Ford Motors is to invest £230 million to transform Halewood Operations in the UK in order to build its first electric vehicle components.
Building on its commitment to electrification in Europe, Ford has announced it intends to invest up to £230 million at its Halewood vehicle transmission facility to convert it to build electric power units for future Ford all-electric passenger and commercial vehicles sold in Europe.
The power unit is the complete all-electric assembly that replaces the engine and transmission in a conventional petrol or diesel engine vehicle.
Power unit production in Halewood is expected to begin in mid-2024. Production capacity is planned to be around 250,000 units a year. The investment, which is subject to and includes UK government support through its Automotive Transformation Fund, will help safeguard the Ford jobs at Halewood.
Stuart Rowley, president, Ford of Europe, said: “This is an important step, marking Ford’s first in-house investment in all-electric vehicle component manufacturing in Europe. It strengthens further our ability to deliver 100 percent of Ford passenger vehicles in Europe being all-electric and two-thirds of our commercial vehicle sales being all-electric or plug-in hybrid by 2030.
“We also want to thank the U.K. Government for its support for this important investment at Halewood which reconfirms Ford’s continuing commitment to the U.K. and our position as a leading investor in this country’s auto industry and technological base.”
Kwasi Kwarteng MP, said: “Ford’s decision to build its first electric vehicle components in Europe at its Halewood site is further proof that the UK remains one of the best locations in the world for high-quality automotive manufacturing. In this highly competitive, global race to secure electric vehicle manufacturing, our priority is to ensure the UK reaps the benefits.
“Today’s announcement, backed by government funding, is a huge vote of confidence in Britain’s economic future and our plans to ramp up electric vehicle production. It will future-proof Halewood’s proud industrial heritage and secure high-skilled, well-paid jobs across the North West for years to come.”
Kevin Pearson, Unite union convenor for Halewood, said: “We’re delighted the company has decided to make this important investment at Halewood, helping to safeguard Ford jobs at the site into the future. The decision recognises the experience, commitment and competitiveness of our world class workforce and is a great source of pride for all of us working at Halewood Transmission Plant and for the wider community.”
Image: courtesy Ford Europe