As part of the company’s $11.1 billion investment towards electric vehicles, Ford is planning on investing $850 million towards its Flat Rock Assembly Plant, eventually making it the company’s second electric car factory.
While Ford’s Mustang-inspired electric crossover will be built in their Cuautitlan, Mexico, plant next year, Ford will look to make investments towards its “second generation” of electric vehicles coming.
In an effort to keep up with the anticipated demand for electric cars, Ford is planning to expand on of its current factories to support electric car production.
Here is a summery of the investments announced:
- Ford is investing approximately $900 million in its southeast Michigan manufacturing footprint and targeting 900 incremental direct new jobs through 2023
- This includes the company’s plan to expand production capacity at Flat Rock (Mich.) Assembly Plant – including next-generation fully electric vehicles – targeting to invest more than $850 million through 2023 and adding a second shift
- Southeast Michigan workers also will make Ford’s first autonomous vehicles starting in 2021; Ford also is investing in an Autonomous Vehicle center where employees will install the vehicles’ unique self-driving technology and unique interiors
- Ford also is building its next-generation North American Transit Connect in North America in 2021, boosting program profits and regional content – in line with the proposed United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA)
Joe Hinrichs, Ford’s president, Global Operations, had the following statement:
“We’ve taken a fresh look at the growth rates of electrified vehicles and know we need to protect additional production capacity given our accelerated plans for fully electric vehicles. This is good news for the future of southeast Michigan, delivering more good-paying manufacturing jobs.”
With production not slated to be at full capacity until 2023, it will be a while before we see a significant number of electric vehicles coming.
Additionally if you noticed, Ford is also making headway towards producing their first autonomous vehicles in 2021. The AV manufacturing center will also be “upfitting purpose-built, commercial-grade hybrid vehicles with self-driving technology and unique interiors.”
Hinriches had the following comment:
“As we ramp up AV production, this plan allows us to adjust our investment spending to accommodate the pace of growth of this exciting new technology. This new plan combines our core strength in mass manufacturing with the agility and leanness we’ve shown with our modification centers for specialty manufacturing.”
Overall it seems like a very grounded plan from Ford. Not only are they accounting for extra production for EVs with the second electric car factory, but they also seem to be very committed towards autonomous vehicles. Autonomous vehicles do not seem to be on very many automakers’ roadmaps, so it’s interesting to see some headway in that department.