At the same time, Ford announced an investment of £1.5 billion over five years in its four UK sites. The UK Government will provide loan guarantees of £360 million.
The Dagenham Diesel Centre, Dunton Research and Development Centre, Bridgend engine centre and the Transit plant in Southampton will see a share of the investment into low carbon vehicles.
Ford produces a range of diesel engines at its state of the art factory running alongside the River Thames in Essex. Not only do the diesel units power Ford cars and vans in Europe, they also provide power to Jaguar, Land Rover, Mazda and Volvo. In its lowest CO2 form, the 1.6-litre TDCi engine fitted to the Fiesta ECOnetic produces just 98g/km of CO2, while the Focus ECOnetic emits 99g/km and features stop/start technology.
At the Southampton plant, the legendary Transit is produced, with engines supplied by the Diesel Centre at Dagenham.
Ford’s Bridgend factory will start production of its newest engine range shortly, dubbed EcoBoost, and will be available first in the C-MAX people carrier later this year.
Ford of Britain chairman, Joe Greenwell, said: “Ford welcomes this positive support from the Government. It greatly assists in delivering Ford’s commitment to invest £1.5 billion in new, affordable, volume-produced low CO2 technologies.”
When questioned whether the UK Government will buy more UK built and engined vehicles by our man Robertson, Lord Mandelson said “my ministerial Jaguar is UK built and comes equipped with a Ford engine.”