Magna Steyr, the engineering unit of Canada's Magna International Inc., would like to become the first supplier in North America to land a contract building complete vehicles for the automakers. The idea of contracting out vehicle production is already in place in Europe, and ASC, a Southgate, MI-based company, makes a good living providing crucial components and some assembly to automakers, but this would mark the first time a supplier would be responsible for the entire production of a vehicle in North America. Magna Steyr is poised to take advantage of Ford's and GM's fiscal woes by positioning itself as a viable, less expensive production alternative to traditional auto plants, although industry analysts believe that capacity for these supplier-owned plants would be small, somewhere around 15,000 to 50,000 vehicles annually.

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