Originally published on Gas2.
Carlos Slim is one of the world’s wealthiest industrialists. Part of his Inbursa financial empire is Giant Motors, a Mexican manufacturing company. Giant is partnering with Moldex, a subsidiary of Bimbo — the world’s largest bakery — and the Monterrey Institute of Technology, to develop a new electric car to serve as a taxi to help combat Mexico City’s chronic smog problem. The first prototypes could be on the road by 2018.
Moldex has been building light duty electric trucks for its parent company for more than two years at its factory in the state of México. As of last summer, Bimbo had 320 units in service as delivery vehicles. Each is able to carry 1,350 lbs of cargo and has a range of 45 miles — not enough to go cross country but more than enough for daily delivery needs.
Operating costs for the electric vans are said to average between 40 and 50 centavos per kilometer. By comparison, operating costs for a similar gasoline powered truck are more than 2 pesos — four times as much. Moldex is capable of producing 20 such trucks a week. Moldex announced last summer it would begin selling the trucks for 390,000 pesos — equivalent to US $19,000.
Giant Motors also announced recently a tie-in with Chinese auto maker JAC Motors (Jianghai Automobile Company), to build the JAC S2 and S3 SUVs. Production is scheduled to begin in the second half of 2017. The S2 and S3 will be built at Giant’s factory in Ciudad Sahagún which will be expanded to add enough capacity to build 40,000 vehicles a year. The expansion will add 1,000 factory jobs and spur growth of another 4,500 jobs for suppliers and ancillary businesses.
Why is any of this important? Isn’t Mexico overrun with murderers and rapists? Apparently the answer is no. There are actually people there who buy cars and trucks and companies who manufacture them. The Chinese are consummate businessmen. They are happy to enter into profitable business ventures wherever they may be found around the world.
The vehicles made in Mexico are sold in markets around the world from Central and South America to Africa, Europe, the Middle East and Asia. Here’s a thought for Trumpies. By excluding Mexicans and Mexican goods from the US, America may be empowering other nations to surpass it in manufacturing muscle. By refusing to do business with others and declaring America First! as our economic modus operandi, we may be cutting off our nose to spite our face, as my old Irish grandmother would say.
70 years ago, Robert Frost wrote a poem entitled simply Mending Wall. In it he says,
Before I built a wall I’d ask to know
What I was walling in or walling out,
And to whom I was like to give offense.
Wise words. American Exceptionalism cuts two ways. We would be smart to bear that in mind before we cut ourselves off from the rest of the world and allow Carlos Slim, JAC Motors, and a hundred other companies that are willing to work together rather than cocooning themselves in a xenophobic cloak lead the way into the future of commerce, leaving America behind in splendid isolation.
Source and photo credit: Mexico News Daily
Reprinted with permission.