• Aug 14, 2008
Click above for high-res gallery of the Fiesta beginning production

Ford has finally begun production of the all-new 2009 Ford Fiesta in Cologne, Germany, today. After an investment of 455 million Euros (about $674 million) to restructure and modernize the plant, Ford is expecting its 4,000 employees will be able to roll out 148,000 Fiestas by the end of the year, which is an impressive 1,900 cars each day). In January 2009, the Valencia plant in Spain will also begin building the Fiesta. There are also production plants in China, Thailand, and Mexico that are tooling up for the newest small Ford in order to meet worldwide demand, which finally includes the U.S. where it will also be sold in both sedan and hatchback configurations around 2010. Based on the Verve concept, the new compact is exactly what the automaker needs in today's efficiency-conscious marketplace, and its stylish enough not to be considered a cheapskate or eco-geek while driving.


[Source: Ford]

PRESS RELEASE

THE ALL-NEW FORD FIESTA: PRODUCTION BEGINS OF A SMALL VEHICLE GOING GLOBAL

  • World premiere: first new generation Ford Fiesta rolls off Cologne production line
  • Developed in Europe for customers around the world
  • Fiesta to be produced and sold in Europe, the Americas and Asia, and will go on sale progressively across these regions between now and 2010
  • Over 5.3 million Fiestas produced in Cologne since 1979

COLOGNE, August 14, 2008 – Volume production of the new Ford Fiesta, the first of a generation of new global small Ford cars, started at the company's Cologne plant in Germany today.

This all-new model of the Ford Fiesta has been conceived and developed by the European arm of Ford's global product development team to meet the demands and expectations of customers around the world.

It is also the blueprint for future Ford global product development, bringing together Europe, the Americas and Asia. The new Fiesta will be tailored for each region and go on sale progressively between now and 2010, starting now with Europe.

The Cologne plant has the honour of being the first Ford assembly facility in the world to build the new car. In January 2009, the Valencia plant in Spain will also begin to manufacture the new Fiesta. The production facilities for new Fiesta outside of Europe will be Nanjing in China, Rayong in Thailand and Cuautitlàn in Mexico. They will begin to produce the car for their respective regions from late 2008 through early 2010.

In a video message to Ford of Europe employees at today's ceremony in Cologne, Ford Motor Company President and CEO, Alan Mulally, said: "Today we are celebrating the start of a new era for our fabulous Ford Motor Company. The first product of our Global Product Development System, the all-new Fiesta is an outstanding symbol for our One Ford vision of a single, global company designing and building cars for customers around the world. Be proud of what you have achieved and be proud of your contribution to a model that will get the world talking."

A total of 455 million Euros was invested in the restructuring and modernisation of the Cologne plant for the new Fiesta.

The all-new Fiesta is manufactured with sophisticated techniques more commonly found in the production of large cars: Ford production experts introduced these features at the highly efficient Cologne Assembly Plant, without interfering with existing Fiesta production. The all-new Fiesta production team went into the plant on weekends to install and verify new systems on the existing line. Some of the 50,000 hours of operator training was done off-line on static cars, while some training was dynamic (on-line). In one example of the training undertaken over a six week period, the production team built the same car on the line every day, then stripped it down and built it again.

In 2008, Ford plans to manufacture 148,000 new Fiestas in Cologne. When operating at full capacity, a total of more than 1,900 cars every day - new Fiestas together with the Ford Fusion - will be manufactured in Cologne over three shifts.

"The Ford Fiesta is very special to us in Ford of Europe and to our customers," said John Fleming, President and CEO, Ford of Europe. "Over the past 32 years it has consistently been at the top of the list of Europe's best-selling cars.

"Its dynamic, bold design and high manufacturing quality will attract a new generation of Fiesta owners and appeal to existing customers. I am confident that the all-new Fiesta will build on the success of its predecessor," he added.

Since the very first Fiesta was launched in 1976, over 12 million have been sold, with over 400,000 customers in 2007 proving the enduring popularity of the model.

The new Fiesta's dramatic exterior design and exciting interior styling are instantly recognisable, accentuated by the bold use of colours and the use of high quality materials throughout. The new vehicle extends the core Fiesta values of style, efficiency and driving quality.

