Ford Authority

Unifor Says Ford EV Delay Will Have ‘Wide-Reaching Impacts’

Earlier this month, The Blue Oval officially announced that it was pushing back its planned production start dates for both the three-row Ford Explorer EV at the Oakville Assembly plant in Canada, as well as the next-generation Ford F-150 EV at the Tennessee Electric Vehicle Center. However, before the automaker could make that announcement, this news leaked out a couple of weeks prior, which obviously didn’t go over well with the Canadian union Unifor, given the fact that it reportedly wasn’t informed of this decision at that time. The union later admitted that it was “extremely disappointed” by this development – which will apparently leave the plant idle for a couple of years after Ford Edge production ends this month – and now, Unifor has warned that this decision will have “wide-reaching impacts” as well, according to Automotive News Canada.

“This is a pretty huge decision with wide-ranging and wide-reaching impacts on a lot of people,” said Unifor President Lana Payne. The union was informed of Ford’s decision to delay the start of EV production at Oakville roughly two days before the automaker made its official announcement via a meeting at the automaker’s Dearborn headquarters, though the plant will still be retooled for EV production in Q2 of this year as originally planned.

Problem is, the fact that production of the three-row Ford Explorer EV won’t begin until 2027 – instead of 2025, as originally planned – will reportedly “at least triple” the time on layoff for that facility’s 3,200 union workers. Originally, those workers were expected to be laid off between six and eight months during the retooling process, but now, that will reportedly stretch to somewhere between 2.5 and 3.5 years. Some of those workers will receive Supplemental Unemployment Benefits (SUB) equivalent to 70 percent of their wages, but these terms vary based on seniority. Payne did note that Unifor will meet with Ford to seek additional income support, however.

This long layoff won’t just impact Unifor workers, – it’s also of particular interest to the Canadian government, which has pledged to invest $590 million in Oakville for its retooling process, which the automaker made specific commitments to secure. Additionally, numerous suppliers could also be forced to lay off workers amid this downtime as well. Regardless, Ford previously stated that “the company will work with Unifor to mitigate the impact the launch delay will have on its workforce at Oakville.”

We’ll have more on Unifor soon, so be sure and subscribe to Ford Authority for ongoing Ford news coverage.

Brett's lost track of all the Fords he's owned over the years and how much he's spent modifying them, but his current money pits include an S550 Mustang and 13th gen F-150.

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  1. John

    Hopefully these union members take a long look at the politicians, hedge funds, and execs who were pushing these EVs so hard and fast and why, and how they got it so wrong.

  2. Bill

    2027 could be delayed as Ford admits to focusing on low cost EV platforms.

  3. JW

    The grassroots boycott against EVs worked. Big thank you to the repair shops who informed customers of EV failures, automotive discussion forums who pushed the boycott, and educated husband’s that talked spouses out of buying one. Hybrids are next for the boycott. Nice to see boycotts working!

  4. Dave Mathers

    Politicians have been pushing EVs way too hard when the market and the infrastructure are just not ready for them. Don’t blame Ford, blame Ottawa and Washington.


    This is just the start of problems that will be seen in the next couple of decades as global governments attempt to make rapid social changes in latent attempts to curb the effects of global warming. This transition should have started decades ago. The cost for society will just continue to escalate.

    1. Tigger

      Thing is if you take away all ICE powered vehicles from the roads and close all coal and gas fueled power plants, it would not cool the earth even a tenth of a degree- all at a cost of tens of thousands of dollars for consumers, hundreds of thousands of lost jobs, and billions wasted by corporations in a futile attempt to curb something that cannot be changed.

  6. Tigger

    Too bad Uniform did not negotiate the right to strike over plant closings like the UAW did.

  7. Secret sauce

    This plant will close FYI – get ready…
    Canada is not competitive anymore, costs have ballooned way too high…Ford will be redirecting more investment to Mexico.

    UAW also better watch 🙂 you played hard ball and now you will pay the price – announcements to happen in the next couple years.

  8. Anonymous

    Shocker, Something that Western and northern Canada didn’t want because they can’t handle the cold weather isn’t getting enough support financially to open.


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