BlueOval City is Ford’s big new EV production project in the United States. If you’ve missed news on it, here’s a short summary of the project: “Ford has announced the groundbreaking of BlueOval City, its most recent and state-of-the art auto production complex that happens to be the largest one in the company’s 119 years since it was established. Ford knows that building enough EVs is going to take historic efforts, and a historic factory complex to support the effort.”
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Among other things, we heard that the project would involve $5.6 billion in investments from Ford and SK On to build production facilities for batteries as well as Ford and Lincoln electric vehicles. Those investments are expected to create more than 6,000 jobs.
Now we get news that Magna, one of the largest and most highly regarded automotive suppliers in the world, is jumping into the BlueOval pool as well. It is going to invest $790 million “to build the first two supplier facilities at Ford’s BlueOval City supplier park in Stanton, Tennessee,” the Tennessee Department of Economic & Community Development has announced.
While it’s apparently not within the BlueOval boundaries, Magna is also building a stamping and assembly facility in Lawrenceburg, Tennessee. All together, Magna is expected to create 1,300 jobs for Tennesseans.
Circling back to the reasoning behind BlueOval City, the point is that it’s all about manufacturing efficiency, rapid innovation, and tight loops of feedback and logistics in the supply chain. The COVID-19 pandemic, the Russian invasion of Ukraine, and related matters have made us more aware of how useful these things can be. Tesla, through its extensive vertical integration, has done a bit better through these global crises than others, and the leadership of Ford have come around to the idea that they should embrace this approach and vertical integration more so again.
“Ford’s on-site supplier park will allow for vertical integration that helps ensure efficient production at BlueOval City, which will be capable of producing 500,000 electric trucks a year at full production. Magna will supply Ford’s BlueOval City with battery enclosures, truck frames and seats for the automaker’s second-generation electric truck,” the Tennessee Department of Economic & Community Development (apparently a PR arm of Ford and Magna at the moment) writes. “Magna’s two facilities at BlueOval City supplier park include a new 800,000-square-foot frame and battery enclosures facility and a 140,000-square-foot seating facility. […] Magna will employ approximately 750 employees at its battery enclosures facility and 300 employees at its new seating plant.”
But that’s not all! “In addition, Magna will construct a new 400,000-square-foot stamping and assembly plant at the Team Lawrence Commerce Park – West, a Select Tennessee Certified Site in Lawrenceburg, Tennessee, that will produce truck frames. Magna will employ roughly 250 employees at this location.”
Production at all three of these new Magna facilities will begin in 2025 if all goes according to plan.
“I’m extremely proud for District 80 and excited that our coalition of TNECD, state and local officials have brought Magna and another $583.5 million dollars in new development to Haywood County as a result of BlueOval City. The growth that is happening here continues to be groundbreaking and breathtaking. I am grateful to be a part of this thrilling time,” Rep. Johnny Shaw (D-Bolivar) says.
“BlueOval City continues to transform the economy in Haywood County, Lawrence County and surrounding areas. These 1,200-plus new jobs will be a tremendous boost to our senate district’s economy. These investments will raise the quality of life for citizens and ensure our communities are a great place to live, work and raise a family. I appreciate the state and local officials who worked to secure these projects and bring more new jobs to Haywood and Lawrence counties,” notes Sen. Page Walley (R-Savannah).
If you want a job at these new Magna facilities, you can apply for one here: www.magna.com/southern-usa.
Magna also produces battery frames for the Ford F-150 Lightning in Ontario, Canada.
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