• Oct 25, 2009
Rico Auto Industries in India makes transmission parts for Ford's Flex and Edge, along with its upscale Lincoln MKT and MKX twins. Unfortunately for the Blue Oval, Automotive News is reporting that Rico's operations are in flux because of persistent troubles between labor and management. A few weeks ago, some of the supplier's workers went on strike after members were suspended and fired by management. On October 18, the striking workers marched to the factory and got involved in an altercation with "unidentified men" supposedly "acting at the behest of Rico Auto's management." During the brawl, a 26-year-old worker was killed.

In the meantime, Ford reportedly hasn't got the parts it needs to build the crossovers it makes at its Oakville, Ontario plant and will be forced to idle the key facility next week. Ford is watching the situation in India closely – if production isn't restored soon, the lack of parts could impact other plants in addition to Ontario and its 3,000 workers.

[Source: Automotive News, sub. req'd. | Image: Simon Hayter/Getty]


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  • 59 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      Mexico called, and they want their transmission parts plant back.
      • 5 Years Ago
      So.. to be clear... Ford is waiting for thugs to force the workers back into the plants so they can get the parts they need to finish building some Lincolns.
      Well, that's nice...
        • 5 Years Ago
        So you think Ford has no juice with this company even though they are the customer and probably a very sizable customer?
        Or you think they have no moral implication in the fact that the company they buy from is using violence to quell labor unrest?
      • 5 Years Ago
      And nothing of value will be lost:

      http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/review-2009-lincoln-mkt-awd-ecoboost/

      It got SLAMMED!
        • 5 Years Ago
        The least you could do, if you insist on posting links from theliesaboutcars.com, is make sure the f***ing link works, dumbass.
        • 5 Years Ago
        oooh, comment removed, touchy are we?

        Well that was some review. They talk about the thrust from the EcoBoost engine as though it's a bad thing, and responsive braking as though it's a bad thing. They talk abou the smell (that smell comes from the chemical that softens plastic, you know high quality soft plastics vs. low quality hard plastics). Exterior design is on-par compared to some of the other misses (like the very popular MDX). And Interior design uses bridge of weir leather (the same as Aston martin and RR) and real wood (compared to plastic and contact paper used by other brands).

        That review is glaringly biased. Tell me what is so biased about Edmunds review...
        http://www.edmunds.com/lincoln/mkt/2010/review.html?mktcat=style+review+page&kw=2010+lincoln+mkt+101136147+style+review+page&mktid=ik344168
        • 5 Years Ago
        Your link is broken there, Matt. Even TTAC doesn't want to be associated with a troll like you.


        You fail.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Wow Brian, you're slipping up there, you can't even post untrue crap, and that's your specialty.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Wow, most cars do have "mouse fur" covering the trunk area and the back of the seats that fold down. I'm sorry I haven't smelled yet so i'll get back to you on that. Lincoln is one of the only automakers that uses real wood (as in not plastic or contact paper, like almost every other automaker uses). Styling is objective. And it seats six because the model they got was equipped to seat six. Pretty much every crossover/SUV has the option to remove one of the middle seats in place of a console (or in this case a refridgerator/freezer).
        • 5 Years Ago
        Damn your right Jimbo. If you read that so called review you would think Matt and Brian co-wrote it together!
        • 5 Years Ago
        And they've gained a loyal fan base of idiot trolls, and yet, no normal everyday car buyers.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Yeah...RF pegged that MKFlex EXACTLY right. Hideous exterior and an extremely sub-par interior. Electronic gimmicks (and an outrageous price) do not make a vehicle a luxury vehicle. It's the small details...and frankly...Lincoln does not know how to sweat the small stuff.

        There are HUGE oversights in all of the new, near-luxury Lincolns.
        • 5 Years Ago
        You don't need to have an attitude with me because your links are just as unreliable as the websites they're for.
        • 5 Years Ago
        They took down the review five minutes after I posted that link, for some reason.

        But RF SLAMMED the MKT. The sides and back of the third row are covered in mouse fur cloth, it smells like a new Focus, the wood is cheap ass, the styling is fugly as hell, and it can only seat six.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Jimbo So true. TTAC is about as biased as Fox News or MSNBC. They truly are pathetic on a level only trolls would appreciate. It's about as good of a reference for the everyday as Wikipedia is for a grad students' thesis.
        • 5 Years Ago
        What link? I didn't post any link.

