WINDSOR, Ont. — Ford Motor Co. will cut one of three shifts at its Essex Engine Plant in Windsor, Ont., in October due to waning demand for 5.0-litre engines in the automaker’s F-series trucks.
The move was made “to better align with consumer demand,” a Ford Canada spokesperson told Automotive News Canada in an email.
Unifor Local 200 President John D'Agnolo said the elimination of the third motor line shift is the result of Ford offering a growing number of engine sizes to its customers.
F-series truck buyers can now choose between the 2.7-, 3.3-, 3.5- and 5.0-litre engines — as well as a diesel variant — and many are opting for the smaller-sized engines, D’Agnolo said.
Ford Canada said “there will be no [job] cuts” as a result of the changes.
“All employees affected by the shift reduction will have the opportunity to move to Windsor Engine Plant Annex to support 7.3-litre engine production,” Ford Canada spokesman Matthew Drennan-Scace wrote in an email.
That Annex building is part of the Windsor Engine Plant, which is just a 15-minute drive from the Essex Engine Plant.
Two new new full shifts begin at the Annex plant in November, D’Agnolo said.
D’Agnolo said he wasn’t surprised by the news and membersworkers were prepared.
“We’ve had down shifts every week since January, and we have two down weeks in the summer, and two more down weeks scheduled in September,” D’Agnolo said. “We could see that sales of the 5.0-litre were dropping.”