Ford to move planned electric car production to Mexico from Michigan

GM unveiled plans last week to introduce its own on-demand ride-sharing service in several U.S. cities in 2019, using self-driving versions of the battery-powered Chevrolet Bolt.

The automaker announced in January that it would invest $700 million and create 700 jobs at a plant in Flat Rock, Michigan to build EV's, and that it would scrap plans for a new small car plant in Mexico. Production of the electric SUV is expected to start in 2020, while the autonomous vehicle will start rolling off the production line in 2021.

The news was celebrated by the incoming Trump administration, which claimed that it had convinced U.S. automakers to bring jobs home. That's compared to a $700-million investment and 700 additional jobs that had been planned before. The model will launch in China, where it's built. Ford currently builds the Fiesta there, which isn't very popular.

Ford is also trying to play catch-up on electric cars. "I can't wait to share more with you about our plans and promise to do so throughout this journey we're on to create the future".

Redirecting electric vehicle production to Mexico is about more than cutting costs, Ford President of Global Markets Jim Farley tells WSJ, as the move will make room for the Flat Rock factory to serve as Ford's "center of excellence" for autonomous vehicles. The automaker's first autonomous vehicle will be a gas-electric hybrid capable of operating for 20 hours a day. It won't shut down any U.S. production. NEVS is not planning on bringing this ex-Swede back to America.

Ford's Flat Rock Assembly Plant, in Michigan, builds the Mustang and the Lincoln Continental.

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