Auto expert: Automakers 'bullied in public' by Trump

Ingrassia: Automakers being pressured heavily, in public

President Donald Trump is bullying automakers, trying to force them to build cars in the U.S. even if there isn't a business case for it, Paul Ingrassia told CNBC.

"The president comes out of commercial real estate development," Ingrassia, editor of the Revs Institute for Automotive Research, said on Power Lunch. "So, it's the equivalent of saying, 'Let's build some more skyscrapers here because it will create jobs; construction trade jobs, steel, glass jobs and all that sort of thing. Oh, by the way, there might not be occupants for these skyscrapers.'"

Jay Timmons, however, said that there will be a business case for building cars in the U.S. when President Trump creates a tax and regulatory environment that is more business-friendly.

Timmons, the president and CEO of the National Association of Manufacturers, argued that the Trump administration is stepping up to defend the "forgotten group of people" from a business environment that left them behind.

"We have oppressive regulations and we have an infrastructure system that's falling apart," Timmons told CNBC. "If we fix those three things, which the president has already started to do, then we're going to see more investment in this country. We're going to see more jobs created in this country."