Nissan evacuates Mexico City HQ, Cuernavaca plant after earthquake; VW resumes production


The auto industry today was awaiting word on damage caused by the magnitude 7.1 quake that ravaged central Mexico on Tuesday, killing at least 225 people.
Reuters reported that as many as 4.6 million homes, businesses and other facilities had lost electricity, according to national power company Comisión Federal de Electricidad. Most of them were in the greater Mexico City area and in the states of Guerrero, Morelos, Puebla, Oaxaca, and Tlaxcala.
Check in with Automotive News throughout the day for updates concerning automotive operations throughout the earthquake-affected region. For general coverage of the disaster from Reuters, click here.
Update: 11:17 a.m. ET
A spokeswoman for Volkswagen Group of America said this morning that production at the automaker’s massive plant in Puebla, Mexico, was halted Tuesday after the earthquake “so the plant could be thoroughly inspected.” She said that while there was some damage, it was determined to be minor, and that production for the plant’s late shift then resumed. Administrative employees at the Puebla plant returned to work today.
The plant makes the VW Beetle, Golf, Golf wagon, and Jetta cars along with the Tiguan compact crossover. VW invested $1 billion into the operations to build the redesigned Tiguan.
Update: 10:48 a.m. ET
Nissan Motor Co. evacuated its plant in Cuernavaca and its local headquarters in Mexico City. The plant is 53 miles south of Mexico City and produces the Tsuru and Tiida cars, the Frontier pickup and the NV200 small van (along with the rebadged Chevy City Express). Nissan released this statement:
“Our thoughts are with the people of Mexico who have been affected by the earthquake. Our priority is to ensure the well-being of our employees and their families and supporting their communities. Fortunately, we had no deaths or injuries at any of our facilities. Our manufacturing plant in Cuernavaca and headquarters in Mexico City were evacuated and employees were encouraged to return home. We will assess those facilities for damage before determining when they can return to safe operation. We expect to have more to share in the coming days.”
Update: 10:16 am ET 
The new Audi plant in San Jose Chiapa terminated its second shift and night shift on Wednesday, according to an account translated from German. No injuries or structural damage were reported. The $1.3 billion plant opened almost exactly one year ago and produces the Audi Q5 crossover. The plant now employs nearly 5,000 people, according to the German report.
Fuente: Automotive News