DETROIT – For decades, the F-150 has maintained the best sales of any vehicle in North America, and is also Ford’s best seller, which account for over eighty percent of the automaker’s profits in the second quarter of 2016.
This year the F series sales numbers are up over five percent, but it also saw a 2.6 percent decline in deliveries this past September – this, according to Automotive News.
This recent drop is part of a larger decline in demand in the retail automotive industry. This, according to Ford’s Kelli Felker, who specifically stated that sales are down this quarter compared to last year.
Subsequently Ford has decided to suspend vehicle production in a few of their assembly plants in Kansas, Missouri, Kentucky, and Mexico for a week to deal with the demand issue. The models they plan to halt are the F-150 and Compact Crossovers, the models with the highest volume in the US.
The Dearborn Plant in Michigan will stay open however, Ford said.
These production suspensions will affect roughly 13000 hourly workers including managers. The majority, over 9000 works, are based in the US, and the rest is in Mexico.
Ford has indicated that workers who have been with the company more than a year will be compensated with almost eighty percent of their current wages for the suspension period, which is good news for an already endangered manufacturing work force.
In addition to the Ford pay, qualifying workers will also receive state unemployment benefits. But Ford did not provide any details about partial pay on the Mexican workers.
The Escape and Lincoln MKC are the two crossovers Ford plans to pause production on. The company has indicated these suspensions will last two to three weeks. Sales for the Escape fell over 10 percent in September due largely to Japanese competition.
The plants in Mexico Ford plans to suspend include the Hermosillo plant, and the Cuautitlan plant. The first produces Ford Fusion and the Lincoln MKZ, while the second produces Ford Fiesta. Sales have slipped significantly for all three models this year.
Investors were warned by Ford that their profits will drop this year by as much as .6 percent.
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