Automotive industry heats up again with new Ford contract talks

More evidence that the automobile industry is in recovery mode, as Ford Motor Corporation said it could add as many as 10,000 new jobs in the U.S. under a new four-year contract.

The United Auto Workers Union is currently in talks with the car company over wages, benefits and job creation, according to Bloomberg. Ford said as many as 4,000 of those new jobs could come from a production shift if it decides to move manufacturing of its Fusion midsize sedan stateside from Mexico.

Harley Shaiken, a labor professor at the University of California, told the news agency Ford appears poised to significantly add to its workforce.

"Jobs have been a central goal of the union in this round of negotiations," Shaiken added. "Ford, which is the most advanced in its recovery, is a natural for this kind of job creation."

Meanwhile, the Department of Energy is making an investment in the future of the car industry.

The federal agency recently gave Clemson University a $1 million grant for a new initiative to study sustainable vehicle systems, according to WCBD News. The money will be used to help students strengthen innovation in the car industry through the school's graduate automotive technology education division.