DETROIT -- Ford Motor Co. started regular manufacturing of its F-150 Lightning electric pickup truck on Tuesday, more than tripling planned annual production of the vehicle that now symbolizes the 119-year-old company's drive to retool for a new century.
Ford workers, top executives and a group of F-150 Lightning customers joined a party at Ford's Rouge Electric Vehicle Center near Detroit, marking the sharp acceleration of the assembly system. Ford has been building Lightnings for several weeks, parking them in lots around its Dearborn headquarters.
The automaker had planned to build just 40,000 Lightning trucks annually, but surging demand for EVs prompted Ford to increase planned production twice since last August. It has geared up a new part of its Rouge manufacturing complex to build 150,000 of the heavily modified version of its best-selling F-150 pickup truck annually.