Volume production officially kicked-off yesterday at Ford Motor Company's new joint venture engine production facility, Changan Ford Mazda Engine Company (CFME), in Nanjing, China.
The first BZ series engines rolled off the production line, representing the latest move by Ford to enhance its competitiveness and expand into the world's fastest growing major automotive market. The BZ series adopts a modern aluminium cylinder head and block, intake VCT (variable cam timing), plastic intake manifold, TSCV (tumble swirl control valve), and multi-point electronic fuel injection.
CFME is one of the largest and most modern engine manufacturing plants in China, with a 350,000-unit annual production capacity that will supply production operations for Ford and Mazda vehicles in China.
The manufacturing facility consists of three major plants for casting, machining, and assembly. Five key components of the motor are being manufactured on-site, including the cylinder block, cylinder head, crankshaft, camshaft, and connecting rod.
The $312.5 million facility is a joint venture between Ford, Mazda and China's Changan Automotive Group, with Changan holding a 50 percent share and Ford Motor Company and Mazda Motor Company holding 25 percent each.
Executives representing the three CFME partners signed a joint venture agreement in April 2005, and then five months later broke ground for the plant, which is located in Nanjing's Jiang Ning Economic and Technological Development Zone.
CFME expects to produce additional Ford and Mazda engine series as demand requires.