Ford is about to start assembling gas-powered, electric, hybrid and plug-in hybrid vehicles in its remodeled Michigan assembly plant that now is the size of 22 football fields.
Ford recently invested $550 million to remodel the plant. Improvements include a three-wet-paint booth that utilizes 66 paint robots with seven axes of movement to precisely apply paint to the cars and 500 robots in the body shop, capable of 4,000 welds per vehicle. But it's not just robots assembling cars; the 1.2-million-square-foot plant has 3,200 employees.
"We've modernized just about every square foot of this facility to establish a new standard for a high-tech, green, flexible and efficient auto factory," said Jim Tetreault, Ford vice president of North America Manufacturing. "The transformation of Michigan Assembly Plant stands as a symbol for the transformation of Ford."
The plant will, for example, produce the. Four-door and five-door versions will come early next year. An all-new plug-in hybrid will be available in late 2012, Ford said in a statement.
"We are leveraging our people, processes, and products to consistently build cars that will surpass the competition," said Tetreault. "This plant embodies everything we as a company strive to become--modern, efficient, flexible, global, and sustainable."