Ford Moving Focus Production From North America to China
Most new North American Ford Focus models will be coming from China beginning in 2019, as Ford Motor Company decided to cancel plans for an all-new manufacturing facility in San Luis Potosi, Mexico, where Focus production was to be moved to complement Ford’s Hermosillo, Mexico, plant.
The new North America Focus production plan saves $1 billion in investment costs versus the original plan – $500 million on top of the $500 million savings announced earlier this year by cancelling the new plant. Production on the Focus in China is set to begin in the second half of 2019. Additional variants of the Focus will be coming from Europe later.
Ford also announced last week that it is investing $900 million in its Kentucky Truck Plant for plant upgrades to build the Ford Expedition and Lincoln Navigator for model year 2018. Both full-size SUVs will be exported to more than 55 markets globally – including the Navigator to China.
The investment secures 1,000 jobs for hourly workers at the Louisville plant and is in addition to the $1.3 billion investment and 2,000 jobs created at that plant in late 2015 to build the Ford Super Duty. Kentucky Truck employs nearly 7,600 full-time hourly workers. Ford says it has more US hourly workers and builds more vehicles in the US than any other automaker.
Production of the current North American Focus at the Michigan Assembly Plant will continue through mid-2018. Following that, the plant will be converted to produce the Ranger midsize pickup truck in late 2018 and the Bronco midsize SUV in 2020.
No US hourly employees will be out of a job tied to the new manufacturing plan for Focus, the company said.