        Although I did read the review........and they don't call it 'The TRUTH about cars' for nothing...
      • 5 Years Ago
      So if stuff like this keeps happening, and companies start worrying about outsourcing to India, does this mean I'll actually have someone who can speak English next time I call a customer service line?
        • 5 Years Ago
        Yeah cause DICTATORSHIP IS TEH AWEZOME!! LOLz GULAGS!
        • 5 Years Ago
        Wow, you people are racist. One factory on strike can be extrapolated to a whole country? Please, at least pretend to think before commenting.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Hey they speak english in India, that's why they put the call center there! :P
        • 5 Years Ago
        yeh poor but still "democratic".
        LOL no wonder China has 3times more GDP than India now
        • 5 Years Ago
        yeh DICTATORSHIP

        eupatrid monopoly-capitalist group. Oh yeh learned how to work for and buy from u and we Flying Without Wings. LOL
        • 5 Years Ago
        What the hell are you going on about?
        • 5 Years Ago
        "Sandeep - Wow, you people are racist. One factory on strike can be extrapolated to a whole country?"

        There goes the throwing around of the dirty R word again. Please do not confuse simple ignorance, or bigotry with racism. These are not the same thing.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Being of Indian descent myself and having visited the country, constant strikes are unfortunately an all-too-common occurrence. One little imagined problem and suddenly EVERYONE is on strike for a month. If you thought the UAW was bad, just look at many of the workers in India. It's ridiculous. They're can't work without striking at least once every few months.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @paul34: Usually (from what I've seen with my time there), companies can replace labor relatively rapidly and divert the strike. Not sure what's going on with this particular supplier. Even when the locales we work in riot, it dies down in a week or two, and that's an entire town rioting, not a simple factory strike.

        @daleam9: One of the Merriam-Webster definitions of racism: "racial prejudice or discrimination". That would be the definition I was going for. Bigotry would also apply, while I don't think sheer ignorance would be enough to make statements like that.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Oh PUHleeze... Like there have never been worker strikes in the western countries
        • 5 Years Ago
        Sandeep - Where was there any reference to race in any comment? Just because someone makes a reference as a blanket statement to an entire country does not make it racist. What if this had been about the UK? Check your own comment for the definition you provided. It clearly says RACE.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Shame on ford for having any jobs outside the USA ! you get what you deserve Ford or lol you get what you pay for !

      Bring those jobs back to the usa ford
        • 5 Years Ago
        yeah, heaven forbid a global company use global resources.
        • 5 Years Ago
        just so you know... GM and Chrylser both are supplied transmission brackets (the components in jeopardy) by this exact supplier. stay tuned for impacts to them as well.
        it's all over the news here in Michigan.

        So keep your idiotic anti-Ford comments to yourself.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Yes, because American workers would never strike...
        • 5 Years Ago
        Did you know the Flex, Edge and MKX are made in Canada? How about the Crown Vic? The Camaro is Canadian, too, as is the Impala. Oh, and the 300C, Charger and Challenger. And the Caravan.

        Did you know the Fusion is Mexican? So are some of GM's trucks and SUVs.

        Meanwhile, the Camry is built in Kentucky and qualifies as a domestic car, far more than many other supposed domestics. For shame on Toyota for building a car outside of Japan.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @ psarhjinian

        Mexico and Canada are our neighbors. Big whoop?
      • 5 Years Ago
      Meh...no loss really. Nobody is buying the silly Flex and only a complete moron would waste their money on the Lincoln rebadge.

      And the Edge and MKEdge have even worse sales.
        • 5 Years Ago
        The Flex is one of the best vehicles Ford has out right one. Hate to use a corporate slogan, but have you driven one? I'm a performance-car only type guy too, and even I think it's a really great effort by Ford.
        • 5 Years Ago
        There is nothing unique about ANYTHING Ford sells.....especially the Edge. It looks like every other lite-SUV out there.
        • 5 Years Ago
        And Ford also had 20-something Vice Presidents that were nothing but useless cash leaches to the company's bottom line. Now that Ford is running much leaner as a company, their increase in sales will help them return to profitability. (and need i bring up the chart again, sales are down because 1. There was a global recession which froze up loans, which people often need to buy cars, and 2. The Edge has a very unique design, and that design is now over 3 years old and people want a new unique design (which will come sometime in the next year, and possibly a hybrid addition (although that was being talked about years ago, and there is a good chance that their plans have changed since then
        • 5 Years Ago
        So you could be normal and consider the many V8s that are slower, and less fuel efficent than the EcoBoost V6 (the 300/Charger SRT8, the G8, the Impala SS, the Audi A6 4.2/A8, Infiniti M45x, Lexus GS 460, or LS 460) or you could focus on the fact that Hyundai makes a smaller car that has a V8 that gets more power, yet is slower and gets the same mileage withough AWD. So there are 2 engines that get 17/25+ MPG, the Tau V8, and the EcoBoost V8. The EcoBoost V8 is put on a bigger car, with AWD, and it pulls that bigger AWD car to 60 faster than the Tau V8 that is put on a smaller car without AWD. So you could say that EcoBoost gets V8 like power (and one of the fastest V8 0-60 times on a full size car) and gets V6 economy, or you could focus on how the EcoBoost gets the same mileage as a V8 that is on a smaller, slower, non-AWD car.
        • 5 Years Ago
        That's because it doesn't need AWD. AWD is (for the most part) used as a crutch by people who don't know how to drive...or by automakers who, rather than build a proper car, make the car half-assed by putting a high-strung gas guzzling V6 and a FWD-BASED AWD system.

