Ford upgrading German factory to prepare for electrification

Ford has started to redesign its factory site in Cologne-Niehl. The new Electrification Center is to be built on the site, where the first electric model produced in Europe by the US carmaker is to roll off the production line from 2023.

First, a former warehouse was demolished, the company announced. The demolition was necessary because Ford’s new technologies in the future will require a new plant, according to the US American company.

The company timed the demolition of the old building to coincide with the plant holiday. In this way, the US car manufacturer wanted to avoid disrupting logistics during ongoing production. According to the information, more than 5,000 cubic metres of rubble will have to be removed in the course of the work.

A new “high-tech building” for the pre-treatment of body shells is to be built on the site of the old warehouse. Ford says the building will be 26 metres high, 25 metres wide and 100 metres long. The carmaker wants to start installing the facility there as early as next year. The first Ford electric model produced in Europe is reportedly scheduled to roll off the assembly line from 2023.

It was announced in February that the electric car built in Cologne will be based on Volkswagen’s modular electric drive system (MEB). Ford and the German vehicle manufacturer had signed the contracts for their global alliance in the fields of electrification, light commercial vehicles and autonomous driving in June 2020, paving the way for a Ford battery-electric car based on MEB.

Ford is investing around $1 billion to get the plant ready to build electric vehicles, according to information at the time. The production of a second electric model was also being considered. So far, Ford builds the Fiesta in Cologne. (in German)


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