Ford is shutting down F-150 truck production at its Dearborn, Mich., factory, after having already idled its Kansas City plant that also makes the popular and highly profitable model. The automaker also has stopped building F-Series Super Duty pickups at a factory in Kentucky, though it continues to make them in Ohio. The shutdowns will adversely impact Ford's second-quarter earnings, but the company expects to compensate for this later.
"We believe the impact of this will be isolated to the second quarter," Joe Hinrichs, Ford's president of global operations, said on a conference call with reporters. "We do not anticipate losing any sales as a result of this and we'll be able, over time, to make up the production."
The parts shortage has also spread to General Motors Co. and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV factories, in addition to leading Daimler to pause production of key Mercedes-Benz sport utility vehicles. The interruptions follow an explosion and fire this month at a Meridian Magnesium Products plant in Eaton Rapids, Mich., which makes die-cast parts and is owned by China's Wanfeng Auto Holding Group.
F-Series pickups generate most of Ford's profit, with Morgan Stanley recently assigning a higher valuation to the franchise than the entire company. The trucks are the top-selling vehicle line in America and haul in about $40bn in annual revenue, exceeding the annual sales of companies such as Facebook Inc. and Nike Inc.
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