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Ford investing £230m in UK Halewood plant to make electric vehicle parts

Mon 18 October 2021 10:50 | A A A

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(Sharecast News) - Ford said it was investing £230m in its UK Halewood plant to make electric vehicle parts as Britain gears up to meet a ban on petrol and diesel vehicles by 2030.

The company said the factory near Liverpool would be converted to build electric power units for future Ford all-electric passenger and commercial vehicles in Europe, safeguarding jobs at the plant.

Production is expected to start in 2024 at what will be Ford's first electric vehicle component in-house assembly site in Europe, turning out 250,000 units a year.

The power unit is the complete all-electric assembly that replaces the engine and transmission in a conventional petrol or diesel engine vehicle.

Ford has committed to having all its passenger vehicles as all-electric and two-thirds of its commercial vehicle sales all-electric or plug-in hybrid by 2030.

"This investment is excellent news for the highly skilled workforce at Halewood as it secures the future of the plant," said Unite union general secretary Sharon Graham.

"It is absolutely imperative that the government does not see this investment as a one-off but supports similar schemes to ensure the entire UK automotive industry experiences a smooth transition in the move to build electric vehicles."

Halewood currently builds transmissions for a number of Ford passenger and commercial vehicles and exports all of its production.

The car manufacturing giant is one of the UK's largest exporters, exporting engines and transmissions from its facilities to more than 15 countries on six continents - with overseas sales generating around £2.5bn a year.

Ford's latest announcement follows a number of major electrification announcements from the company in Europe this year.

It is investing $1bn to modernise its vehicle assembly facility in Cologne, Germany. Ford's first European-built, volume all-electric passenger vehicle will roll off Cologne's production line in 2023.

Ford also announced earlier this year that in addition to building the all-electric E-Transit from 2022, Ford Otosan - Ford's joint venture in Turkey - will produce an all-electric version of the next-generation Transit Custom from 2023 at its manufacturing facility in Kocaeli, Turkey.

A new light commercial vehicle being built by Ford's vehicle assembly operations in Craiova, Romania, also will include an all-electric derivative from 2024, it added.

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