After Ford disclosed 1,300 UK job cuts in the UK in its internal combustion operations, a union leader has warned that the British car industry faces the possibility of further severe job cuts without urgent support for electric vehicle investment from the government.
In light of rising costs and the necessity to accelerate its transition from gasoline and diesel engines to electric vehicles, the Ford announced that it would lay off 3,800 employees in administration and product development across the continent of Europe.
By 2026, Ford has stated that it will invest $50 billion (£41 billion) in the production of electric cars. But before it bans the sale of new petrol and diesel cars, it must also decide what to do with operations based on the internal combustion engine.
Ford’s move, according to the Unite union, which represents many of the affected UK workers, highlighted the dangers facing thousands of jobs in internal combustion technology in the British auto industry. According to the Faraday Institution, which is supported by the government, petrol and diesel technology are linked to about 100,000 automotive jobs in the UK.
Ford stated that it will eliminate approximately 2,300 jobs in Germany, 1,300 in the United Kingdom, and 200 in the rest of Europe through voluntary layoffs. There will be 2,800 engineering positions and another 1,000 administrative positions. In Europe, Ford employs approximately 34,000 people, 6,500 of whom are in the United Kingdom.
Ford’s technical center in Dunton, Essex, which is in charge of developing the Transit van, is expected to experience the majority of job losses in the UK. Transit diesel sales are expected to last for several years longer than sales of cars with internal combustion engines, but once the final European emissions standards are met in time for the 2025 deadline, there won’t be much need to design diesel engines.
Martin Sander, general manager of Ford’s European electric vehicle (EV) operations and head of its German business, said that that Ford aims to retain 3,400 engineers in Europe who will adapt core technology provided by their US counterparts to European customers.
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