Reuters news agency reports today that Ford Motor Co will export the next-generation Focus compact car from China to North America in 2019, rather than from Mexico as earlier planned, saving the company $500 million. It is the first major manufacturing investment decision made by new Chief Executive Officer Jim Hackett, who succeeded Mark Fields in late May. The decision also signals a shift in strategy at Ford, which is responding to low fuel prices and to US consumer demand by de-emphasizing small cars while boosting US production of trucks and SUVs.
In January, after US President Donald Trump criticized Ford for shipping small-car manufacturing to Mexico, Ford said it would kill plans to build a $1.8-billion Focus plant in San Luis Potosi, Mexico and instead produce the new Focus at an existing plant in Hermosillo, Mexico. The White House had no immediate comment.
No existing US jobs will be affected by shifting Focus production to China, Ford said, adding that it employs more US hourly workers and builds more vehicles in the United States than any other automaker. The United Auto Workers declined to comment.
Reuters report found here.