Published October 15, 2012
By Philippe Crowe
It looks like the plant that assembles the Focus Electric – and will also assemble the C-MAX Hybrid and C-MAX Energi plug-in hybrid – is considered one of the best in the country.
Ford Motor Company’s Michigan Assembly Plant has been named Assembly Plant of the Year by Assembly Magazine.
It is the first time an automaker, as well as a plant in Michigan, has earned the honor.
“MAP is an example of Ford manufacturing at its best – a flexible facility that is using a highly trained work force to build fuel-efficient vehicles in an environmentally friendly manner,” said Jim Tetreault, Ford vice president of North America Manufacturing. “We are proud that our hard work has been recognized by experts who know manufacturing.”
According to Assembly Magazine, the goal of the Assembly Plant of the Year award is to identify a state-of-the-art facility that has applied world-class processes to reduce production cost, increase productivity and shorten time to market or improve product quality.
“We chose MAP as our 2012 winner because the plant is a showcase for flexible, green, lean manufacturing,” said Austin Weber, senior editor for Assembly Magazine. “We were also impressed that Ford took a plant that produced large SUVs and turned it into a state-of-the-art facility that makes fuel-efficient small cars. That’s not something that we often see in manufacturing.”
Following a $550-million transformation, Ford re-opened MAP in early 2010 with production of the 2012 Focus. Ford has since added the Focus Electric zero-emission battery electric vehicle and the Focus ST performance model. The company is now ramping up production of the C-MAX Hybrid and C-MAX Energi plug-in hybrid.
In May, MAP added a third production crew with 1,200 new jobs. The plant currently employs 5,170 workers.