Ford Investing Big Money in Ranger, Bronco, and Technology
Ford is dropping a cool $1.2 billion across three Michigan facilities and hiring hundreds of workers.
If you ever had any doubt about Ford’s commitment to the new Bronco, Ranger, and mobility development, this should squash it. The Blue Oval has said that it intends to invest a cool $1.2 billion dollars across three Michigan-based facilities to strengthen its position in the truck and SUV market, as well as expand its development of autonomous and mobility technology.
Of that money, $850 million will be used to retool Michigan Assembly Plant to build the new Ranger and Bronco. Production of the Ranger is currently scheduled to begin at the end of 2018, with Bronco production earmarked for 2020. Another $150 million will be used to expand engine component capacity at the Romeo Engine Plant, a move that will also add 130 jobs.
Retooling the Michigan Assembly Plant will take a mere four weeks once work begins in May. With mid-size truck sales rising nearly 50% over the last five years, reintroducing the Ranger to the North American market will help Ford capture a piece of that rapidly growing market. Rugged utilities like the Bronco have likewise been on fire, becoming the second fastest growing SUV segment over the same five year timeframe.
An additional $200 million is set to support Ford’s expansion into an auto and mobility company. This will be the second new data center in Michigan used to develop autonomous, electrified, and connected vehicles. The second center, located at Ford’s Flat Rock Assembly Plant, will receive a $700 million dollar investment and an additional 700 workers.