The Ford Focus isn’t the only US-market product that Ford Motor Company plans to source from China. According to a report from Reuters, Ford will consolidate global mid-size-sedan production in China in 2020, meaning that the Ford Fusion – or “Mondeo”, as it’s called in Europe – will be built in the Asian country. The North American Ford Fusion is currently produced at Ford’s plant in Hermosillo, Mexico, while the European-market Ford Mondeo is built in Valencia, Spain.
China is quickly replacing Mexico as a source of cheap manufacturing for the US auto industry. It was just last June that Ford announced US-market Ford Focuses would be imported primarily from China; the automaker had originally intended to build the compact car at a new plant in San Luis Potosi, Mexico after production of the current third-generation model leaves the Michigan Assembly Plant. That factory, located in Wayne, Michigan, is preparing to start producing the North American Ford Ranger pickup and Bronco SUV.
The shift also fits into Ford’s plans to focus more intently on the growing Chinese market, connecting more directly with customers there by increasing domestic production. Earlier this month, Ford said that it would start producing another five Ford and Lincoln models in China in 2019.
The shift of the US-market Ford Fusion away from Mexico and to China likely won’t come at the price of any Ford US manufacturing jobs, but parts suppliers with operations in the United States could be affected. Ford is by-and-large shifting more of its focus away from cars and toward trucks and SUVs in the US as more and more buyers embrace the larger vehicles.