Ford’s CEO and president Alan Mulally announced to Brazil’s president, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, plans to further expand the company’s Brazilian investments – increasing funding for Ford Brazil from 4 billion Brazilian reais (US$ 2.2 billion) to 4.5 billion reais (US$ 2.4 billion) from 2011 to 2015.
The investment marks the largest single amount Ford has invested in its Brazilian operations during a five-year window in its 90-year history in the country. This increased amount also takes Ford’s investment in South America to US$ 3 billion through 2015.
The focal point of Ford’s latest investment in Brazil is the development of a new global vehicle. Entirely developed in the Engineering Center of Camaçari, in the northeast of the country, the new Ford EcoSport small SUV, featuring advanced technologies and high quality, will be produced locally for both Brazilian and export markets.
Plus, for the first time in Ford Brazil’s history, this Brazilian-engineered vehicle will be produced in other countries around the world.
The EcoSport will be developed from a small vehicle – or B-sized – platform engineered in Europe. By 2014, this vehicle platform will deliver up to 1.6 million global vehicles annually, including up to five separate vehicle lines and eight top hats.
“Developing truly global vehicles and platforms is a key part of our ONE Ford plan,” Mulally said. “Ford Brazil already has demonstrated its skill in creating great vehicles, and with such a strong team in place at our engineering center in Camaçari, we’re pleased that customers around the world will benefit from that.
“Ultimately, our goal is to offer customers in every part of the world a full family of exciting Ford vehicles – small, medium and large cars; utilities and trucks – with best-in-class safety, quality, fuel efficiency, smart design and value,” he added.