( Worldcarfans ) - The Ford Motor Company of South Africa is investing over R1.5 billion (USD 214 million) to produce the next generation of compact pickup truck and Puma diesel engine, Ford announced today. The year 2011 will see a new pickup truck being produced there as well.
The majority of the estimated 110,000 annual production units will be exported to countries in Africa and Europe. FMCSA has two plants in South Africa, one engine plant on the pristine coastal city of Port Elizabeth and the other an assembly one in the capital city Pretoria, with a staff compliment of roughly 4,500 which is expected to rise by 500 by 2011 when production is at full speed.
The Port Elizabeth area is home to some of the big guns in motor manufacturing, including General Motors which also manufactures there. An important part of the investment is local content, which currently sits at 35 percent, but will rise to over 60 percent at a later stage. This will be an annual investment of approximately R2.9 billion (USD 414 million). The economic empowerment of the country's previously apartheid-disenfranchised black population will also receive a great boost when components are supplied for production.