US carmaker Ford began adapting the Craiova plant to start producing EcoSport model, scheduled for autumn this year. Thus, the existing 320 industrial robots that handle B-Max production will be supplemented by 190 multifunctional robots that are going to be installed in Coachwork section.
SUV manufacturing for fall 2017 was officialy announced by the President and CEO of Ford Europe, Jim Farley in March 2016. EUR 200 million investment is involved and almost half of the amount was granted just for the factory’s body shop.
“We are up to date on everything related to the transformation process of the factory in Craiova, which is increasingly closer to receive the new EcoSport model on its manufacturing lines. Our teams are fully dedicated to provide excellent product launch, the more so as we want to show that the factory in Craiova is the right ‘home’ for the new EcoSport thanks to the people and operations that Ford has here,” John Oldham, Ford Romania president, stated.
The facelifted small-sized crossover manufactured in Romania will be sold in Europe and is meant to save the unit in Craiova and bring it to levels close to other Ford plants. The factory in Craiova is the only one to manufacture just one model (currently Ford B-Max).
There have been also made changes in ‘General Assembly’ section which currently produces B-Max every 100 seconds, Ford representatives say. Trim line of this section has been extended to make room for new workstations needed to manufacture the EcoSport model.