CHICAGO Ford Motor Co.
plans to hire more than 2,000 workers and add a third shift at
its assembly plant in Kansas City, Mo., in order to support
demand for its F-150 pickup and produce a new line of
"Customer demand for
todays F-150 is strong and continues growing, the truck
segment is growing three times faster than the overall
industry, the housing market is strengthening, and we are
seeing growth in the U.S. economy," Joseph Hinrichs, Ford
executive vice president and president of the Americas, said.
"We are going to expand operations in Kansas City to ensure we
have enough trucks to meet customer demand."
U.S. sales of Fords
F-Series trucks rose 24 percent in April and grew 19 percent
year to date compared with the same period a year ago, the
company said recently. Ford plans to add 900 jobs and a third
crew to build F-150s during the third quarter.
The Dearborn, Mich.-based
company will add another 1,100 jobs starting in the fourth
quarter to prepare for the introduction of its full-sized
Transit van, part of the new Transit family of commercial
vehicles, in 2014.
The Kansas City assembly plant
now makes the F-150 regular-, super- and crew-cab models,
employing 2,450 hourly workers on two shifts. It added a second
shift at the factory last July (
amm.com, July 25).
Ford is investing $1.1 billion
to retool and expand the facility for production of both the
F-150 and Transit, including a 437,000-square-foot stamping
facility, completed last year, and a 78,000-square-foot paint
More than 250 U.S. suppliers of
the Kansas City plant will benefit from the addition of a third
crew, according to Ford. When Transit production starts next
year, it will spur growth for close to 275 suppliers
nationally, the company said.
Detroit-based General Motors Co.
is in the midst of expanding its Kansas City, Kan., plant,
adding a 450,000-square-foot paint shop and new stamping press
amm.com, Jan. 29).