Engine production at Ford of Canada's Windsor and Essex Engine Plants was up 6.8 percent to 847,000 units during the first six months of the year and is on track to eclipse the 1.5-million engine production record established in 1999.
"Six months of robust vehicle sales in Canada and the United States have benefited our Windsor operations which manufacture engine and engine components for some of Ford's most popular cars and trucks," said Bobbie Gaunt, President and CEO, Ford of Canada. "All signs point to another record year of Ford of Canada engine production in Windsor."

Windsor-made engines power several Ford cars and light-duty trucks, including Ford Windstar and Ford F-Series -- both ranked among Canada's top- three best selling vehicles during the first half of 2000.

Between January and June 2000, Windsor Engine Plant produced 484,000 Triton V-8 and V-10 engines, an 8.0 percent increase over 448,000. At Essex Engine Plant, 363,000 3.8- and 4.2-litre V-6 engines were produced during the first six months of 2000, a 5.2 percent increase versus 345,000. In total, Ford's Windsor operations produced 847,000 engines at midyear, compared to 793,000 in 1999.

Both facilities run round-the-clock, three-shift production and employ just over 4,000 people. Ford of Canada's other Windsor operations, including Windsor Aluminum Plant, Essex Aluminum Plant and Windsor Casting Plant, bring total employment to 6,800 men and women.

In April, Gaunt announced Ford of Canada's future investment plans in Windsor. At Windsor Engine Plant's annex facility, construction is under way for a 45,000 m(2) (500,000 ft(2)) expansion that will accommodate future machining and assembly of 800,000 sets (1.6 million) of cylinder heads.

Essex Engine Plant also is expanding by 22,500 m(2) (250,000 ft(2)) to allow for future production of 220,000 crankshafts and additional engine assembly in support of current production and future engine applications.

The plant expansions are expected to provide employment for 350 to 450 people over the next two years.