British skills secure Dagenham plant
Ford has been making diesel engines in Dagenham for 80 years. July saw the 40-millionth engine roll off the production line at the Dagenham Diesel Centre, which was opened in 2003 at a cost £400 million.
The centre makes four different engines on two assembly lines that run 24 hours a day, in a three-shift operation. Around 2,000 people work on the premises, which are partly powered by onsite wind turbines.
Ford has pledged to invest £1.5 billion over five years in the UK. Ford of Britain chairman Joe Greenwell explains that one of the reasons for doing this is the skill set that already exists. He says: “The Dagenham plant supplies 50% of Ford’s diesel engine requirements globally. To build that up from scratch is something pretty special. There is a history of design, development and manufacture here. Down the road from Dagenham, our Dunton technical centre has 3,500 engineers. They have developed fantastic expertise in engine design, which we export around the world."
Big spenders: investment by UK-based carmakers in 2011-12
Factories: Oxford, Swindon, Hams Hall near Birmingham
Investment: About £750 million spent on facilities and equipment since 2011. The number of Mini models will increase to 10 and, potentially, extra production capacity will be created in Swindon.
Jobs: 5,500 safeguarded
Models: Civic, CR-V, Jazz
Investment: Production volumes forecast to double to 180,000 units with the addition of a second shift. Mass production of the new Civic has already begun.
Jobs: 500 created
Jaguar Land Rover
Jaguar factory: Castle Bromwich in the West Midlands
Models: XF, XJ, XK
Land Rover factories: Solihull, Halewood
Models: Defender, Discovery, Evoque, Freelander, Range Rover
Investment: About £1 billion will be spent over the next four years in the UK supply chain and a new logistics facility in Ellesmere Port, Cheshire. An all-new sports car – the F-Type – will be produced at Castle Bromwich. At Land Rover’s Solihull plant £490 million is being invested to build the C-X75 all-hybrid supercar. Some £2 billion is being spent at Halewood to create the Range Rover Evoque. Halewood will expand to enable increased production. And £355 million will be invested in a new Midlands facility to manufacture low-emission engines.
Jobs: 300 created at Ellesmere logistics centre, 1,100 created at Castle Bromwich, 1,000 at Solihull, 4,000 at Halewood, 3,000 at Midlands engine plant
Models: Juke, Note, Qashqai
Investment: Some £921 million in recent years, including £410 million for the production of the electric Leaf from 2013, £127 million to produce an as yet unnamed mid-sized model, £125 million to produce the Invitation and £192 million for the new Qashqai.
Jobs: 625 created at the Sunderland plant and 2,375 within the supplier base
Factory: Burnaston, Derby
Models: Auris, Avensis
Investment: About £100 million to produce new-generation hatchbacks.
Jobs: 1,500 created
Factory: Ellesmere Port in Cheshire
Investment: Investment: Some £125 million to continue manufacturing at Ellesmere Port. Production of the new Astra is set for 2015, with the plant running three shifts.
Jobs: 700 created