Ford’s plant in Craiova celebrated today, May 16th, the beginning of the production for the 1.0-litre EcoBoost engine.
The company expects to produce 800,000 3-cylinder engines in 100, 120 and 125 PS variants in its factories in Germany and Romania from 2012 until 2015. Ford will also produce 480,000 vehicles equipped with the engine in 2015, compared to 141,000 in 2011. The assembly plant in Romania will also produce crankshafts, cylinder heads and cylinder blocks.
“Our initial vehicle customers are the Focus and the B-MAX. We have a capacity here of 350,000 engines per year on a 3-shift basis,” explained Ian Pearson, manager, Engine Operations, Ford Romania.
At the beginning of March, Ford announced it will employ 500 extra workers to produce the B-Max model and the EcoBoost engine, with the recruiting process ending this month. Ford plans to manufacture 60,000 B-Max vehicles in 2012 in Craiova and 100,000 more in 2013. In 2007, according to a privatization act, the company agreed to invest 675 million euro in technology and produce 250,000 units until March this year. Ford recently closed a deal with the Romanian government to delay some of the investments and some penalties for not reaching the production target.