Ford moving electric SUV production from MI to Mexico

2015 Ford Focus Electric Plugged In

Ford to move planned electric car production to Mexico from Michigan

"It's not like they're not putting money into the U.S".

Ford Motor plans to build a new electric vehicle in Mexico rather than in MI, choosing instead to build a future self-driving vehicle at the Detroit-area plant.

Mark Fields, Ford's CEO at the time, referred to the plans for the MI plant as a "vote of confidence" in the Trump administration.

The automaker then made plans to build autonomous and electric vehicles at Flat Rock Assembly alongside the Ford Mustang and Lincoln Continental.

In fact it now expects to have 850 jobs there, rather than 700. Since it's cheaper to produce cars in Mexico, it makes sense to build the electric SUV there.

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Ford's chief executive officer, Jim Hackett, has been accelerating the automaker's moves in electric and autonomous cars, while announcing $14 billion in cost cuts to improve the what he calls the company's "fitness".

Ford plans instead to convert the suburban Detroit factory into a manufacturing hub for future driverless vehicles, hiking its anticipated investment in the plant to $900M from $700M foreseen previously.

"Next year will be an important time for us as we begin to test both our self-driving technology and business model in a variety of pilot programs in the first city in which we plan to operate an autonomous vehicle business", Farley wrote.

"We have excess capacity at that plant", said Ford spokeswoman Kelli Felker. It has only one all-electric vehicle, and it is not competitive with either GM's Chevy Bolt or the Tesla Model 3, which each cost about $35,000 and can go more than 200 miles on a single charge. After replacing Mark Fields as CEO in May, one of Hackett's first moves was to shift a plan to make the Focus small vehicle in Mexico to one of the automaker's plants in China.

Ford is also moving ahead with plans to build all of its small cars for the U.S market at existing facilities in either Mexico or China, and to keep its USA plants building larger, more profitable vehicles. Ford has since confirmed it has adjusted production plans to move the new crossover to Mexico.

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