Automotive Manufacturing

In the last decade, the Kansas City region has seen significant economic investment from the automotive sector. Reinvestment in General Motors’ Fairfax, Kan. operation ($650 million in 2013 and $245 million in 2016) and Ford’s Claycomo, Mo. facility ($1.2 billion in 2011) has resulted in a surge of interest and investment from automotive suppliers looking to the KC region for new facilities.

Kansas City has been named the #2 auto industry trading hub in North America by the Brookings Institution and employs more than 15,500 individuals in the auto industry. Ford’s KC plant has been cited as its most productive worldwide, producing the new Ford Transit Van and best-selling F-150 truck.

The Basics

Employed in KC Manufacturing

JobsEQ, 4Q 2019
Note:  Data represents KCADC 18-County Region

Employed in KC Transportation Manufacturing

JobsEQ, 4Q 2019
Note:  Data represents KCADC 18-County Region

Annual Automobiles Made in KC

Center for Automotive Research, 2019

Value of KC Transportation Manufacturing
$16 billion

2012 Economic Census

Existing Presence

Kansas City is a center for automotive manufacturing and activity as a host of prominent companies operate within the region. Some of these companies include, but are not limited to: Ford Motor Company, General Motors, Garmin, Adient, Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co., LMV (Magna) Automotive Systems, Peterson Manufacturing Company, Yanfeng USA, Challenge Manufacturing Co., Janesville Acoustics, Grupo Antolin, Lear Corporation, Martinrea Riverside LLC, Magna Seating of America, U.S. Farathane LLC, Legget and Platt and Faurecia.

Workforce Demographics

Manufacturing workers in Kansas City are 9% more productive than the national average, as measured by JobsEQ in Q4 2019 for output per worker. Automotive transportation production workers in Kansas City have similar age and educational attainment characteristics as the national average. However, Kansas City's automotive manufacturing workforce is three percent younger on average than the aging U.S. automotive production workers.

Auto Manufacturing by Sex

Auto Manufacturing by Age

Auto Manufacturing by Education

Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Quarterly Workforce Indicators, 2018

Kansas City is creating a 21st Century Workforce by cultivating a pipeline of preparation through education and training.

Manufacturing industry leaders, education and training providers, and the public workforce system are working together to assess critical hiring needs and the core competencies necessary to fill open positions. This is creating leading-edge education and training programs specifically designed to meet industry’s most pressing needs, like the implementation of the MT1 Certification. The Kansas City region is also the first to pilot a national careers campaign designed to help attract and train young people in advanced manufacturing.

Real Estate Opportunities

Foreign Trade Zones

Recruitment Success

Trade Corridor Network