Ford invests $1 billion in Chicago plants

Ford invests $1 billion in Chicago plants

Ford is investing $1 billion in Chicago Assembly and Stamping Plants and adding 500 new jobs as it prepares to launch three highly anticipated new SUVs that go on sale later this year.

The transformation at the plant, which will begin in March, will expand capacity for the production of the all-new Explorer - including the Explorer ST and Explorer Hybrid - the all-new Police Interceptor Utility and the all-new Lincoln Aviator. The work will be completed in the spring. The additional 500 full-time jobs bring total employment at the two plants to approximately 5,800.

With the Chicago investment, Ford is building an all-new body shop and paint shop at Chicago Assembly, and making major modifications to the final assembly area. At Chicago Stamping, the company is adding all-new stamping lines in preparation for the 2020 Explorer, Police Interceptor Utility and Lincoln Aviator. Advanced manufacturing technologies at the plants include a collaborative robot with a camera that inspects electrical connections during the manufacturing process. In addition, several 3D printed tools will be installed to help employees build these vehicles with even higher quality for customers.

The production of three new SUVs will add to Ford’s output in the United States. Ford was the No.1 producer of vehicles in the U.S. and the leading exporter of vehicles from the U.S., building nearly 2.4 million in 2018, and employs the most hourly U.S. autoworkers.

Employee-related improvements to make the plant a better place to work total $40 million and include all-new LED lighting, cafeteria updates, new break areas, and security upgrades in the parking lot. The company’s investment is supported by Ford’s strong partnership with the UAW, along with federal, state, county and local government.

Chicago Assembly, located on the city’s south side, is Ford’s longest continually operating vehicle assembly plant. The factory started producing the Model T in 1924 and was converted to war production during World War II. 

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