Fleet News

Mondeo delayed until 2014 as Ford restructures

Ford has confirmed the next-generation Mondeo would be delayed until 2014 if planned closure its Genk plant goes ahead, while it announces two UK facilities will close next year.

The current Mondeo is built at Ford's Genk plant in Belgium, which the company wants to close in 2013 to stem heavy financial losses in Europe.

Ford has also confirmed the planned closure of two UK facilities next year – Ford’s assembly plant in Southampton, and stamping and tooling operations in Dagenham.

Along with a previously announced initiative to reduce approximately 500 salaried and agency positions across Europe, with the Ford salaried reductions achieved voluntarily - affect 6,200 positions or about 13% of Ford's European workforce.

The Mondeo, the European version of which was unveiled at the Paris Motor Show in September, is already on sale in North America as the Ford Fusion but built domestically.

The European version of the car, initially planned for introduction in late 2013 is now expected to be delayed another 12 months as European plants are repurposed to deal with the restructuring.

“Using the same One Ford plan that led to strong profitability in North America, we will address the crisis in Europe with a laser focus on new products, a stronger brand and increased cost efficiency,” said Alan Mulally, Ford president and CEO.

“We recognize the impact our actions will have on many employees and their families in Europe, and we will work together with all stakeholders during this necessary transformation of our business.”

Ford's goal is to achieve employee reductions in the UK through voluntary means, enhanced employee separation programs and redeployment to other Ford locations. Actions in Genk are dependent on the outcome of the ongoing employee consultation process.

Paul Everitt, SMMT chief executive commented: "This is difficult and disappointing news for all the people and families affected by today’s announcement, but it is part of wider restructuring to ensure a stronger and more competitive European automotive industry. The immediate priority is to help those impacted secure alternative employment. The decline in European vehicle markets and the uncertain future growth prospects has resulted in a number of vehicle manufacturers restructuring their operations. These are difficult times for the European automotive industry as manufacturers adapt to new market conditions and changing patterns of global demand.”

The planned actions will reduce installed vehicle assembly capacity, excluding Russia, by 18 per cent or 355,000 units. The related gross annual savings total $450m (£300m) to $500m (£335m).

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  • Daniel - 25/10/2012 16:09

    Sad times for European Car manufacturing. On another mondeo related note, am I wrong in saying this Mondeo is already on sale in the states under another model name?, or is it just a look alike?. Its a shame as it looks amazing and would be just what the market needs, but I guess Ford has done their math on this.

    • Rob Chisholm - 25/10/2012 17:28

      @Daniel - it's called the Fusion in the States and yes it's already on sale. There would be homologation, specification and some quality differences between the US model and here. I guess we can look foward to even better value packed Mondeo models from Ford over the next couple of years then as it continues to try competing against the competition. That's no bad thing as the current car is a cracker in any event.

    • Daniel - 25/10/2012 17:38

      @Rob Chisholm - I agree it might also delay the new smax which means my nice new one may be paid off before the new shape arrives (maybe).

  • Martin Cordell - 25/10/2012 18:02

    They might actually sell more if they released an ST version!! There are a number of fans of the Mondeo ST who are fed up with being overlooked!!!!!

  • Will - 25/10/2012 19:18

    Yeah bring on a st!! Love my st tdci and would like the opportunity to buy a newer one if i could!!!

  • ian taylor - 25/10/2012 19:37

    We need Ford to make the Mondeo ST again. There has been no new model variation since 2007.

  • thesludge - 25/10/2012 19:39

    I love my Mondeo ST tdci - thing is, the last ones were made in 2007. Ford should seriously rethink the strategy and make a newer ST model. There are plenty of us ST owners about ready to part with our cash.

  • Whittle - 25/10/2012 23:14

    Ford need to learn from the success of the mk3 and the limitations of the mk4. The mk4 sold well as a fleet vehicle and they do ok in the second hand market, but the older they get the more they struggle. Better specced cars compete with the resale prices and in the end the mk4 is dull. Even the best spec TitX has only a basic level of kit and you have to get a Sport pack to make it look anything like interesting. It just doesn't appeal to drivers or enthusiasts - and history shows that is what Ford should be good at. Just look at how well a mk3 ST TDCi sells in the current market - still highly demanded today and still a better choice than a mk4. Don't make the same mistake with the mk5 Ford! If it is going to be late, make sure it is good and make sure someone injects some passion into it again! And you know the best place to STart - Sports Technology.

  • Grim_Reaper - 26/10/2012 09:32

    Ford actually has a version of the current Mondeo that is faster, better equipped, and better to drive than the old 155bhp ST TDCi - it's the 200bhp 2.2 TDCi and has been available for almost two years. It comes in either Titanium, Titanium X and Titanium X Sport equipment grades, the latter offering sporty looks. It seems you lot will have a while yet to get your orders in.

  • Julian - 05/12/2013 13:38

    Ford are losing sales whilst they dither on the European launch, may people like myself would be quite happy to get a new Mondeo, but will not do so with the New model looming around the corner. I am getting a little bored waiting and may seek other manufactures like the Passat High-line as an alternative.

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