Ford, GM assess China tariff impact on prices

Ford said Thursday it has no plans to increase prices on U.S.-made vehicles sold in China, while other automakers continue to assess the impact of tariffs levied by the world’s two largest economies.

The U.S. will officially impose new tariffs on $34 billion worth of Chinese goods Friday, part of a larger threat by President Donald Trump to slap Beijing with tariffs on up to $450 billion of imports. China plans to retaliate with its own tariffs, which target $34 billion worth of cars, soybeans and other products shipped from the U.S.

Ford announced that for now, it won’t raise the manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) for its import lineup in China. Ford’s luxury unit, Lincoln, also said it has no current plans for a price increase.

As a result, Ford will assume the extra costs associated with the import duties, although most of the vehicles it sells in China are built in local factories.

Ford and Lincoln “encourage both governments to continue to work together through negotiation to resolve issues between these two important economies,” the companies said in a statement. “We remain committed to our Chinese customers and will continue to monitor the situation as it evolves.”

General Motors said it’s still assessing the potential impact of all trade actions and proposals, including U.S.-China tariffs.

China is GM’s largest market. A few hundred Camaro sports coupes are imported from the U.S., but virtually all of the vehicles sold by GM in China are built locally, according to a GM spokesperson. Nearly all parts used in Chinese production are also sourced from local suppliers.

As for the U.S. market, there will be no immediate change to pricing for GM’s Buick Envision and Cadillac CT6 plug-in hybrid, which are imported from China.

GM has sold 16,814 Buick Envision SUVs so far this year, making it the third-most popular model in Buick’s lineup. Sales of the Cadillac CT6 have hit 4,894 units. GM doesn’t break down sales of the plug-in hybrid model.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
F FORD MOTOR CO. 12.43 +0.23 +1.89%
GM GENERAL MOTORS CO. 32.58 -0.13 -0.40%
FCAU n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.
TSLA TESLA INC. 244.88 -10.82 -4.23%

The U.S. tariffs on China set to take effect Friday include auto parts and technology products. The Department of Commerce is also investigating whether car imports impair national security, a potential precursor to new levies on foreign cars.

Fiat Chrysler produces many vehicles in China, but some models—such as the Jeep Wrangler—are exported to Chinese markets. The company declined to comment on its pricing plans.

In addition to China, Trump has taken on the European Union over car shipments, threatening to impose a 20% tax unless the EU lifts trade barriers. German Chancellor Angela Merkel said she’s willing to support cutting the EU’s 10% tariff on U.S.-made cars. Automakers including BMW and Daimler have reportedly met with the U.S. ambassador to Germany in hopes of averting a trade dispute.