Ford plans to spend US$55m converting a factory that used to make V8s to build its new V6 EcoBoost engines which the company says are 20% more fuel efficient than the V8s and will help it meet new fuel economy rules to be announced today (19 May) by President Obama.

The Cleveland plant built the famous 'Boss' 302 V8s. Ford's 'Cleveland' engines were once legendary amongst car enthusiasts but the factory closed in 2007.

The new EcoBoost V6s will be used in 90% of Ford models by 2013, the company said. It is hiring 250 workers for Cleveland.

Earlier this month, Ford said it would retool an SUV plant in Michigan at a cost of $550m to build small cars.