External industry organisations regard the Fiesta plant in Cologne as the most efficient vehicle assembly plant in Europe. A total of 410,900 Fiestas and Fusions was manufactured in Cologne in 2007. Approximately 85 per cent of the vehicles produced in Cologne last year were exported to more than fifty countries. The Cologne assembly plant employs directly some 4,000 people.

Earlier this year, Ford began sourcing renewable electricity to cover the full electric power demand of its Fiesta manufacturing and engineering facilities in Cologne. Through this initiative, the company will reduce its CO2 emissions by 190.000 tonnes per year. This initiative is part of the company's overall commitment to further reduce the environmental footprint of its vehicles through their entire life cycle.

"We're very proud of the Cologne Assembly Plant and the vehicles produced here. Not only does the new Fiesta bring innovative design and engineering to the small car market, but it brings new manufacturing technologies as well", said Jim Tetreault, Vice-President Manufacturing, Ford of Europe.

"This new Fiesta is tough, strong, and safe due to the body construction technologies which allow us to build a lightweight, yet extremely strong body through the innovated use of high strength steel. It is also built with care, craftsmanship and precision by an efficient and dedicated workforce, which is second to none", he added.



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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 27 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      Lookin good! Finally, a concept that looked great and carried that over into production! I'm seriously considering this when I'm old enough to buy a car! Now it's Mexico's turn...
        • 6 Years Ago
        Seems like concepts are much closer to production than they use to be: the Camaro comes to mind. I remember 80's concepts that were more like spaceships with wheels. Usually they had descriptions like, "See that switch? It will instantly move all the blue-hairs into the right line. Of course this one is just a mock-up."
      • 6 Years Ago
      If they are building them in Mexico already, why do we have to wait so long. Is there that much difference in US spec models? Like GM holding back the Cruze?
        • 6 Years Ago
        Ford is busy dumbing down the design for our consumption, such as putting traditional grill on the car instead of the cool version in the photo. There was a pic of the US version on this blog a few days ago.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Because it's not being built in Mexico already?
      • 6 Years Ago

      The one you see there in the pics is the one you'll see on Ford dealer lots here in about 18-20 months. Well, not actually the one you see there...someone in EU will be driving that one!

      The NA Fiesta's 10% difference in parts will be those you don't see, touch or feel. Some things like the front and rear plate mounts will be different, etc.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Ford isn't dumbing it down for the U.S. market. It will have the same grille as this car.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Can anyone explain to me what's going on in photo #4?
        • 6 Years Ago
        Looks like some sort of vacuum suction toilet kind of like those used on the Space Shuttle. Cuts down on breaks taken I'd think.

        Got to have some way to pump out 1900 cars a day you know.

        Honestly though, I have no idea.
      Kumail
      • 6 Years Ago
      i really like this car, but i am still debating between this and the new fit.
      • 6 Years Ago
      My fiesta will soon be out of date! I'm too young to afford a new car :(
      Glenn Onehotmofo Mcg
      • 3 Years Ago
      how long does it take for a car thats been already manufactured and placed on a train at cologne to reach the uk
      • 6 Years Ago
      The first Ford product to be sold in the US that I'll actually WANT as a whole, especially if it at least drives like the first gen. US Focus or second gen. Euro Focus (or hell, even the current Ka or something).
        • 6 Years Ago
        I'll second that motion. This little car really excites me.
        • 6 Years Ago
        "stylish enough not to be considered a cheapskate or eco-geek while drivin"

        I think this line says it all! I like it too! If we as a group ripped apart any eco-car, we'd likely come up with something like it having to meet the above quote's criteria to be worthy...
      • 6 Years Ago
      As a collector of photographs of car production facilities, this is relevant to my interests.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Very interesting little car.

      Just don't screw it up when it lands on our shores, Ford. No 3-bar grills, no spongy suspension tuning for "US Roads", and don't decontent the life out of it.

      Deliver to us the same car the rest of the world gets, and see what happens. You might be surprised.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Apparently its just like Henry used to say- you can get it in any color you want, as long as it's red.
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