Ford’s Flat Rock Assembly plant is now building the Ford Fusion, the first time the vehicle has been built in the U.S., the automaker stated. Ford hired 1,400 new employees at the Flat Rock Assembly plant and building the vehicle at this plant will expand Fusion availability by 30 percent, up to 350,000 units annually, according to the automaker.
Ford said Fusion sales are up 13 percent in the U.S. this year, and that through July, the automaker sold more than 181,000 Fusions, which is 21,000 more units than the automaker sold during the same period last year.
The automaker has invested $555 million in the Flat Rock Assembly plant, including the addition of a fully flexible body shop, which allows multiple models to be produced on the same assembly line. Ford also upgraded the plant’s paint shop with its three-wet paint process. The automaker said this process is more environmentally friendly and takes less time than conventional paint processes without compromising paint quality or durability.
Ford plans to introduce “dirt detection” technology at the plant as well, in order to ensure optimal paint surface quality. The automaker also uses laser brazing to weld the roof of the Fusion to the body and create a high-quality and aesthetically pleasing seam.