Ford India restarts EcoSport production for exports in Chennai plant: Report
Ford India has restarted production of its EcoSport compact SUV at the Chennai plant for export markets. The US auto major that has recently announced the closure of manufacturing operations in India has an export commitment of around 30,000 units. The company has to complete that by the end of 2021, reports IANS.
Meanwhile, Ford India's worker union has asked for a meeting with the top officials of Ford Motor Company. The meeting agenda is likely to involve the compensation for the workers after shutting down three of the OEM's four plants in India.
Ford India on September 9, announced that it will wind down the vehicle assembling operations in India. The automaker will close vehicle assembling in Sanand by the fourth quarter of this year. Also, both vehicle and engine manufacturing in Chennai will be closed by the second quarter of 2022. Only the engine manufacturing plant in Sanand will remain operational.
The Sanand engine manufacturing plant will continue producing powertrains for Ranger models sold in Asia-Pacific, Middle East and African markets as well.
The automaker makes EcoSport in Chennai, while Figo and Aspire models are built at Sanand. Besides the Indian market, the Chennai facility also makes EcoSport for export markets. The Chennai facility has recently stopped production for Endeavour SUV.
Ford India's decision to quit manufacturing operations in the country comes as a blow to the make-in-India initiative. Also, Ford became the latest automaker after Chevrolet, UM Motorcycles and Harley-Davidson to announce such a decision.
Ford's India's decision will result in an uncertain future for around 5,300 employees. The Chennai plant has around 2,700 permanent workers and about 600 staff. In Sanand, the number of workers is around 2,000. The automaker's engine plant in Sanand has more than 500 employees.