Ford Slashes Two-Thirds Of Its Workforce At F-150 Lightning Plant

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Ford’s shake-up of its electric vehicle plans didn’t end after it delayed its battery production plans and cut investments in its Model e division last year. Reports out of Dearborn, Michigan, now suggest that Ford is drastically slashing the workforce at the plant that builds the F-150 Lightning electric truck from next week onwards.

Only one-third of the 2,100 workers will continue to remain on-site at the Rouge Electric Vehicle Center from April 1, Jessica Enoch, the director of manufacturing, quality and supply-chain communications at Ford told the Detroit Free Press yesterday. Some of this workforce will now be transferred to build gas-powered SUVs and trucks.

The report added that about 700 workers will head to the Michigan Assembly Plant in Wayne, where the Bronco and the Ranger are manufactured. The Dearborn automaker expects another 700 workers to take the $50,000 retirement package that the United Auto Workers and Ford negotiated after last year’s labor union talks.

As the Rouge Electric Vehicle Center loses two of its three crews, the Michigan Assembly Plant now gains a third crew. This rejig comes after Ford slashed about 700 jobs at the EV plant in October 2023 citing issues with supply-chain and quality checks. Ford confirmed to InsideEVs at the time that the job cuts were unrelated to the UAW strikes.

This shuffling of workers won’t result in layoffs, Enoch said. Ford has already halved the F-150 Lightning production target for 2024, reducing it from 3,200 units weekly to 1,600 units—the reshuffle is possibly part of that plan. Ford did not immediately respond to InsideEVs request for comment at the time of publication.

The news comes even though Ford EV sales grew substantially in February 2024 year over year. Mustang Mach-E sales were up 63% last month, whereas F-150 Lightning sales were up 94%. However, it seems like dealer inventory for the electric truck remains high.

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