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Ford Australia is set to hire sacked Holden engineers to develop cars for China - News.com.Au
Joshua Dowling, National Motoring Editor
November 26, 2014


FORD Australia plans to hire 150 sacked Holden engineers in the coming months to develop new cars for China.

Last Friday Holden sacked the first of 200 Melbourne-based engineers that it will let go before Christmas, ahead of a further 400 engineering job losses before Holden closes its factory in 2017.

The switch means that Ford will become by far the largest employer of automotive engineers in Australia, taking its vehicle development workforce from about 1050 to 1200, roughly 10 times more than Holden.

Ford’s engineering boss for the Asia-Pacific region, expat Australian Trevor Worthington, who visited Australia from China this week to launch the last ever Falcon, said he would be “happy” to help Holden’s sacked engineers.

When asked if Ford would hire engineers from arch enemy Holden Mr Worthington said: “Why not?”

He said Australian engineers were trained to “world class” standards, Ford was about to ramp up extra work for foreign vehicles, and there is a ready supply of ex-Holden workers.

“The growth in our Australian engineering workforce over the next six to eight months … will be about 150 engineers,” he said.

Ford was not clear about which areas of expertise it would focus on but Mr Worthington said “we will get the right people for the right job”.

“Whether it’s chassis engineers, powertrain engineers, calibration engineers, instrument engineers … the work is cyclical,” said Mr Worthington, who expects the engineering workforce to remain stable at about 1200 employees “for the foreseeable future”.

Holden will have fewer than 150 engineers remaining once its factory closes in 2017, while Toyota is expected to have fewer than half that again...
 

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Wait, I thought Ford Australia was going out of business in a few years? So in other words, I guess whats happening is that the Australian factories are closing, but they still have a design team, like the people who made the everest, that will stay indefinitely. Right?
 

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Wait, I thought Ford Australia was going out of business in a few years? So in other words, I guess whats happening is that the Australian factories are closing, but they still have a design team, like the people who made the everest, that will stay indefinitely. Right?
yup
afaik Australia will continue to be the main engineering center for the entire Asian ("ASEAN"?) area
including India
 

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yup
afaik Australia will continue to be the main engineering center for the entire Asian ("ASEAN"?) area
including India
The ASEAN Ford lineup, whether manufactured/assembled in Thailand or imported from outside ASEAN are mostly global models (Fiesta, EcoSport, Focus, Escape/Kuga, Ranger etc.)
Aside from the Ranger and upcoming Everest, i'm not sure what other Australian-developed Ford models there will be for markets outside China.

The new Figo for India by the way was developed by Ford Brazil alongside the new Ka.

It looks like Ford Australia will be busy developing in-between-segment Chinese models that don't belong into common global classifications/segments.

Another thing they could do is suspension tuning for some markets like India where their cars have higher ground clearance/ride heights.
 

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With the really ugly Baojun 730 as the 6th most popular light vehicle in China for October, it's no wonder Ford is targeting flooding China with nice looking 7 passenger vehicles.



Next comes the S-MAX, then the new Galaxy then China will need a longer wheelbase Escape.
 

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mentioned on GMI (where I swiped the article)

"India or Indonesia...both are RHD"
Does this have something to do with Asutralia being a RHD country?

A large chunk of Asia-Pacific is RHD.

LHD RHD


I think vehicle development has nothing to do with steering wheel location of the intended markets.
The Chinese Escort (LHD-only) was developed by Ford Australia (RHD country)
 
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