Ford to build new all-electric SUV and autonomous hybrid at Michigan plant

Ford has announced plans at CES to build a range of new electric and hybrid-electric vehicles, revealing plans for seven of its total 13 planned electric cars set for arrival in the next five years. These include a brand-new, fully electric small SUV, and a new fully autonomous car that will be the basis of its new electric ride-hailing fleet, with a target debut date of 2021.

The new Ford vehicles will be built at the carmaker’s Flat Rock, Michigan plant, as part of a planned expansion of that facility with a $700 million investment. This will come at the cost of a $1.6 billion planned Mexico plant project, which Ford is also cancelling as announced today.

Ford’s new vehicle plans also include a hybrid F-150, targeting 2020 for availability as is the new all-electric truck, and a hybrid Mustang, also destined for the Flat Rock facility and aiming for 2020. Other vehicles include a plug-in Transit Custom, and hybrid cars designed for police use, which are going to be built in Chicago.

Ford’s planned vehicles will use Ford’s next-generation EV tech, which enters testing this year. It’s also going to debut a range of new services that are designed to help ease the transition to EVs for drivers and take away headaches related to things like charging.

The most interesting part of this announcement might be the specific plans for Ford’s new autonomous vehicle fleet. Ford says it’s targeting “high-volume” production for this car, which makes sense if it indeed wants to deploy the cars en masse to service dense urban environments where car ownership is on the decline.