This is good news to Niigerians, as Ford Automobile has announced that Ford Ranger, the midsize pickup is going to be built in Ikeja, Lagos, Nigeria.
Ford announced Monday it will assemble the Ranger pickup in Nigeria starting in the fourth quarter of 2015 as part of its expansion in the Middle East and Africa where the small truck is popular.
The Ranger is built and sold around the world with the notable exception of North America. The last U.S.-built Ranger rolled off the line in St. Paul, Minn., in December 2011. Ford redirects truck buyers to the larger Ford F-150 but a core of customers continue to ask for the return of the smaller pickup.
Elsewhere, the truck is a strong product; global sales increased 40% in 2014. Ford builds the pickup in South Africa, Thailand and Argentina.
Nigeria will be the first African country outside of South Africa to produce Ford vehicles. The Ranger will be assembled in Ikeja, in Lagos State, about 470 miles from the capital city of Abuja, creating about 180 jobs. An investment figure is not being released.
The Nigerian operation will be a “semi-knockdown” plant that will receive parts and components partially assembled from South Africa and complete the assembly. Ford will send employees to Nigeria to train them in the Ford manufacturing system.
The kit assembly plant has capacity for 5,000 trucks a year, all for the Nigerian market.
Ford is partnering with Coscharis Motors Limited, a Ford dealer group. Cosmas Maduka, president of Coscharis Motors, said “this partnership will boost Nigeria’s much needed march towards industrialization and create an important step in the development of the automotive industry.”
For Ford, “assembling Ford Ranger trucks in Africa’s largest economy is an important milestone in our Middle East and Africa growth plan,” said Jim Benintende, president of Ford Middle …Read More
Source:: PM Newspaper