Ford Transit Production Stalled for One Week, F-150 Assembly Remains at Full Throttle [UPDATED]

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky
ford transit production stalled for one week f 150 assembly remains at full throttle

Ford Motor Company will be idling Transit production at its Kansas City Assembly Plant for seven days next week to account for waning sales (Update: Ford says its because of a recall. See the end of this post for details). Diminished deliveries aside, Ford’s Transit remains the preferred choice among van connoisseurs and was America’s best-selling large van in 2016. But not every year can be better than the last.

U.S. Transit sales dropped roughly 15 percent in August and stands at 80,292 units through the first eight months of the year —representing nearly a 22-percent loss against last year’s volume. Meanwhile, Canadian deliveries have been exceptional. But that’s not enough to compensate for the U.S. slump.

The Kansas City facility also produces Ford’s ever-popular F-150. But if you think the F-Series needs to be idled, you’re sorely mistaken. Ford’s pickup remains more desirable than ever and is on track to have its best sales year in over a decade.

“We continue to match production with demand, as we always do,” a Ford spokeswoman said in a statement.

However, there’s no reason to be concerned over the Transit’s long-term success. It persists as the best-selling vehicle in its class, both here and abroad. In fact, Ford recently invested $52 million into its Kocaeli plant in Turkey to bolster production and meet European demand for the model. The company expects its Turkey-based production volume to expand to around 330,000 vehicles per year.

Back in Missouri, unionized workers responsible for two Transit shifts will be placed on temporary layoff beginning Monday, September 25th. They’ll return to work October 2nd, according to UAW Local 249, which represents the plant’s approximately 7,000 employees.

Update: An updated version of the Automotive News story indicates that a recall of over 400,000 Transits to fix a faulty driveshaft flex coupling is the reason for the halt in Transit production. — Tim Healey

[Image: Ford Motor Co.] [Source: Automotive News]

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  • Kosmo Kosmo on Sep 20, 2017

    If Ford wants to re-up Transit sales -- by one, at least -- all they need to do is start offering AWD. I'll be down at the dealer the next day, since a Transit AWD would handily replace two of my current vehicles.

    • Rentonben Rentonben on Sep 20, 2017

      For about 12K you can add F-series 4x4 bits to your new Transit - search for "Quigley Transit 4x4" - Doesn't void the warranty but you have now order new (they won't convert used ones anymore.)

  • Dukeisduke Dukeisduke on Sep 20, 2017

    So Ford has a fix for the flex coupling problem? That's good to know.

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