Nissan's expanding its Mississippi plant is another sign that North American auto production is more competitive.
Earlier this month, Nissan shifted production of the redesigned Murano crossover to the plant from Japan. The Canton, Miss., complex, with a new supplier park for key parts makers, will export Muranos to 118 global markets.
That export orientation is growing. North American auto manufacturing is no longer an enclave for Detroit automakers building for the home market. Nor is it just a base for European and Asian manufacturers to reach North American markets with fewer tariff, logistics and currency-exchange risks.
With experience, non-native automakers have gained confidence in North American production. Quality is not an issue. Locating suppliers is easier. Automation makes local labor rates less important.
This encourages automakers to build vehicles where they sell best and export some to fill-in markets. That's good for North American jobs.
But it's a greater challenge for local suppliers. To tap into these growing global networks, they must keep boosting their flexibility, technological prowess and worldwide reach.