Forecasters say the chances of plant closures are slim.
Ford has not closed its North American assembly plant since the Twin Cities Assembly in St. Paul, Minnesota closed in 2011. It was a victim of a delay in Ford’s Way Forward restructuring plan announced in 2006 to cut costs.
While Farley is reorganizing the company under a new plan called Ford Plus, the company is making solid profits and is far from the dire situation of slipping into the Great Recession.
Sales of the Escape and Corsair have declined in recent years, but both are mass-produced crossovers competing in large segments. Even if Ford phases them out, it’s possible they’ll refurbish the factory for another product.
“No one is going to give up volume,” Brinley said.
But Fiorani said a shutdown cannot be ruled out entirely, especially as Ford prepares a new assembly plant in Tennessee as part of a $5.6 billion manufacturing facility.
“Adding capacity always puts older plants at risk,” says Fiorani. “Louisville is a big factory and has an established workforce. On the downside, it’s about to turn 70.”
Dunn said the Louisville Assembly workers he represents are open to building any type of vehicle, including EVs, if Ford chooses to retrofit.
“We just want to make sure we make products for Ford Motor Company,” Dunn said. “We want these jobs to be career jobs. Whatever it is, we want to remain open and viable.”
https://www.autonews.com/manufacturing/ford-louisville-plant-enters-2023-uaw-talks-without-plan Ford Louisville plant enters 2023 UAW talks, no plans