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Ford to invest up to £230m at Halewood plant
Ford is to invest up to £230m at its vehicle transmission facility in Halewood. The plant will be transformed to build electric power units for future Ford all-electric passenger and commercial vehicles sold in Europe.
Power unit production in Halewood is expected to begin in mid-2024, with production capacity 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 500 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% 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 UK government for its support for this important investment at Halewood which reconfirms Ford’s continuing commitment to the UK and our position as a leading investor in this country’s auto industry and technological base.”
Business secretary, Kwasi Kwarteng MP, added: “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.”
The power unit is the complete all-electric assembly that replaces the engine and transmission in a conventional petrol or diesel engine vehicle. The Ford Halewood transmission facility was chosen to supply the power units given its excellent record on quality, competitiveness and strong skills base.
Halewood currently builds transmissions for a number of Ford passenger and commercial vehicles and exports 100% of its production. Before being taken back completely into Ford ownership earlier this year, Halewood had been part of Getrag Ford Transmissions, the transmission manufacturing joint venture co-owned by Ford and Magna, for more than 20 years.
Ford 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 annually.