Ford Cuts Workforce for F-150 Lightning Amid Sluggish Demand
Ford is aligning the production of its F-150 Lightning electric truck with current customer demand, while also maintaining the capacity to scale up production of its gasoline-powered and hybrid F-150 trucks as needed, said the company on Friday.
In 2023, Ford said it was America’s second-best-selling electric vehicle brand (far behind leader Tesla), with the F-150 Lightning leading as the nation’s top-selling electric truck. The model saw a 55% sales increase in 2023, with further growth anticipated in 2024.
“We are taking advantage of our manufacturing flexibility to offer customers choices while balancing our growth and profitability. Customers love the F-150 Lightning, America’s best-selling EV pickup. We see a bright future for electric vehicles for specific consumers, especially with our upcoming digitally advanced EVs and access to Tesla’s charging network beginning this quarter,” said Ford President and CEO Jim Farley.
The transition to a single shift at the Rouge Electric Vehicle Center, effective April 1, will impact around 1,400 employees. Approximately 700 of these employees will be transferred to the Michigan Assembly Plant, while others will be reassigned within the Rouge Complex or other facilities in Southeast Michigan. Additionally, employees have the option to participate in the Special Retirement Incentive Program, as outlined in the 2023 Ford-UAW contract.
The restructuring may also affect a few dozen employees at component plants supporting F-150 Lightning production, depending on the uptake of the Special Retirement Incentive Program. Ford has committed to providing placements for any impacted employees within Southeast Michigan.
Back in December, Ford cut F-150 Lightning production by 50%, and now we’re hearing 1,400 workers are only going down to a single shift. That’s not good news.