Vehicle production last week in the US, Canada and Mexico was expected to hit an estimated 322,974 units, up 15.6% from the 279,398 cars and trucks built last week, according to Ward's Automotive Reports.

Including last week's estimates, calendar year North American output now totals 11,621,699 vehicles, down 1.5% from like-2003's pace.

In the US, automakers were expected to produce 234,205 vehicles last week, up 19.5% from the 196,017 cars and trucks built the previous week. To date, calendar 2004 US vehicle output totals an estimated 8,577,931 units, down 1.4% compared to the 8,701,361 vehicles built in like-2003.

Last week's Canadian vehicle production was estimated at 67,150, an increase of 38.3% from the 48,554 units assembled the previous week. Estimated calendar-2004 Canadian vehicle production now stands at 1,943,935 units, up 4.5% compared to the 1,860,689 vehicles produced in like-2003.

Of the cars and trucks slated for production last week in the US, General Motors Corp. accounted for 32.6%; Ford Motor Co., 23.0%; Chrysler of DaimlerChrysler, 12.4%; Honda of America Mfg. Inc., 6.8%; Toyota Motor Mfg. Inc., 7.5%; Nissan Motor Mfg. Corp., 6.9%; New United Motor Mfg. Inc., 2.5%; BMW of North America Inc., 1.3%; Mitsubishi Motor Mfg. of America Inc., 1.5%; AutoAlliance International Inc., 1.0%; Subaru of Indiana Automotive Inc., 1.2%; Mercedes-Benz U.S. of DaimlerChrysler, 0.8%; and other manufacturers, 2.5%.