Ford Super Duty Parts Issue Makes It 'Impossible to Build' Lost Units

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky
ford super duty parts issue makes it impossible to build lost units

Ford was supposed to start rolling out their 2017 Super Duty trucks much earlier than they eventually did. The holdup, attributed to a parts issue, is over, but Ford isn’t out of the woods yet.

Rodney Janes, UAW chair for the affected Louisville truck plant, told The Wall Street Journal it would be “impossible to build all the lost units” that were held up during this summer’s parts snafu.

Stalling the launch of any model in the extremely popular F-Series line will absolutely hurt Ford’s quarterly earnings. The company experienced a similar parts shortage for the F-150 in May of last year and suffered a loss in sales until production ramped up again.

Thanks to the delayed launch of the Super Duty, the automaker is now attempting to boost production to meet demand. “The launch has created situations that are way out of the norm for (the Kentucky truck plant),” Janes wrote in his union newsletter. He went on to speculate that the previous downtime created by the unspecified parts issue will mean many employees will be working excessive overtime to make up for it.

Ford spokesperson Kelli Felker confirmed to WSJ that production efforts are more or less back on track. “We continue ramping up production on the all-new Super Duty,” she said. “As with all vehicle launches, we are working closely with our suppliers to meet customer demand for the truck, which has been outstanding in its early weeks.”

Ford is expected to report results for its third quarter near the end of October, which will give us a better idea of how financially damaging this problem actually was.

[Image: Ford Motor Company]

Join the conversation
11 of 12 comments
  • Mikey Mikey on Oct 14, 2016

    So the local chairman is worried about" excessive over time" ...? He might want to touch base with the Rank and File. Trust me , when there're is a lot overtime available , my experience tells me, there ain't no shortage of volunteers to scoop it up, Back. In the 90' I put two kids through university . I never turned down a minute of O.T.

    • See 1 previous
    • Lou_BC Lou_BC on Oct 14, 2016

      @Scoutdude - Agreed. Union leadership wants members.

  • Mikey Mikey on Oct 14, 2016

    @ scout dude .....The assembly line has limits as to Jobs Per Hour (jJPH) . Turning up JPH to accommodate down time, has logistical issues. 20 K in O.T..per year , can make a huge difference to an Hourly Workers life @Lou ....O.T vs hiring more people , has been a political hot potato, since long before I punched the clock in 1972

    • See 2 previous
    • Scoutdude Scoutdude on Oct 14, 2016

      @ mikey, you are thinking about it from Ford's perspective, the quote was from a union rep and my comment was based on that. You are right that the line can only move so fast which of course is where the overtime comes into play, increasing production by increasing the number of hours the line is running per week.

  • Sector 5 Sector 5 on Oct 15, 2016

    These days many corps hire part-timers 2:1 full-tmers. That's where any potential OT goes - no OT. And a double-digit yield for Wall Street.

    • See 1 previous
    • Lou_BC Lou_BC on Oct 15, 2016

      @Adam Tonge - that is a very valid point. The cost of paying benefits can be up around 35-45% of the cost of standard full-time wages. Companies don't like part-timers if it means having to pay full time benefits. OT skirts the issue of benefits and expanding the workforce. Even having casual employees on the books tends to cost a large company money just from the administrative aspect. I've been told that can be around 2-4k per casual employee and since they are casual, they aren't a reliable workforce.

  • SC5door SC5door on Oct 15, 2016

    I smell "Super" weekends coming for them. We already run them in Chicago, double shifts for the rest of the year on Sundays.