COLOGNE, GERMANY – Volume production of the new Ford Fiesta, the first of a generation of new global small Ford cars, has started at the company's Cologne plant in Germany. This all-new model of the Ford Fiesta has been conceived and developed by the European arm of Ford's global product development team to meet the demands and expectations of customers around the world.

It is also the blueprint for future Ford global product development, bringing together Europe, the Americas, and Asia. The new Fiesta will be tailored for each region and go on sale progressively between now and 2010, starting with Europe.

The Cologne plant is the first Ford assembly facility in the world to build the new car. In January 2009, the Valencia plant in Spain will also begin to manufacture the new Fiesta. The production facilities for new Fiesta outside of Europe will be Nanjing in China, Rayong in Thailand, and Cuautitlàn in Mexico. They will begin to produce the car for their respective regions from late 2008 through early 2010.

In 2008, Ford plans to manufacture 148,000 new Fiestas in Cologne. When operating at full capacity, a total of more than 1,900 cars every day — new Fiestas together with the Ford Fusion — will be manufactured in Cologne over three shifts.

"The Ford Fiesta is very special to us in Ford of Europe and to our customers," said John Fleming, president and CEO, Ford of Europe. "Over the past 32 years it has consistently been at the top of the list of Europe's best-selling cars."

Earlier this year, Ford began sourcing renewable electricity to cover the full electric power demand of its Fiesta manufacturing and engineering facilities in Cologne. This initiative is part of the company's overall commitment to further reduce the environmental footprint of its vehicles through their entire life cycle. 

Originally posted on Automotive Fleet