The Minister of Trade, Industry, and Competition, Mr Ebrahim Patel has welcomed the announcement made by Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa (FMCSA) regarding the expansion of its production to include plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) in the Ford Ranger programme.
This move aligns with the global efforts to decarbonize energy-intensive industries and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Patel stated: “We commend Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa for their commitment to embracing cleaner energy solutions. This initiative not only supports our national efforts to combat climate change but also positions South Africa as a key player in the global shift towards sustainable transportation.”
Globally, the automotive sector has undergone significant changes, necessitating the adoption of cleaner technologies. FMCSA’s decision to invest an additional R5.2 billion (US$272 million) in the Silverton Assembly Plant for PHEV production demonstrates their dedication to building world-class vehicles while contributing to a greener future.
The implementation of relevant policies and legislation supporting the production and uptake of new electric vehicles (NEVs) is vital in encouraging the transition from traditional internal combustion engine vehicles (ICE) to clean and energy-efficient alternatives.
FMCSA’s commitment to producing PHEVs aligns with the Ford+ global strategy, marking a significant milestone in the company’s journey towards sustainable mobility.
Production of the Ford Ranger plug-in hybrid electric vehicles is expected to commence in the third quarter of 2024, and the vehicles manufactured at the Silverton Assembly Plant will be exported to over 100 markets globally, including the United Kingdom (UK) and European Union (EU) member states.
“We look forward to collaborating closely with Ford to establish the PHEV facility at the Silverton plant in Gauteng. This partnership will contribute to the future sustainability of the automotive sector and create a cleaner, greener environment for all,” said Patel.
The sector is expected to receive a further boost once the Electric Vehicle White Paper is finalised by South Africa, which is expected during the current financial year.