Chip shortage forces Ford to cut production of F-150, Bronco and other important vehicles

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Bronco SUVs in production at Ford’s Michigan Assembly plant, June 14, 2021.
Michael Wayland | CNBC

DETROIT – Ford Motor is cutting production next week of several key products due to an ongoing global shortage of semiconductor chips.

The automaker on Friday confirmed production downtime next week for the Ford Bronco and Explorer SUVs; the Ford F-150 and Ranger pickups; the Ford Mustang Mach-E electric crossover; and the Lincoln Aviator SUV at plants in Michigan, Illinois, Missouri and Mexico due to the parts shortage.

The automaker also is cutting some productions of the F-150 and Ford Transit cargo vans at plants in Michigan and Missouri.

The cuts signal the chip shortage that devastated the auto industry last year continues to linger. They come a day after Ford significantly missed Wall Street’s earnings expectations due to lower-than-expected production caused by the supply chain issues, causing shares to tumble 9.7% on Friday.

“The global semiconductor shortage continues to affect Ford’s North American plants – along with automakers and other industries around the world,” Ford said in an emailed statement. “Behind the scenes, we have teams working on how to maximize production, with a continued commitment to building every high-demand vehicle for our customers with the quality they expect.”

The fact that Ford is cutting some of its most profitable and in-demand models such as the Bronco, Mach-E and F-150 shows automakers continue to battle with the problem despite many in the industry expecting a gradual improvement in the supply of chips in 2022.

Ford sold 1.9 million vehicles in the U.S. in 2021, down by 6.8% as it managed through a global shortage of semiconductor chips. The parts problem forced Ford and other automakers to sporadically shutter plants and depleted vehicle inventories.

After increasing by roughly 140% in 2021, shares of Ford are down by 13.5% this year.

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