Mexico's auto industry set record highs for production and exports of light vehicles in 2017, sending more than 2.3 million cars and light trucks to the U.S. and about 267,000 to Canada, its principal trade partners.
Mexican auto production rose 8.9 percent last year to nearly 3.8 million vehicles for eight consecutive years of gains, according to the Mexican Automotive Industry Association. Exports of cars and light trucks rose 12 percent to 3.1 million vehicles, also marking eight straight years of gains.
Exports rose for every major market, including a 9.4 percent increase to the U.S., an 8.5 percent rise to Canada, and a 19 percent increase to Latin America.
About three-quarters of Mexico's auto exports went to the U.S. and Mexican-made vehicles represented 14 percent of all cars and light trucks bought in the U.S. last year, the association said.
Mexico's record auto data come as the North American Free Trade Agreement is under attack by President Donald Trump and labor unions in the U.S. and Canada.
The 1994 accord is being renegotiated by the three sides because of U.S. demands for modifications to favor its auto production and to reduce its trade deficit with Mexico.
Trump has threatened to exit NAFTA if the talks fail. Withdrawal from the trade deal is opposed by the auto industry in all three nations, as well as U.S. farmers and other business organizations who warn of economic disruption after 24 years of North American integration.