Ford Motor Co. will build a new assembly plant in Mexico and sharply increase Mexican factory output, representing the latest shift of investment abroad by a Detroit auto maker following the signing of a costly new labor deal.
The No. 2 light-vehicle seller in the U.S. plans to add 500,000 units of annual Mexican capacity starting in 2018, more than double what it built in 2015, according to people briefed on the plan. The plan mirrors General Motors Co.’s $5 billion investment to double Mexican capacity by 2018.
Ford will build a new assembly complex in San Luis Potosi, and expand an existing factory near Mexico City. The moves will make room for several models, including a yet-to-be-disclosed hybrid vehicle that is described as a Toyota “Prius fighter,” and allow Ford to focus its U.S. factories on higher-profit trucks and sport-utility vehicles.