Ford Motor Company has outlined a C$1.8-billion (est. $1.34 billion) capital-investment plan to modernize and retool its Oakville (Ont.) Assembly Complex for electric vehicle manufacturing. Work on the project will begin during Q2 2024, and battery-electric passenger vehicle production – the first in Canada – will begin in 2025.
General Motors began assembling its BrightDrop battery-electric delivery vans at Ingersoll, Ont., late last year.
“It will be a modern, super-efficient, vertically integrated site for battery and vehicle assembly,” according to Ford president and CEO Jim Farley. “I’m most excited for the world to see the incredible next-generation electric and fully digitally connected vehicles produced in Oakville.”
Oakville Assembly presently has 3,400 employees and is producing the Ford Edge and Lincoln Nautilus models. The automaker has not indicated which of its EV models will be assembled at Oakville starting in 2025.
The current operation includes three body shops, a paint shop, and the assembly-line building. The redesign plan calls for a 407,000-sq.ft. plant to assemble EV batteries, with battery cells and arrays sourced from a new Ford complex in Kentucky. The battery packs assembled at Oakville will be installed in the EVs produced on the same site.
The Oakville project reportedly was incentivized by the Ontario and federal governments with separate contributions of $295 million each.
"Ford’s investment in retooling its Oakville plant will support thousands of good paying jobs and is an important milestone in our plan to become a leader in the electric vehicle revolution,” according to a statement by Ontario premier Doug Ford.