Ford’s Lightning production woes may have hit another snag. The automaker on Friday revealed plans to temporarily reduce one of three shifts at its Rouge EV plant in Michigan, where the F-150 Lightning is manufactured.
The move will happen Monday, affecting about 700 jobs, Ford said. The US automaker claimed that the cuts were unrelated to the UAW strike.
The move comes two days after UAW workers went on strike at its largest factory in Kentucky in a strike amid contract negotiations.
According to a new report from ReutersFord said multiple constraints, including supply chain issues, were behind the cuts. She did not mention how long the production cut would continue, but indicated that it would alternate between the shifts being reduced.
Ford claimed that it is “working to process and deliver the impounded vehicles for quality inspection after production resumes in August.”
the Wall Street Journal Reported earlier on Friday A UAW official said Ford was considering cutting a shift at its Lightning plant because of the backorder.
“It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that our Lightning sales have declined,” the union leader wrote in a memo earlier this week.
Ford’s production woes are worsening at its Lightning EV plant
Ford’s job cuts come after F-150 Lightning sales fell 46% in the third quarter compared to last year. The automaker sold 3,503 electric trucks compared to 6,464 in the same period last year and 4,466 in the second quarter.
Ford said Electric In September, “F-150 Lightning production began to ramp up after a six-week shutdown to expand its Rouge Electric Vehicle Center with limited deliveries during July and August.”
The automaker added a third shift last December as it worked toward its goal of building 150,000 electric trucks.
“The pace of near-term adoption of electric vehicles will be a little slower than expected,” Ford CEO Jim Farley said in July, pushing back the goal of producing 600,000 electric vehicles until next year.
Earlier this week, Ford introduced a new incentive that offers up to $7,500 in savings for the purchase or lease of a Lightning model (it can also be combined with the EV tax credit for a discount of up to $15,000).
Ford has also added a new “Flash” model to the 2024 lineup that combines features from the XLT and Lariat models into one model. The F-150 Lightning Flash features up to 320 miles of range, a technology-focused interior, and a heat pump, with a starting price of $70,000.
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