Ford lays off staff engaged on F-150 Lightning EV

Ford Motor Co. mentioned that it could cut back the variety of employees making its F-150 Lightning truck as demand for electrical automobiles continues to weaken.

About 1,400 staff will likely be impacted because the Rouge Electrical Car Heart transitions to 1 shift starting April 1, the Dearborn, Michigan-based automaker mentioned Friday in a statement.

The corporate mentioned it expects continued development in world EV gross sales in 2024, although it is going to be lower than anticipated. Final month Bloomberg reported that Ford would cut manufacturing objectives for the F-150 EV in half this 12 months.

In an indication that conventional gasoline-powered automobile demand stays sturdy, Ford additionally mentioned that it was hiring almost 900 new staff and including 700 staff from its Rouge Complicated for a 3rd shift at its Michigan Meeting plant. This may permit the automaker to extend manufacturing of Bronco and Bronco Raptor sport-utility automobiles, and Ranger and Ranger Raptor pickup vehicles.

Ford shares fell 0.8% to $10.90 as of 9:38 a.m. in New York on Friday.

Ford mentioned it’s balancing manufacturing to fulfill buyer demand and Chief Govt Officer Jim Farley mentioned the corporate nonetheless sees “a bright future” for EVs for “specific customers.”

American automobile patrons have cooled on EVs, balking on the excessive costs and a spotty charging infrastructure. Ford has responded by repeatedly cutting production of the F-150 Lightning, its signature EV, and the Mustang Mach-E it builds in Mexico. The automaker additionally downsized by almost half a battery plant it’s constructing in Michigan and is delaying plans for a battery plant in Kentucky because it pushes again $12 billion in deliberate spending on electrical automobiles.

“It’s pretty clear there’s been some slowdown in EV adoption,” David Lefkowitz, head of shopper equities for UBS International Wealth Administration, mentioned on Bloomberg Tv Friday. “We’re getting to the part of the market where it make take a little more effort to penetrate the market.”

UBS has forecast simply 11% gross sales development within the US EV market this 12 months, down from 47% final 12 months and 60% development in 2022.

Earlier this week, UBS analyst Joseph Spak lower his ranking on Ford to carry from purchase over issues that its EV technique will likely be gradual to repay.

“Though we like CEO Farley’s vision and direction for the future of Ford, we believe it could take a number of years for the benefits of those plans to be realized,” Spak wrote in a notice to traders.

— With help from John Lauerman

    Subscribe to the Eye on AI publication to remain abreast of how AI is shaping the way forward for enterprise. Sign up totally free.