Ford said it's working to mitigate USA production losses and that its three-month supply of F-Series trucks in dealers' inventories should offset shortages in the near term, but if the shutdown lasts several weeks, which reportedly could be the case, specific versions of the F-150 would become scarce.
But because of the parts interruption, Ford has suspended production of the F-150 and F-Series Super Duty truck at its Louisville, Kentucky plant.
BMW, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, General Motors and Mercedes-Benz are also reporting production disruptions due to the Meridian plant fire. However, Ford says dealers' inventories of the trucks are large enough to prevent a near-term shortage. "It's a full team effort and we're confident that any impacts will be short term". It halted production in Dearborn, Michigan, and Kansas City, Missouri.
Ford is forced to temporarily stop making the F-150, one of America's best-selling vehicles, due to a problem in its supply chain.
Authorities said there were explosions at the plant and two workers were hurt.
Those unique metal components are provided by Meridian Magnesium Products in Eaton Rapids, Michigan, but on May 2nd, Meridian's facility caught fire.
"We have a good supply of materials for Expedition and Navigator, so we see that production continuing for quite some time", Hinrichs said, adding that Ford continues to build the Explorer in Chicago.
Fortunately for Ford, General Motors doesn't yet have new pickups in the United States markets, and Fiat Chrysler is just launching its F-150 competitor.
Both local Unifor presidents said it's a temporary change as they continue to evaluate the fire's impact on local production.
The precarious situation "demonstrates the riskier side of Ford's strategy to put all its eggs in the trucks and SUVs basket", said Ivan Drury, a senior analyst with the auto website Edmunds.
The assurance likely came as a relief to investors, given that F-Series trucks account for most of Ford's profits. The shutdowns will adversely impact Ford's second-quarter earnings, but the company expects to compensate for this later.