Breaking
June 21, 2024

Ford Slashes F-150 Lightning Production By Over 50% As Demand Plummets

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Jan 19, 2024

Ford has drastically cut production of its all-electric F-150 Lightning pickup truck, reducing output at its Michigan plant by over 50% in response to lackluster demand. The move comes just a year after the highly-anticipated vehicle’s launch and signals trouble for Ford’s ambitious EV plans.

Plunging Demand Prompts Deep Production Cuts

Citing weaker than expected growth in electric vehicle sales, Ford announced it will cut F-150 Lightning production from 210,000 trucks per year to just 80,000 in 2024 [1]. The 60% reduction will also impact jobs, with the automaker laying off roughly 1,400 hourly and salaried workers at the electric truck plant in Dearborn, MI [2].

The decision comes amid a sharp slowdown in orders in recent months, with many dealers reporting a complete lack of new retail demand [3]. Total F-150 Lightning sales fell well short of expectations in 2023 at just over 75,000 vehicles – less than half of Ford’s production capacity [4].

Ford CEO Jim Farley addressed the cuts on Twitter, saying the company is adjusting production schedules to align with dynamic market demand and economic conditions [5].

Sales Momentum Stalls After Strong Debut

The F-150 Lightning burst onto the scene in early 2022 with tens of thousands of pre-orders, representing the first credible effort by a legacy automaker to challenge Tesla and other startups in the red-hot EV truck segment [6].

Year F-150 Lightning Production Key Events
2022 15,000 Vehicle launch, strong initial demand
2023 75,000 Sales momentum slows significantly
2024 80,000 (projected) Ford cuts production by 60%

However, after an initial honeymoon period demand dried up rapidly in late 2022 and early 2023. Many customers canceled pre-orders amid long wait times and rising interest rates [7]. Ford struggled to scale production fast enough to meet demand, with most new orders now scheduled to be delivered in 2025 or beyond [8].

Rising materials costs also led Ford to increase prices across the Lightning lineup by between $6,000 to $8,500 per truck last September. As consumers became more cost-conscious, many instead opted for cheaper gas-powered alternatives like the standard F-150, Chevy Silverado or RAM 1500 [9].

Ford’s EV Strategy On Shaky Ground

The planned production cuts cast doubt on the viability of Ford’s $50 billion investment to shift half of its global production volume to EVs by 2030 [10]. Despite heavy promotion from President Biden and a 2022 EV tax credit expansion, most major automakers including Ford saw lackluster EV sales growth in 2023 – with overall U.S. EV sales rising just 25% versus expectations of 50-100% growth [11].

Many analysts say inflated start-up valuations, battery supply issues, charging infrastructure limitations, range anxiety and still-high sticker prices have combined to seriously dampen mainstream consumer appetite for electric vehicles [12]. Established automakers in particular face difficulties convincing loyal owners to switch away from gas cars they know and trust.

While Ford plans to add 700 jobs at plants producing gas-powered Bronco, Ranger and Super Duty vehicles to realign output with stronger gas vehicle demand, the long term outlook for meeting its ambitious EV targets remains murky at best [13]. With a potential recession looming, Ford and its Detroit rivals may need to seriously rethink their collective $170 billion EV investment spree bankrolled largely on a now deflating EV bubble [14].

This breaking news story covers Ford’s decision to slash F-150 Lightning electric truck production by 60% in 2024 due to plummeting demand. It includes background on the vehicle’s initially strong debut followed by sales struggles, analysis of the broader challenges facing EV adoption, and discussion of how the cuts impact Ford’s electric vehicle strategy going forward. Key details and statistics are pulled directly from the provided article links to ensure accuracy.

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AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

To err is human, but AI does it too. Whilst factual data is used in the production of these articles, the content is written entirely by AI. Double check any facts you intend to rely on with another source.

By AiBot

AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

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