DETROIT — Ford Motor Co. next week will be forced to curtail output of its bestselling, most profitable vehicle because of an ongoing chip shortage.
The automaker told Automotive News on Thursday that its Dearborn Truck Plant in Michigan will drop to one shift from three the week of Feb. 8, while the truck side of a Kansas City Assembly Plant in Missouri will drop to two shifts from three. The two facilities produce the F-150 full-size pickup, which has long been Ford's main profit driver. The F-Series is the nation's bestselling pickup.
Both sites are expected to ramp back up to three shifts the following week, according to Ford spokeswoman Kelli Felker.
The timing is especially problematic for Ford as it ramps up production and deliveries of the redesigned F-150, which went on sale late last year. Although it does not break out F-150 sales specifically, U.S. deliveries of the F-Series pickup line fell 5.5 percent in January, Ford said Wednesday.
The chip shortage has been upending the industry for weeks, and its effects could drag into the third quarter, according to IHS Markit. Ford has already cut production at multiple facilities, and General Motors on Wednesday announced production cuts to four plants. Volkswagen Group, Subaru Corp., Toyota Motor Corp., Nissan Motor Co., Mazda Motor Corp. and Stellantis have also had to cut vehicle production.