Ford Motor Company is investing R2.5-billion to expand operations in South Africa at its Silverton Assembly Plant in Pretoria. These expansions will allow the Silverton plant to produce the all-new Ford Everest and the new Ford Ranger. These models will be distributed locally and exported to Sub-Saharan African markets.
The Silverton plant came to fruition in 2008 when Ford injected a R3.4 billion investment towards the plant, allowing it to be a world-class manufacturer of the Ford Ranger and the Duratorq TDCi engines.
Ford estimates that this expansion and investment will create a massive 1,200 jobs at Ford South Africa and within the South African supplier network.
Jim Farley, Ford executive vice president and president of Ford Europe, Middle East and Africa, had the following to say, “by producing the Everest in South Africa, we will be able to make it more readily available, and in a greater variety of models, for customers throughout Sub-Saharan Africa”.
With demand at an all-time high for the Ford Ranger, a portion of this new investment has been allocated to boosting Ranger production at the Silverton Assembly Plant.
The plant also uses a state-of-the-art automation system that will be able to produce 10 000 Everests per year.
The all-new Everest is currently imported from Thailand where only the 3.2-litre five-cylinder Duratorq TDCi engine is produced. It is currently only available in South Africa in 3.2 Automatic XLT and the range-topping Limited. However, once it becomes locally produced, a 2.2-litre Duratorq TDCi four-cylinder diesel engine will be added with a wider range of specs too! The newest generation of Duratorq TDCi diesel engines, used in the Ranger, are also built in South Africa in Port Elizabeth at Ford’s Struandale Engine Plant.
To further add to the growth in Africa, Ford announced in 2015 that the Ford Ranger will be assembled in Nigeria, using semi knock-down (SKD) kits and components imported from South Africa. Ford is committed to improving the skills of employees and broadening opportunities for South Africans. Eagle Ford looks forwards to more local developments thanks to Ford Motor Company South Africa!