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U.S.A.:Ford to build Focus in Michigan, not Mexico

Automotive News
Reuters / December 04, 2003

DETROIT -- Ford Motor Co. said Thursday that it would spend $240 million to consolidate North American production of its Ford Focus car in Michigan, transferring work from a Mexican plant.

The move will clear space at Ford's Hermosillo plant in Mexico for production of the Ford Futura, a mid-sized sedan due in 2005. The $240 million will be spent over the next four years, as Ford adds to its Wayne, Mich., plant that already builds Focus sedans and wagons in order to build the Focus hatchbacks now assembled in Hermosillo.

Ford and state officials welcomed the move as a small step against the steady flow of auto industry manufacturing jobs to Mexico and other lower-cost countries. While the move will not add any hourly workers to the 3,500 already employed at Wayne, Ford North American chief Jim Padilla said the move would boost job security.

State officials said Ford would eventually spend $583 million at the Focus plant and the adjacent Michigan Truck factory that produces SUVs. The state gave Ford $48.8 million in tax breaks in return for the plant spending.

After a rough launch in 1999, Ford has begun touting the compact Focus again, saying its quality problems have been fixed, as evidenced by Consumer Reports giving the Focus a "recommended" rating this year.

While Ford will roll out an all-new Focus in Europe next year, a tweaked version of the current North American model, with updated front and rear designs, a new interior and more powerful engines, will go on sale early next year.

Focus sales through November are down 6.8 percent.

My first car was a 67 Mustang Coupe, 2nd one was a 67 Cougar XR-7, 3rd one was a 66 Mustang Coupe. Why did I get rid of these cars for ? I know why, because I'm stupid, stupid, stupid.

My next Ford.....
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