A bitingly cold wind is sweeping through the Motor City this day, but the bigger chill continues to be the rapidly increasing number of idle plants from Detroit's automakers. As part of a previously-announced bid to trim first-quarter output by nearly 38%, Ford now says it will shut down ten North American factories the week of January 5. Unlike Chrysler's planned one month downtime (where they eerily won't commit to start dates), the Blue Oval has confirmed plans to re-light the fires in eight of those plants beginning the week of January 12.

That means that during the week of January 5, Ford's only active North American plants will be in Dearborn (F-150), and Kansas City (F-150, Escape/Mercury Mariner). The week of January 12 will see all facilities up save Hermosillo, Mexico (Fusion, Milan, Lincoln MKZ) and Oakville, Ontario, where the Flex, Edge, and MKX are built.

Ford is angling to cut down its quarterly output to just 430,000 vehicles, and shutdowns at staggered intervals are expected to continue throughout early next year.

[Source: Automotive News - Sub. Req. | Photo: Bill Pugliano/Getty]