By on November 5, 2019

UAW-affiliated Ford workers will vote by week’s end to ratify their union’s tentative four-year agreement with Ford Motor Company, or choose to kick it back in their faces and ask for something better. The General Motors contract, recently ratified, was a fairly close thing.

While bonuses, pay, and healthcare costs might be top of mind for most Ford employees, product is what concerns us here. Thankfully, leaked copies of the tentative agreement have emerged, providing a look at what vehicles we can expect Ford to build, and where.

For Michigan’s Flat Rock Assembly, it seems the near future won’t be as exciting as initially thought.

Bloomberg first broke the story that Ford, which has already changed its Flat Rock plans in the recent past, won’t have a pair of electric crossovers ready to join the Mustang and departing Lincoln Continental at the Michigan plant. Instead, sources said, Ford’s Ohio Assembly Plant will gain “new product” in 2023, greased with $900 million in plant upgrade cash.

These claims were quickly proven after the document came to light.

While Flat Rock will remain viable, building the next-generation Mustang ($250 million goes towards that effort), it seems the Continental is good and dead in the near future. Hardly a shock. The Mustang build includes “derivatives,” while the contract also guarantees that Flat Rock will remain open for the duration of the four-year term.

Originally, Ford tapped Flat Rock for production of the “Mustang-inspired” electric crossover, but soon punted assembly to Mexico. Earlier this year, news arose that the automaker planned a pair of Ford and Lincoln midsize EV crossovers for the plant come 2023. Now, Ohio seems to be the chosen home for those products. The plant will continue building E-Series cutaway and chassis models, as well as medium-duty trucks and Super Duty chassis cabs.

The contract states that Ford will continue “to explore future opportunities” for Flat Rock.

Elsewhere in the automaker’s assembly realm, Dearborn will be home to the electric F-150, joining the stock truck and its upcoming hybrid variant. A new Raptor will also make its appearance. That effort gets $700 million, according to details published by The Detroit News. Kansas City Assembly, in addition to the new F-150, will see production of a Transit EV commercial van.

In powertrain news, Dearborn Engine will gain a new mill during the contract term.

[Image: Ford]

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6 Comments on “UAW Contract: What Fords Go Where?...”

  • avatar

    It is almost shocking what Ford has become – a hollowed out maker of pickups. And maybe a few other CUVs and a sports car. More shocking perhaps when you read that with the PSA-FCA merger the 4 largest car companies are VW, Toyota, Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi, and PSA-FCA. This suggest the future of Ford as an independent company is at risk.

    • 0 avatar

      Ford and Honda are the logical partners. I can’t imagine the cultures at either place meshing, but product-wise it’s perfect.

    • 0 avatar
      Peter Gazis

      So where does that put Mercedes & BMW?

      • 0 avatar

        They have some of the same issues but at least are global brands in highly profitable segments. You are seeing them need to partner with other automakers on development of certain products – like BMW/Toyota and Merc/Nissan. Mandatory electrification to meet EU CO2 limits is going to be brutal for that market and those automakers that choose to stay in it.

    • 0 avatar

      “Ford has become – a hollowed out maker of pickups” and seem to be having a bit of problem with even that. My ’19 F350 (May 19 build) has three open recalls; one for a suspected bad passenger side rear axle (19S31), one for the reclining front seat back (19C07), and another for uncured power steering hoses (19B27).

    • 0 avatar

      Only in the USA, OVERSEAS, Ford still makes and sells cars.

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