On Monday, Ford Motor (NYSE: F ) shared that they're pushing back the production of their long-awaited Explorer SUV in Cologne by about six months. The reason behind this move, as explained by Ford's Germany chief, is to wait for the new generation of Volkswagen (ETR: VOWG_p ) battery tech to become available.
The chief mentioned in an interview at Munich's IAA car show that production is set to kick off in the summer of the following year. The German head also mentioned that talks were in progress to figure out the implications for the workforce in Cologne.
The American car manufacturer currently offers two fully electric SUVs and an e-Transit van in Europe. However, they have ambitious plans with seven new models slated for release by 2024, including two manufactured in Cologne and one in Romania. According to Martin Sander, the Ford Model e Europe General Manager, production of the second new model in Cologne, which is also based on Volkswagen's MEB platform, will start a few weeks after the first one.
Ford hasn't established precise production targets for these new models yet. According to Sander, they won't initially utilize the full capacity of the Cologne plant, which has the capability to produce 250,000 vehicles. Instead, they plan to gradually increase production in response to the growing demand for electric vehicles.
Shares of F are up 0.08% in premarket trading Tuesday.
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