Detroit, Michigan – As talks continue between Ford and the United Auto Workers (UAW) union, the automaker has recently announced the pausing of further construction of a US$3.5 billion electric vehicle battery plant in rural Michigan.
In February of this year, Ford initially announced its plans to build the plant in Marshall, Michigan with the expectation of employing 2,500 workers to make lower cost batteries for both new and existing vehicles.
The factory was to start its production of batteries in 2026 with a planned output of enough battery cells to supply 400,000 Ford vehicles per year.
On Monday, Ford announced the halt to production stating that it is going to wait until it is confident it can run the plant competitively.
According to the automaker, the move comes in part as a response to UAW’s current strike actions against the Detroit 3 automakers.
Other reasons for the delay include local opposition to the factory location and a political resistance to the involvement of Contemporary Amperex Technology (CATL), a Chinese company specializing in lithium-ion phosphate production.
Despite delays and local political resistance to both building site and global investor partnerships, Ford spokesman, TR Reid, reiterated that the plant is not, as of yet, dead in the water.
“There are a number of considerations,” he said, “we haven’t made any final decision about the planned investment there.”