Ford del Sur: New Factories South of the Border

Ford recently announced a $2.5 billion – yes, with a B – investment in two new factories to be built in Mexico, specifically the states of Chihuahua and Guanjuato. These facilities will be purposed with building new generations of engines and transmissions, respectively. The announcement comes made right around when Ford Motor Company is celebrating its 90th year operating in Mexico.

The Chihuahua engine facility is actually an expansion of Ford’s existing Chihuahua Engine Plant; the $1.1 billion dollar investment will accompany 1,300 new jobs and is focused on the production of newer and more fuel-efficient engines. An additional $200 million dollars and 500 new jobs comprise an expansion of the existing I-4 and Diesel production facility. These developments, once completed, will make the Ford Chihuahua factory into the largest of its kind in Mexico.

The new transmission plant in Guanajuato will be built within the existing facility of Ford’s longtime partner Getrag. $1.2 billion will be invested in the construction of this factory and estimates place the number of jobs that will be created at approximately 2,000. This will be Ford’s first transmission plant in Mexico and will be tasked with producing a new generation of automatic transmissions for “key products” in foreign markets.

Mexico is currently the fourth largest producer of Ford vehicles and engines, as well as the second largest supplier of Ford’s global manufacturing network. 11,300 Ford employees are located in Mexico, and Ford models produced there include the Fiesta and Fusion – both gasoline and hybrid variants. Within the next few years, many of the Fords driving around Dallas and the surrounding areas will likely have engines produced in the Chihuahua facility. While the transmission plant will primarily produce parts for markets in South America, Europe, and the Asia-Pacific region, some North American Ford vehicles will benefit from the new generation of transmissions built there as well.

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