The photo above was taken July 23, 2008 at the production kickoff for the Mazda6 at the AutoAlliance International plant, jointly owned by Mazda and Ford, in Flat Rock, Michigan. And as of this week, though neither company made a big deal about it, the AutoAlliance facility stopped building the Mazda6, ending Mazda production in the United States.

Although Ford takes total practical control of AutoAlliance International, the two companies will maintain their 50-50 stake in the plant for now while Ford invests $550 million in the facility to gear up for 2013 Fusion production.

The plant has built some well-known nameplates, including the Probe, Cougar and Mustang. The success of the joint venture led to the opening of an AutoAlliance Thailand plant in Rayong, modeled on its Flat Rock forebear. Mazda's manufacturing departure from the U.S. will see 2014 Mazda6 production return to Japan; the automaker's North American production relocates to Salamanca, Mexico in early 2013.


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  • 140 Comments
      dssmalik
      • 2 Years Ago
      Wouldn't it be nice if American companies felt the same loyalty to American workers as Mazda does to Japanese workers. American companies have their products manufactured overseas but they sell it to us at the same price as if an American worker made it.
      Temple
      • 2 Years Ago
      Crazy to think that the Ford Fusion is exclusively Mexican-made until they move to Flat Rock, and that North American sold Mazda 6 were US-made (in Flat Rock) until just now.
        Lone88
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Temple
        I have a Mazda6 and twice I have put a "Buy American" fan who tried to scold me because I bought a "Foren" car in their places. It just so happens one of them drove a Fusion...lets just say felt really good knocking them off their high horse.
          jbm0866
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Lone88
          Having production in America might be good for a few hundred factory workers and some parts suppliers...but the bulk of the profits still go back to the parent company and whichever country they are based in.
        Polak_RX8
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Temple
        never mexican made,
          michigan
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Polak_RX8
          @jbm0866 So what? If that's such an objectionable practice I sure hope American car manufacturers don't try selling their products in other countries
      M
      • 2 Years Ago
      And we wonder why TOYOTA is named the most American made car in the USA? That article has been in AOL Autos several times that I have seen, and that conclusion is based on where most of the component parts are made and assembled.
      ZB2585
      • 2 Years Ago
      A lot of you should realize that companies like Honda and Toyota are what have helped keep many U.S. cities afloat during the recession. While they may be based in Japan, over 90% of the parts that go into the vehicles sold in the U.S. are produced in the U.S.! These companies didn't bail out during the recession, ad Honda also didn't lay off any workers, unlike the big 3. So I would educate yourselves a little more before coming on here and sounding ignorant. You need to understand how to global economy works and just how much these "foreign" companies have helped U.S. industry.
        Dlwww
        • 2 Years Ago
        @ZB2585
        if you think 90% of the parts are from USA think again there isn't even close to that in the big three
      Stryyder56
      • 2 Years Ago
      Scary when the Japanese manufacturers start moving production to Mexico and back home. What do they know that we do not????
      Mr. Golf
      • 2 Years Ago
      Just what the state of Michigan needs, more unemployed people.
        MAX
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Mr. Golf
        Ford's cranking up the factory to build Fusions, so probably there will be more jobs. BTW, Ford got 15.9 billion TARP money and an additional 4 billion from the US energy department. Foreign companies are subsidized to the hilt by their governments and also by the US government and state governments. Japan recently announced they would help pay for Toyota moving Lexus production out of Japan. Wonder if they will help Mazda? MITI is notorious for picking winners and losers.
          paulpaxteny
          • 2 Years Ago
          @MAX
          Ford took NO GOVT BAILOUT -- in fact FORD SAID NO THANK YOU which is why americans are buying FORD vehicles to say THANK YOU. FORD did what any company should do which was sell off assets, restructure, pay down debt and now they are doing great.
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        animat0r
        • 2 Years Ago
        cool story bro, tell me again how awesome america was at the end of 8 years of the Bush Administration.
        untitledfolder
        • 2 Years Ago
        You're an idiot. Taxes are as low as they've ever been, lower than historic GOP administrations.
          axiomatik
          • 2 Years Ago
          @untitledfolder
          The President has zero influence on how much you pay in local and state taxes. Obama has only lowered Federal Income Taxes.
          luigi.tony
          • 2 Years Ago
          @untitledfolder
          Yeah, Obama passed the LARGEST Tax increase in History. You koolaid drinkers need to wake up. Obama is adding taxes on items never taxed before. Obama is all about tax tax tax, spend spend spend. To think otherwise is just ignorance.
        mmmfloorpie
        • 2 Years Ago
        What do taxes have to do with Mexican workers being paid dirt and not getting any benefits or healthcare? If that's the America you wanna live in, look no further than Mitt Romney.
        ngiotta
        • 2 Years Ago
        Actually, this has nothing to do with politics. If you want an answer to the auto industry's woes, look no further than unions.
        peakarach1
        • 2 Years Ago
        What taxes?
      MAX
      • 2 Years Ago
      This is the company that should go out of business rather than GM. Without the Japanese government buying down the yen, they're a goner. Maybe Team Sergio can use them to help the return of Alfa to North America or even into Japan. Not holding my breath. I think Ford got pissed off that they couldn't use Mazda as a springboard into Japan's highly protectionist market. (Hey Hyundai had to withdraw from Japan. What does that tell you?)
        Rob
        • 2 Years Ago
        @MAX
        I have a Mazda 5 that has provided 40k miles with no issues and we love it. Out of 29 new cars that I've bought this is definitely one of the top few that I've really warmed up to. It is far more reliable and defect-free than the '08 and '11 civic Sis that I've owned and makes the '09 Accord coupe V6 I had look like a '90s Hyundai(POS). Now Mazdas are getting very fuel efficient, too, which was the ONLY complaint I ever had with our 5.
          michigan
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Rob
          Glad you had a good experience with your Mazda 5. It's a nice vehicle, unfortunately the vibration and noise in the 2nd row seats when no one is sitting in them is completely inexcuseable
          MAX
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Rob
          We had a Mazda 6 on our car lot with 70k miles and spent over $3000 to turn the check engine light off and Jim Ellis Mazda or no independent mechanic could not fix this POS. We had to take a huge hit and take it back to the auction. Mazda has worse automatic transmissions and electronics than any American car.
      Mark
      • 2 Years Ago
      No real loss if they just closed all the doors for good on this brand.
      MAX
      • 2 Years Ago
      Japan's per capita debt is twice America's and far higher than Greece's. Meanwhile American taxpayers and soldiers protect Japan from being exterminated by the Chinese, Koreans, Russians and the rest of Asia that hates them for their extraordinary atrocities in WW2. If you love Japan so much, move there, I'm sure they'd love to have you gaijin. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_public_debt
      luigi.tony
      • 2 Years Ago
      Thank GOD Mazda is dropping that UAW polluted factory.
        CrunchyCookie98
        • 2 Years Ago
        @luigi.tony
        Having owned both an MX-6 and a Probe, I can't agree more. Between the spotty dying paintjob, loose window seals, to the blown out bulbs, saggy seatbelts, blown hatch struts, and random pieces that fall off the car (I also remember reading a 97 Edmunds road test where A/C fluid leaked into the cabin), it was clearly a car not assembled with made with care. This, plus the self-destructing automatic transmission Ford force-fed into all 1994+ 4-cylinder 626/MX-6s, pretty much torpedoed Mazda's formerly stellar reputation for quality. Let the recovery begin.
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