Over the past ten months, HSSMI has supported Ford Motor Company with their ATF application, in a bid to unlock government funding towards anchoring Ford’s future European e-drive facility in the UK. As part of the application, Ford’s existing ICE transmission facility in Halewood was proposed to be transformed towards producing up to 250,000 e-drives by 2025, thereby futureproofing the facility and people who work there.
With support from HSSMI, Ford have secured vital funds from the government that help to rebalance the business case towards ensuring that future e-drive European production takes place in the UK.
The Case for European E-Drive Production
As part of a $22bn global investment into electrification by 2025, Ford Motor Company are planning to make all passenger vehicles in Europe all-electric by 2030 and to make two-thirds of its entire commercial vehicle range all-electric by the same date.
This strategy has created significant manufacturing and R&D opportunities in Europe, and a case exists for anchoring a future electric drive (e-drive) manufacturing facility in Europe. Two main sites were shortlisted, one being the existing ICE transmission plant in Halewood, UK.
The Support Provided by HSSMI
Given HSSMI’s experience in successfully bidding for and unlocking strategic investment funds for UK based OEMs, as well as a strong pre-existing relationship with Ford Motor Company, Ford approached the HSSMI team to support their application to the UK’s Automotive Transformation Fund. UK government funding would help secure Ford’s future e-drive manufacturing facility at Halewood as the support is required to close the gap between the budget and the projected costs involved in transforming the facility.
HSSMI’s bid writing team worked closely with the Ford team to pull together a robust business case for funding. This included the following:
The application was submitted to and received positively by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and an in-principle letter was secured in September 2021. Ford are expecting to conclude the due diligence phase and kick off the project in 2022.
Benefits for Ford and the Wider Industry
Thanks to the successful bid and the expected government support, Ford’s vehicle transmission facility at Halewood on Merseyside will now be transformed to build electric drive units for future Ford all-electric passenger and commercial vehicles. Halewood will become Ford’s first electric motor production facility in Europe, with production beginning in 2024. This ensures that Ford is well on its way to reaching its ambition of having 100 percent of its passenger vehicles in Europe as all-electric and two-thirds of its commercial vehicles as all-electric or plug-in hybrid by 2030.
The decision to invest in Halewood will safeguard the existing jobs at the site and result in many more created to support e-drive production. This will boost the e-drives supply chain in the UK, with the investment enabling the creation of new capacity, capability and ultimately strengthening the UK offer at different tiers to support future investments from other OEMs.
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