Steel Markets

Ford Cuts Production in July-August on Chip, Parts Shortages

Written by Michael Cowden

Ford plans to idle or reduce production at nearly all its North American assembly plants in July – and in some instances into early August – because of a shortage of chips and other parts.

“While we continue to manufacture new vehicles, we’re prioritizing completing our customers’ vehicles that were assembled without certain parts due to the industry-wide semiconductor shortage,” a company spokesperson told SMU on Wednesday, June 30.

FordThe Dearborn, Mich.-based car, truck and SUV maker said earlier this year that it would build some vehicles without chip-containing electronic modules, hold them on site, and then ship them once enough chips were available.

And the company had already cut production at several North American plants into late June and early July.

Below is where things stand now:

  • Chicago Assembly Plant will be down the weeks of July 5, 12, 19 and 26 and will run two shifts the week of Aug. 2
  • Dearborn Truck Plant will run two crews the weeks of July 12, 19 and 26
  • Flat Rock (Mich.) Assembly Plant will be down the weeks of July 12 and 19
  • Hermosillo (Mexico) Assembly Plant will run one of two shifts the weeks of July 12 and 19
  • Kansas City (Mo.) Assembly Plant F-150 line will be down the weeks of July 12 and 19, while the KCAP Transit line will be down the week of July 19
  • Kentucky Truck Plant will be down the week of July 12 and run two shifts the weeks of July 19, 26 and Aug. 2
  • Louisville Assembly Plant will run on a reduced schedule the week of July 19
  • Michigan Assembly Plant will be down the weeks of July 5 and 26 due to an unrelated part shortage
  • Oakville (Ontario) Assembly Complex will produce Nautilus only the weeks of July 19, 26 and Aug. 2

That tally includes all of Ford’s North American assembly plants besides its Ohio Assembly Plant and its Cautitlan Assembly Plant in Mexico.

The Ford spokesperson declined to specify what part shortage was impacting production at the Michigan Assembly Plant.

Steel prices have continued to rise despite the chip shortage, which has been hobbling automotive output since at least late last year.

Steel Market Update’s base price for galvanized product – which is widely used in automotive applications – stands at $1,970 per ton ($98.50 per cwt), up nearly 82% from $1,085 per ton at the beginning of the year and more than triple $655 per ton a year ago.

Lead times, meanwhile, are eight to 16 weeks – or well into the fourth quarter at some mills.

By Michael Cowden,

Michael Cowden

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