Ford has done such a good job convincing pickup truck buyers that the various V-6 engines offered in the F-150 are up to the task, that the automaker is now scaling back production of the 5.0-liter V-8 at its Essex engine factory in Windsor, Ontario, just across the Canadian border from Detroit. Essex will reduce its current three production shifts for the V-8 down to just two.
A Ford Canada spokesman told Automotive News Canada that the decision was made “to better align [production] with consumer demand,” and said that no workers will lose their jobs as a result. John D'Agnolo, the president of Local 200 of the Unifor labor union that represents workers at the Essex plant, confirmed the change, attributing it to buyers choosing smaller engines.
The Windsor Essex plant currently operates 24 hours a day but the third shift will be eliminated, with all of its workers given the opportunity to migrate to the nearby Windsor Engine Plant Annex that assembles the 7.3-liter engines used in Ford's Super Duty pickups. That factory will be adding two new production shifts starting in November.
D'Agnolo told Automotive News that the news wasn't a surprise, because “We could see that sales of the 5.0-liter were dropping.” The Essex plant had shifts suspended in January, with more down weeks scheduled for this summer and fall.