Ford has poured an additional £190 million into its engine production facility in Dagenham.
This brings the manufacturer’s total investment into the London facility to around £477 million, which will be put towards the manufacture of new diesel engines.
On top of that, the move will also create a total of 318 new jobs, boosting the economy and providing employment for the local workforce.
Following the original investment from the government’s Regional Growth Fund, the new cash boost will aid the production of the new high-tech 2.0-litre engines.
The first phase of production will see the manufacture of low-carbon diesel engines for Ford’s commercial vehicle range, while the second will produce engines for passenger cars.
Designed and developed at the Dagenham plant, with input from Ford’s Dunton technical centre, the first phase of engines will come off the line towards the end of next year.
Ford estimates that production will be up to 350,000 units a year, which is roughly equivalent to one new engine produced at the plant every 30 seconds.
The second phase of production is currently scheduled to begin in 2017, with the new engines appearing in Ford’s passenger car range from 2018 onwards.
An estimated capacity of 150,000 units will bring the Dagenham plant’s annual production up to half a million units.
According to the carmaker, the new engines will produced dramatically lowered NOx emissions, with an estimated 84 per cent reduction in NOx emissions over diesel engines from 14 years ago.
What does David Cameron think?
Prime Minister, David Cameron, said: “I welcome Ford’s commitment to Dagenham and the UK, which is a vote of confidence in our long-term economic plan to back business, create more jobs and secure a brighter future for Britain.
“We are backing our automotive sector so that it continues to thrive and this investment, supported by £8.9 million from Government’s Regional Growth Fund, will create more jobs that mean financial security and economic piece of mind for more hardworking families.”
Earlier last month, Ford’s Dagenham facility celebrated the production of its three millionth engine made at the factory.
Martin Everitt, plant manager at the Dagenham facility, said: “This milestone demonstrates the strong demand for clean, powerful, yet economical, small-capacity diesel engines.”
So far, Ford has invested more than £1.5 billion into the production and development of low-carbon engines, which includes the production of the hugely popular 1.0-litre petrol EcoBoost.