Ford introduced early Friday that it will likely be adjusting production targets for 2024 so as to crank out extra midsize trucks and SUVs. The corporate concurrently introduced that it could dial again F-150 Lightning manufacturing so as to higher match present (learn: softer) demand. The previous might be completed by including a 3rd shift (and 900 new jobs) to the corporate’s Michigan Meeting facility in Wayne, Mich.
That is unhealthy information for workers of Ford’s Rouge Electrical Car Heart, the place the Lightning is assembled, however not fairly as unhealthy because it appears at first blush. Roughly 1,400 jobs might be impacted, however Ford will shift roughly 700 workers from Rouge to Michigan Meeting (a transfer of about 15 miles) to assist bolster Bronco and Ranger output, whereas others might be reallocated to different regional services. At Michigan Meeting, the brand new shift will comprise 1,600 jobs; the remaining 900 might be new hires.
Ford says “just a few dozen” workers in varied supporting capabilities [Note; this originally referenced Ford suppliers and has since been corrected -BH] may very well be transferred as nicely.
Whereas Ford says it nonetheless expects 2024 gross sales of the F-150 Lightning to extend vs. 2023, it doesn’t foresee the identical explosive progress in electric vehicles that was seen in the course of the pandemic.
“We’re benefiting from our manufacturing flexibility to supply prospects decisions whereas balancing our progress and profitability. Prospects love the F-150 Lightning, America’s best-selling EV pickup,” Ford President and CEO Jim Farley mentioned within the announcement. “We see a shiny future for electrical autos for particular customers, particularly with our upcoming digitally superior EVs and entry to Tesla’s charging community starting this quarter.”
Ford sold a tick over 24,000 F-150 Lightnings last year; in the meantime, the Bronco and Ranger collectively mixed for greater than 135,000.