Ford brings production of electric vehicles at North American site

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Ford Motor stated on Wednesday it is bringing production of a fully electric vehicle at a second North American plant as part of its $11 billion investment plan set in 2018.

The No. 2 U.S. automaker stated it is spending about $900 million in southeast Michigan and generating 900 jobs through 2023 as part of its electric vehicle push. That consists of a plan to invest over $850 million to increase production capacity at its Flat Rock, Michigan, plant to build EVs.

“When we were taking a look at our $11 billion investment in electrification, it became obvious to us that we were going to require a second plant in the not-too-distant future to add capacity for our battery electric vehicles,” stated Joe Hinrichs, Ford’s president of global operations, in a telephone interview.

Ford is negotiating an alliance with Germany’s Volkswagen AG to collaborate together on electric and autonomous vehicles. Hinrichs stated those discussions have been positive, but that there was nothing to declare.

Ford in January 2018 stated it would boost its planned investments in electric vehicles to $11 billion by 2022 and have 40 hybrid and completely electric vehicles in its model lineup. That investment figure increased from the previous target of $4.5 billion by 2020.

Automakers have been increasing investment in the development of EVs in part due to pressure from regulators in China, Europe and California to cut carbon emissions from fossil fuels. They also are being supported by electric automakers including Tesla.

Of the 40 vehicles, Ford stated at the time that 16 would be completely electric and the rest would be plug-in hybrids.

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