Report: VW-based Ford electric vehicle will be built in Germany

A previously-discussed Ford electric car based on Volkswagen’s MEB platform will be built in Germany, at one of the Blue Oval’s own factories, Automotive News reported Sunday.

Ford will invest $1.2 billion in a factory located in Cologne to ready it for electric-car production, according to the report, which cited local newspaper Koelner-Stadt Anzeiger

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The factory reportedly designated for EV production currently builds the Ford Fiesta subcompact, but Ford has been building cars in the region since the 1930s. Cologne reportedly beat out a Ford factory in Romania for the job.

In response to the report, a Ford spokesperson told Automotive News that the company does not comment on speculation. However, in 2019, then-Ford CEO James Hackett said the MEB-based electric car would be built at a Ford factory in Europe.

VW MEB platform

VW MEB platform

Talk of a potential Ford/VW collaboration on EVs goes back to 2018, with the two automakers confirming a partnership in January 2019.

Later that year, Ford and VW elaborated that the deal would include a Ford electric car for Europe, based on VW’s MEB platform, and scheduled to launch in 2023.

Ford also still has access to Rivian’s platform, and is potentially working on a different EV for the United States, after plans for a Rivian-based Lincoln EV were aborted.

This strategy will give Ford an unusual mix of EVs based on outsourced platforms, and vehicles developed completely in-house, such as the Mustang Mach-E electric SUV and the upcoming F-150 Electric pickup truck, expected to launch in 2022. The Mach-E is built in Mexico, while the F-150 will be built alongside internal-combustion versions of the truck in Michigan.