By Drew Johnson
Tuesday, Jan 18th, 2011 @ 4:09 pm
 
Ford announced on Tuesday that it will be investing $400 million in its Kansas City, Missouri plant to support the production of a new vehicle. The plant currently produces the Ford Escape, but production of the next-generation CUV will be shifting to the company's Kentucky plant.

The announcement will preserve the plant's 3,750 full-time employees. Ford said its decision to invest in the plant was a direct result of tax breaks from the state of Missouri, but the automaker failed to put a monetary value on the state's support.

"This investment and promise of a new vehicle to be built in Kansas City reinforces Ford's commitment to U.S. manufacturing and American jobs," said Mark Fields, Ford president of The Americas. "Investing in our plants, products and people is critical to Ford's ability to compete with the best in the business."

Ford didn't reveal what vehicle will take the Escape's spot at the Missouri plant, but an announcement on that will come later. The Ford F-150 - which is currently produced at the plant - will remain in production at the Kansas City facility.