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Ford Motor Co.’s plant in Kansas City is adding 1,100 people to meet demand for electric vehicles

2022 E-Transit Production at Kansas City Assembly Plant
Ford Motor Company
The new E-Transit is produced at Claycomo, the first Ford plant in the U.S. to assemble both batteries and all-electric vehicles in-house

The company said its Claycomo plant northeast of Kansas City will add a third shift producing its popular Transit and E-Transit delivery vans.

It’s a good time to be in the electric vehicle business.

Ford Motor Co. announced on Thursday that it’s launching a major expansion here.

The company said its Claycomo plant northeast of Kansas City will add a third shift producing its popular Transit and E-Transit delivery vans, requiring 1,100 new workers and a $95 million investment to keep the van production side of the plant running almost around the clock.

The news came as part of an announcement detailing a major expansion of Ford’s manufacturing operations in the Midwest.

“We’re going to create 6,200 new UAW (United Auto Workers) jobs and invest $3.7 billion in Ford plants across the Midwest,” Kumar Galhotra, a top Ford executive, said at a news conference in Ohio this morning.

Most of the new jobs, 3,200 of them, will be added in Michigan, where Ford produces the Ford Ranger pickup truck, Ford Mustang and the popular F-150 Lightning electric pickup.

Ford’s Claycomo Assembly plant in in the Northland also makes F-150s, but not the battery-powered variant. Today’s announcement does not affect F-150 production there.

An assembly plant in Ohio will add 1,800 union jobs to start production of a new electric commercial vehicle, details about which are still under wraps.

Ford also unveiled good news for its current workers.

“We are committing $1 billion over five years to improve the work experience in our factories,” Kumar said.

Ford said it will provide better break rooms and stock them with healthier food, as well as improve lighting and other conditions.

It said it's also converting 3,000 temporary workers to full-time status with full benefits.

General Motors and the automotive group Stellantis have also recently announced multi-billion dollar investments in domestic electric vehicle production.

I’ve been at KCUR almost 30 years, working partly for NPR and splitting my time between local and national reporting. I work to bring extra attention to people in the Midwest, my home state of Kansas and of course Kansas City. What I love about this job is having a license to talk to interesting people and then crafting radio stories around their voices. It’s a big responsibility to uphold the truth of those stories while condensing them for lots of other people listening to the radio, and I take it seriously. Email me at frank@kcur.org or find me on Twitter @FrankNewsman.
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