A new four-year United Auto Workers (UAW) union agreement has Ford reshaping its future truck production, as it gears up to move the F-650 and F-750 medium-duty trucks to a new plant while getting ready to introduce a new full-size van.
The F-650 and F-750 are currently manufactured in Escobedo, Mexico by Blue Diamond Truck, but after Ford and Navistar International end their partnership with the company in three years, production will move to the Avon Lake, Ohio assembly plant. The F53 motor home and F59 commercial stripped chassis will also join the F-650 and F-750 at the Ohio plant that also builds the E-Series van, which will be phased out over the next 10 years.
Eventually replacing the E-Series van will be the Ford Transit -- a new full-size van that is based on a global platform. Both vans will be sold in the U.S. market until the E-Series is completely killed off, with production scheduled to start in 2013 at the Kansas City plant in Mo., which will also produce the next-gen F-150.
In order to revamp its factories for the new production plans, Ford has invested $128 million in the Ohio plant, while spending $1.1 billion on the Kansas City facility.
"By moving our commercial vehicle production in-house, we will be able to streamline and strengthen the engineering and manufacturing of our next-generation medium-duty trucks," said Mark Fields, Ford president of the Americas.
The shuffle will also open 12,000 jobs in Ford's U.S. manufacturing facilities, including in-sourcing work from Mexico, China, and Japan.
Source: Fleet Owner