of Canada ceases production at its Windsor, ON, Canada, casting plant as the auto maker moves away from in-house casting operations to focus on its core automotive business.
In operation since 1934, the plant most recently produced cylinder block castings for 4.2L V-6 engines and crankshafts for 4.2L V-6, 5.4L V-8, 3.0L V-6, 4.6L V-8 and 2.3L mills.
The plant employed some 450 workers, who have been offered financial assistance packages worth up to C$100,000 ($93,184) to be used for retirement or to â€śmove their careers in new directions,â€ťsays, adding it has also partnered with the Ontario government to open an employment counseling and training center for employees impacted by the auto makerâ€™s restructuring.
While difficult, the decision to shutter the facility was necessary, says Adrian Vido, Windsor site manager.
â€śThe companyâ€™s decision to move away from in-house casting operations is based on a thorough analysis of our business and a need to focus on our core operations,â€ť Vido says in a statement.
The decision to mothball Windsor Casting follows an announcement earlier this month that Ford will close its Cleveland (OH) Casting facility by 2009.
Following the Cleveland announcement, Joe Hinrichs, Fordâ€™s vice president-North American manufacturing, told Wardâ€™s the auto maker will be outsourcing all its casting operations in the future.
â€śItâ€™s more economical to outsource casting,â€ť Hinrichs says. â€śWe want to prioritize how we use capital in the future and where our key customer interfaces are. Engines and transmissions are important, but castings are not as core.â€ť
Hinrichs did not disclose who would supply castings in the future, revealing only that the auto maker is â€śgoing through the sourcing process.â€ť