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2,000 New Ford Kansas City Employees Celebrate Start of Production of Game-Changing 2015 Ford Transit Van
by Staff Report


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With 2,000 new jobs and a $1.1 billion investment, Kansas City Assembly Plant begins Ford Transit van production; Ford now more than 75 percent toward its goal of creating 12,000 hourly jobs in the United States by 2015
Ford Transit is the newest member of the nations best-selling and broadest lineup of commercial vehicles, providing customers Built Ford Tough durability, best-in-class maximum interior cargo height, and better cargo volume and payload capacity than competing vans from General Motors and Chrysler
Transit offers three roof heights, two wheelbases and three body lengths, offering more choices than ever from a Ford commercial van vehicle

Supported by 2,000 new employees and a $1.1 billion investment, the all-new Ford Transit van rolls off the line at Kansas City Assembly Plant today, as Ford aims to strengthen its leadership in the commercial vehicle segment.

On sale this summer, Ford’s next-generation full-size van family will provide tradespeople and businesses with increased capability and innovative new configurations in the growing commercial vehicle market.

It is another example of the company’s One Ford strategy to serve customers with world-class vehicles leveraging global assets, including common platforms. The move results in bringing new jobs to the greater Kansas City area.

“Producing our Built Ford Tough Transit lineup in Kansas City is a big deal for the local community,” said Joe Hinrichs, Ford president of The Americas. “Our investment in Kansas City Assembly Plant for Transit production is about delivering world-class commercial vans for a new generation of commercial customers – while building on our decades of leadership in the market and supporting new jobs throughout the region and across America.”

The 2,000 new Ford employees at Kansas City Assembly Plant puts the company more than 75 percent toward its goal of creating 12,000 hourly jobs in the United States by 2015. In 2014 alone, Ford will hire nearly 5,000 new hourly and salaried employees in the U.S. to support overall growth.

“Today represents much more than a next-generation vehicle rolling off an American assembly line for the first time, it represents another huge milestone for Missouri as we continue to lead the rebirth of the American auto industry,” Gov. Jay Nixon said. “With the all-new Transit, Ford’s historic investment in Missouri has brought another outstanding vehicle to consumers and thousands of good manufacturing jobs to our state. Today, the ‘Made in Missouri’ brand is back and stronger than ever.”

Ford Transit transformation
Transit is born from nearly a century of experience delivering two distinct full-size vans to customers in America, Europe and other global markets.

In the U.S., Transit eventually will replace America’s best-selling van for 35 years, the E-Series van, first sold in 1961 as Ford Econoline. E-Series vans and wagons still will be available and sold side-by-side with Transit into the 2014 calendar year, providing a seamless transition for Ford customers. Additionally, the E-Series cutaway and stripped chassis will continue to be built and sold through most of the rest of the decade.

Transit was introduced in Europe in 1965 and has been the best-selling commercial van in the UK for 49 years. Transit is currently sold in 118 markets on six continents.

The high-roof Transit – with best-in-class 81.5 inches of maximum interior cargo height – provides enough headroom for a person 6 feet 8 inches tall to stand upright in the cargo area.

The new Transit van offers as much as 487 cubic feet of cargo volume and 4,650 pounds of maximum payload capacity – more than competing vans from General Motors and Chrysler. The Transit van delivers a maximum towing capacity of 7,600 pounds.

In some configurations, Transit offers as much as much as 75 percent more cargo volume than the largest E-Series, helping customers save in fuel costs and time associated with having to make a second trip. Maximum payload increases more than 600 pounds across the Transit van lineup versus comparable E-Series vans.

Transit will be available in three body lengths, two wheelbases on van and wagon and three roof heights; in van, wagon, chassis cab and cutaway body styles; and in XL and XLT trim levels, offering more choices than ever from a Ford commercial van vehicle.

Moving from an all-gasoline engine lineup of two V8s and a V10 in E-Series, Transit comes standard with a 3.7-liter V6 engine and offers the Ford F-150’s 3.5-liter EcoBoost® engine, along with a globally proven available 3.2-liter Power Stroke® diesel option. Each engine is paired with a six-speed automatic transmission for efficient rear-wheel-drive operation.

Transit has been tested to Built Ford Tough truck standards at Ford proving grounds and in the hands of real-world fleet customers in North America.
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