For decades, the subcompact Ford Fiesta has been a staple in Europe and other regions, with the current version receiving a refresh for the 2022 model year. But due to a shift in plans and The Blue Oval’s EV pivot, the long-running nameplate is being retired very soon. According to a report from Autocar, the very last examples of the Fiesta will be produced at the Cologne plant on July 7th, 2023.
According to the site, the automaker is holding onto the last two examples of the Fiesta, with one joining the company’s international heritage fleet at the plant. The other will join the UK heritage fleet. As for why the company opted to end production Ford Model e general manager Martin Sander outlined to Autocar why production was coming to an end. “We decided to build our first high-volume electric vehicle here in Cologne,” said Sander. “There comes the point where we need the space for construction, because we are turning the Fiesta plant into a fully battery-electric plant. This is why we had to make a decision that we have to stop Fiesta production.”
After Ford Fiesta production ends, the freshly renamed Cologne Electric Vehicle Center will switch over to electric Ford Explorer production. While it shares a name with the Ford Explorer that’s sold in several regions, it is a completely unrelated vehicle. The model – which was officially revealed earlier this year – is based off VW architecture and will help the company achieve a global EV production run rate of 600,000 units by 2024. Later this year, a second vehicle based off the same platform is expected to debut, possibly bearing the Capri name. Like the Fiesta, the Capri was a popular vehicle in Europe.
As Ford Authority reported earlier today, the news arrives at the same time the automaker is set to make a decision about Saarlouis Assembly plant, its second manufacturing facility in Germany. Recent reports indicate Ford has attracted a major investor that is interested in its operation, although it is currently unclear if the unnamed company is looking to buy it outright or work with The Blue Oval on a new project. That plant is slated to produce the Ford Focus until 2025.