Earlier today, Ford Motor Co. announced it invested $375 million on a research and engineering facility in Ottawa to enhance its connected vehicle technology. It is one of five such centers with other locations in the Ontario cities of Waterloo and Oakville as well as North Carolina and Florida.
The move brought on 300 engineers in Canada and 100 engineers in the U.S. who focus on infotainment, in-vehicle modems, gateway modules, handset integration, driver assist features and autonomous vehicles.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau joined Ford and local government leaders for the announcement, which included a $76.67 million investment from the Ontario government and a matching investment from the federal Canadian government.
“This is about positioning Canada as a global centre for automotive innovation, creating better opportunities for Canadians, and keeping Canada’s automotive manufacturing sector competitive,” Trudeau said in a statement.
Meanwhile on the southern side of the border, President Trump signed an executive order this week rolling back provisions of the Clean Power Plan, a move which was aimed at reviving the coal industry. Earlier this month, Trump was in Michigan pushing automakers to expand facilities and build additional manufacturing plants.
In many ways, it is striking to see the difference between the current U.S. and Canadian administrations. One appears to be looking to revive the past, and the other is looking toward investing in the future.
- Sharon Silke Carty