, if we lose the opportunity to develop and manufacture new technologies in the U.S., we will have little opportunity to recoup these losses for a decade.”

SEMA President and CEO Christopher Kersting said: “The proposed tariffs are an unwelcome tax on every sector of the auto industry. From the auto makers to the many small businesses that comprise the specialty auto parts industry, tariffs on imported vehicles and auto parts pose an unexpected threat to a healthy American economy.”

AIADA President and CEO Cody Lusk added: “Under these proposed tariffs, autos of all brands would go up in price by as much as $6,900 — a cost that would hit not only consumers but also the auto dealers and dealership employees who sell and service the vehicles.

“The resulting loss in auto and auto parts sales, dealership employment, and facility investment would be devastating for the communities that rely on these small businesses to drive their economies.”

Mitch Bainwol, AAM President and CEO Mitch Bainwol added: “All of the groups participating in this coalition understand the administration’s desire to level the playing field and make better trade deals for American workers and families.

“But, we also agree that raising auto tariffs is the wrong approach to achieving these goals. Higher tariffs will significantly raise the price of all new cars and trigger a drop in sales and production — ultimately, resulting in job losses. There is a much better way to accomplish our shared objectives. We look forward to working with the president and other policymakers.”

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