Just two days after President Donald Trump told a trio of auto CEOs that he wants new plants to be built in the U.S., Ford's chief downplayed the idea that his firm would build another final assembly plant here.
Instead, as concerns swirl that demand for new cars and trucks will soon cool off, Ford CEO Mark Fields said told CNBC that his company is "always looking to grow our business, and use the assets we have even more."
Translation: Ford will focus on boosting production at its seven U.S. final assembly plants before it spends well over a billion dollars to add an eighth in America.
"I think we have the appropriate amount of assembly plants here in the U.S.," Fields said.
As much as President Trump would like to see all cars sold in the U.S. actually being built here, the odds of that happening soon are very low. Consider where the auto cycle is right now. After sales climbed to a record 17.55 million vehicles last year, there are many in the industry who think they've hit a peak.
In fact, Goldman Sachs projects U.S. auto sales will drop to 15 million vehicles by 2020. That would be a drop of 15 percent from 2016's levels.