Ford is investing $1 billion and hiring 500 new employees at two Chicago factories

FordA worker at Ford’s Chicago assembly plant.

  • Ford will invest $US1 billion and hire 500 new employees at its stamping and assembly plants in Chicago, the automaker said on Thursday in a press release.
  • The moves come as Ford prepares to expand production of new versions of its Explorer and Aviator SUVs.
  • The investment will include new body and paint shops at its Chicago assembly plant, new stamping lines at its Chicago stamping plant, new manufacturing equipment, and revamped employee facilities.
  • The plants will have a total of around 5,800 employees after the new round of hiring is finished.

Ford will invest $US1 billion and hire 500 new employees at its stamping and assembly plants in Chicago, the automaker said on Thursday in a press release. The moves come as Ford prepares to expand production of new versions of its Explorer and Aviator SUVs.

The investment will include new body and paint shops at its Chicago assembly plant, new stamping lines at its Chicago stamping plant, new manufacturing equipment, and revamped employee facilities. The plants will have a total of around 5,800 employees after the new round of hiring is finished.


Read more: Ford’s CFO says the automaker’s $US11 billion restructuring plan could pay off sooner than expected

Ford’s redesigned Aviator and Explorers come as the automaker, as well as competitors like General Motors and Fiat Chrysler, shift away from sedans in favour of the SUVs and light trucks that have taken a larger share of the automotive market in the past decade.

Ford is in the middle of a $US11 billion restructuring that has included job cuts in the North America and Europe. The automaker’s 2018 earnings, which included a $US7 billion operating profit and a profit margin of 4.4% for the year, aligned with Wall Street predictions, but fell short of internal expectations. Ford cited tariffs and a lack of clarity about Britain’s forthcoming exit from the European Union as reasons for concern in 2019, and analysts have criticised CEO Jim Hackett for failing to outline a clear vision for the automaker’s future.

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