Ford will invest £190 million in UK on cleaner diesels

Ford will invest  £190 million (€240 million) in its factory in Dagenham in southern England, creating 318 jobs as it expands production of cleaner diesel engines.

The investment is the second phase of a new engine program at the Dagenham plant, following Ford’s previous commitment of  £287 million. The company said it will begin producing 350,000 cleaner 2.0-liter diesel engines annually for commercial vehicles late next year and another 150,000 units for passenger cars starting in 2017.

This new range of low CO2-emitting 2.0-liter diesels for cars and commercial vehicles has been designed and developed at Dagenham and at the Ford Dunton Technical Centre in Essex, England.

The investment is part of £1.5 billion being spent over five years to produce engines and other technology that result in lower carbon emissions from its vehicles, Ford said.

The UK government will provide £8.9 million of the money being spent on the project in Dagenham.

The expansion signals a slight reversal for Ford in the UK. The automaker said in 2012 it was shutting a stamping plant in Dagenham and a factory that makes chassis cabs for the Transit van in Southampton, England. The company said at the time that closing this facility — as well as one in Belgium — would cut 6,200 jobs, or about 13 percent of its workforce in Europe.

Ford also produces petrol engines at its plant in Bridgend, Wales. Total production from Dagenham and Bridgend exceeded 1.5 million engines in 2013, the automaker said.