Ford Cuts F-150 Production

Robert Farago
by Robert Farago
ford cuts f 150 production

The Kansas City Star reports that sluggish sales of Ford's former cash cow, the F-150 pickup truck, have led to a dramatic production slow-down. For two weeks in October, FoMoCo will idle half their operations at the pickup-producing Claycomo plant. Some 2100 (of 4400) hourly employees will be paid for doing naught. And thanks to "competitive operating agreements" negotiated with the United Auto Workers, returning employees will work 10-hour shifts for four weekdays with Fridays off. Currently, Ford dealers are holding 185,400 F-series trucks in their lots, which represents a 72-day inventory. (This after Ford's Norfolk F-150 plant was permanently shuttered last year.) Hot on the heels of GM's pickup truck pull-back (now a full stop, obviously), the F-150 slowdown is more proof that the entire pickup segment is undergoing a radical contraction. The trend will hit The Big 2.8's bottom lines but good.

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  • David C. Holzman David C. Holzman on Sep 25, 2007

    I'm sorry for the workers, but glad to hear FISO sales are sluggish.

  • Johnson Johnson on Sep 25, 2007
    RobertSD, I'm interested in knowing where you got your info from regarding the next-gen F150. From all the rumblings from Ford (and Ford insiders) the word is that the platform is NOT all-new. Besides, looking at the reality of things for the past few years, a new platform would be stretching it. The 2004 F150 had a completely new platform. Word is that the 2009 F150 gets an update of the P2 platform. Considering that Ford suffered some big losses between 2004 and now, I doubt they had the available funding to make ANOTHER all-new platform right after making the P2. The 2004 redesign was a huge investment for Ford. All the Ford insiders are saying the same thing: that the 2009 model is NOT a complete redesign, but rather a big facelift or overhaul of the current model. And there are a lot of rumours that the TwinForce engines have been delayed and won't come until 2010. Also, the interior will simply be an evolution of the current one, and not a radical change like the 2004 model was.
  • Jthorner Jthorner on Sep 26, 2007

    Honestly I wonder why the F150 would NEED a complete redesign. How many different ways are their to architect a pickup truck? Didn't the structural analysis guys do their work well in the last redesign? No matter what they do, pickup truck sales are going to continue to slide. The weak housing market is only a small part of the problem. The big problem is that people who don't need to commute in a truck everyday are not going to buy one in the era of $3/gallon fuel. This is also putting a lot of lightly used trucks on the used market as the posers switch to cars and get out of their 2-5 year old never-seen-mud trucks. Ford needs to keep the F-150 competitive, but they would be fools to do a 100% redesign as there is not enough they can do to fundamentally improve the product with a complete redo that can't be done with tweaks, new engines, new transmissions, etc. Look how little ROI GM is getting on the GMT900 version of it's pickups. They could have gotten as much sales help out of a thorough freshening as they have gotten from a 100% redo. What Ford they really needs is some good small trucks to serve that abandoned market.

  • Guyincognito Guyincognito on Sep 26, 2007

    RobertSD is right, the new F-150 is a major update, much more than a facelift. The whole front stub is completely new, suspension/steering/frame/etc. It will be class leading.