Ford plant produces first model

The first production Transit Connect light commercial vehicle came off the assembly line this week at the new Ford manufacturing plant in Craiova, Romania.

John Fleming, chairman and chief executive of Ford Europe, said that the second vehicle to be produced in Craiova after the Transit Connect will be a small car. The new small car, which will be different from Fiesta or Ka models, is scheduled to go into production in the near future.

As announced earlier this year, Craiova also will build a small displacement, advanced EcoBoost petrol engine. The exact timing for the start of production for both products will be announced at a later date.

At full capacity, Craiova will be able to produce up to 300,000 vehicles and 300,000 engines annually and provide employment for approximately 7,000 people.

The first Transit Connect off the line was donated to Craiova Municipal Hospital for use in its work with the local community. The first commercial shipment of newly assembled Transit Connects from Craiova is destined for Ford dealers in Romania.

Mid-term, Ford expects to export the majority of Craiova Transit Connect production, primarily to central and eastern Europe.

Ford continues to encourage its existing suppliers to bring business to Romania, either by using Romanian suppliers or establishing facilities of their own in the country to support Ford’s Craiova operations.