Ford’s Van Dyke Plant Shifts Production to Electric Vehicle Parts, Changes Name

Ford Motor Co.’s Van Dyke Transmission Plant in Sterling Heights has changed its name to the Van Dyke Electric Powertrain Center, along with updating its production line to produce electric vehicle components.
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Robots in a car factory
Robotic arms in an automobile factory. // Courtesy of iStock

Ford Motor Co.’s Van Dyke Transmission Plant in Sterling Heights has changed its name to the Van Dyke Electric Powertrain Center, along with updating its production line to produce electric vehicle components.

The plant will produce electric motors and transaxles to meet the needs of Ford’s growing electric vehicle lineup, including the 2022 F-150 Lightning. This comes after Ford invested $150 million in the plant in November of 2020, retaining 225 jobs.

“The advanced technology we are using at the Van Dyke Electric Powertrain Center is taking us to the next level for Ford’s electric future,” says John Savona, vice president of manufacturing and labor affairs at Ford. “The electric transformation we are making now is going to allow us to scale quickly as customer interest grows for our new electric vehicles.”

Electric motors are expected to be in full production by summer, with one coming off the line every 75 seconds. These motors deliver quiet, efficient transportation that can be used in a fully electric vehicle or a hybrid. The electric transmission is expected to launch in early 2022.

Located just north of 18 Mile Road on Van Dyke Avenue, the 2 million-square-foot facility has been operating since 1968, producing front suspension parts at first before switching to making transmissions in 1993 for vehicles like the Taurus and Windstar.

In 2012, the plant switched from exclusively manufacturing parts for internal combustion engines to a mix of that and hybrid front-wheel-drive transmissions for vehicles like the Transit, Edge, Escape, and EcoSport. In 2013, it became North America’s first zero waste-to-landfill transmission plant.

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