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Guess What Trump? Ford Is Moving Production To Mexico After All

Autonomous Car / 128 Comments

So, where's your Twitter response?

President Trump made a big deal of this sort thing on both the campaign trail and in office. However, according to Bloomberg, Ford has changed its mind. Instead of building its future electric SUV at its Flat Rock facility in Michigan, it'll do so instead in Mexico. How come? Cheaper labor costs. Go figure. Shifting production south of the border will help make a better business case for Ford, but at the same time it now risks negative publicity courtesy of Trump.

Remember, it was Trump who once publicly criticized Ford for an earlier plan to build a future small car in Mexico instead of in America (it'll now be built in China instead). Ford ultimately reversed that decision, although it claims it didn't do so to remain on the current administration's good side. So why is Ford now literally doing the same thing again, only with a different vehicle? "They have to do what's best financially and this electric vehicle is not going to be huge" in regards to sales, according to Michelle Krebs, an Autotrader analyst. However, moving production of this still unnamed SUV to Mexico allows Ford to increase production at Flat Rock, specifically for self-driving vehicles.

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Ford is planning a $200 million investment in the facility which will also see an additional 150 new jobs. That autonomous vehicle will launch in 2021 while the Mexican-built EV SUV production will get underway the year before. Since the news broke of Ford's latest production plan, President Trump has remained silent, both verbally and on Twitter. Although Trump wants to make changes to the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) that could affect automakers like Ford and its Mexico operation, Ford simply could not wait in this case to make a decision; that EV SUV needs to come to market soon. Ford will just have to take a chance regarding any future NAFTA changes that could potentially hurt its bottom line.