This goes against a promise Ford made to the UAW.
The union is threatening unspecified action against Ford.
About a year and a half ago, Ford announced that it was planning to build two new EVs, one for Ford and the other for Lincoln, at Ohio Assembly. Production was set to begin in mid-2023 with an anticipated volume of 75,000 units annually. Ford has just announced that it will not go forward with these plans, instead shifting production to Mexico.
Specifically, Ford now says that it will have these two new-generation EVs build at the plant in Cuautitlan, Mexico, alongside the Mustang Mach-E. The issue stems from a contract promise made to the UAW in late 2019 where the Avon Lake, Ohio, plant would not only receive a $900 million investment but the opportunity to build a “next-generation product” in 2023.
According to Automotive News (subscription required), the UAW accuses Ford of “corporate greed” and is threatening unspecified actions against Ford should it decide to go ahead with these changes. Gerald Kariem, head of the UAW-Ford department, said: Ford management expects us to just hang our heads and accept the decision. But let me be clear, we are making a different choice. We 100 percent reject the company’s decision to put corporate greed and more potential profits over American jobs and the future of our members. We expect the company to honor its contractual commitments to this membership and when it fails to do so we will take action.”
Currently, the plant assembles Super Duty F-650 and F-750 trucks and Ford intends to increase production and investments at the plant. Ford said in the letter, signed by Plant Manager Jason Moore. “The company has affirmed that commitment with the investment and additional full-time positions referenced previously. I firmly believe that this, coupled with our history of successful new-product launches, has put us in position to provide a significant advantage to the company’s competitiveness in the Commercial Vehicle segment.”