        But what does that have to do with the Edge/MKEdge poor sales?

        • 5 Years Ago
        Except for the fact that the Edge and MKX were the best selling Crossovers in america in their segments for two years, so...
        • 5 Years Ago
        Well Matt, most people consider your comments "off topic". Like how you like to pretend that you're psychic [psycho?(idiot troll?)] and predict Ford's doom and how the EcoBoost engines are high strung and will fall apart in a few years (even though the rigirous testing done on them has proved that they are very reliable) and then bring up how older Ford engines had spark plugs pop out and melt. Yes... very on topic.
        • 5 Years Ago
        It has to do with the fact that you make idiotic troll-like claims like saying that the Edge doesn't look like anything special, and there were lots of other lite-SUV looking cars out there, yet the Edge was number one for a while.
        Similarly, you like to complain about how the 3.5L EcoBoost gets V8 mileage and etc. yet you completely ignore the fact that nobody makes a car like the SHO. If you sit there and look at the basic facts, you can't really argue with them. Nobody makes a car that is 1. Full Sized 2. Has 350+ HP and 350+ Ft Lbs of torque 3. Goes 0-60 in 5.0/5.2 seconds and 4. Gets 17/25 MPG with AWD, because AWD adds weight, lowers speed, and blah blah blah. The only car that is similar is the Genesis, which is slower, smaller, and doesn't have AWD. If the Genesis did have AWD, it would likely knock off .1 second here or there, and it would knock down the mileage. You can complain and say that AWD is unimportant, but the fact of the matter is that the SHO has AWD standard, and the only other car (the Genesis) that is similarly fast with the same mileage, doesn't even have AWD as an option for comparison's sake.
        • 5 Years Ago
        "Except for the fact that the Edge and MKX were the best selling Crossovers in america in their segments for two years, so..."

        And in the mid-90's, Ford had 5 of the top ten best selling vehicles. How does that help them now?

        The Edge was down overall for 2008, and so far this year....tanking very badly.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Yeah.......no.
        • 5 Years Ago
        How is the Edge/MKEdge unique looking? Maybe they are through your blue blinders...but they look like the Lexus RX "lite" suvs.

        And, again, Ecoboost is a lie. A V6 that gets V8 mileage is not ECO.
        • 5 Years Ago
        That is on-topic because:

        1. It was in an Ecoboost thread
        2. The mod boat anchors were tested as well......and I was using that FACT (I know you don't like facts) to prove my point that the so-called "rigirous testing" Ford has done means SQUAT.
        3. I never said the mod boat anchors melted.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Ugg.......here we go again.

        This was a thread on the idling of a Ford plant........and you want to go off topic and talk about the gas guzzling Ecoboost engines.

        We've had this argument before and there is no way we are going to change eachother's mind. I'm right and you keep thinking your right.

        Done. Over. No More.
        • 5 Years Ago
        And yet the Edge sold like hotcakes, and all those "other lite SUVs" (do you have any examples???) didn't.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Looks like a pretty big company judging by their customer base.

      http://www.ricoauto.com/customers.html
      • 5 Years Ago
      Maybe they should send Matt there.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I LOL'd when I read that.
      • 5 Years Ago
      These corporations skip out of the country so that they can save a bonus or two for the ceos, I hope this happens more so that everybody has the right to make a good wage, this is what the labour movement really needs China would be the best, then we would have a level playing field.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The situation is going to be fine.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The Flex is a very nice CUV.
      • 5 Years Ago
      holy crap.... labor vs management and someone got killed.

      I believe in fighting and screaming for what you believe in
      and for the right thing...I'd put myself in danger for it.... but a labor dispute?

      I bet we'll get more details soon about why the workers went on strike
      and how somebody got killed.... was it a riot.... demonstration?

      a few workers half a world away get fired and a week later
      Ford has to idle an entire PLANT because if it! WOW.
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