Ford moving electric SUV production to Mexico

Mae Love
December 7, 2017

The automaker then made plans to build autonomous and electric vehicles at Flat Rock Assembly alongside the Ford Mustang and Lincoln Continental. However, Ford has still not decided whether to operate its own on-demand transportation service.

"This allows us to bring this exciting new vehicle to global customers in a more effective way to support our overreaching business goals", Ford said in the memo.

GM unveiled plans last week to introduce its own on-demand ride-sharing service in several USA cities in 2019, using self-driving versions of the battery-powered Chevrolet Bolt. Now Ford has announced that production of the new electric SUV is shifting from its plant in Flat Rock, Michigan to Mexico so that it can produce an autonomous vehicle in Michigan.

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Ford originally earmarked US$700 million for the EV in its MI plant, which would have created about 700 new jobs, but it now plans to invest even more for its autonomous development there. It now seems as though the electric portion of that product onslaught will end up in Mexico all the same, at the automaker's existing Cuautitlan plant.

Both the 2020 electric and the 2021 self-driving vehicles will draw on the next-generation Ford Focus for some of their underbody structure and components while using different propulsion systems. The shift is meant to free up some capacity at Flat Rock to enable Ford to build its first fully-autonomous vehicle there.

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