Ford Slashes Electric Truck Production, Because Nobody Wants Them

AP Photo/Alan Diaz, File

Full disclosure: I'm a Ford guy. I've driven Ford cars and trucks since the late '70s. These days, most American cars and trucks are pretty good; if you drove cars made from about 1975 to 1985, you can remember what pieces of crap the Big Three were turning out in those days, but I kept my brand loyalty through the dark times, and still do today. American vehicles today are all pretty comparable, quality-wise, and with a Ford, I already know the ergonomics, which knobs and buttons do which things, and so forth. My wife and I have ignored the electric-vehicle (EV) nonsense, in large part because we live in rural Alaska, where such a vehicle would be on the wrong side of useless for much of the year — like this morning when we woke up to -7 degrees Fahrenheit.

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Since I'm pretty sure that I'm not the only rural truck-drivin' sort that feels that way, it wasn't a big surprise to see Ford slashing production of their all-electric F-150 Lightning, as their sales, well, suck.

Ford is cutting production of the F-150 Lightning electric pickup after weaker-than-expected electric vehicle sales growth.

While EV sales are growing in the U.S., the pace is falling well short of the industry’s ambitious timetable and many consumers are turning to hybrid vehicles instead.

Ford said that about 1,400 workers will be impacted by the move to lower F-150 Lightning production, with the Rouge Electric Vehicle Center transitioning to one shift, effective April 1. Approximately 700 employees will transfer to Ford's Michigan assembly plant while other workers will be placed in roles at the Rouge Complex or other facilities in Southeast Michigan. Some employees are expected to take advantage of the Special Retirement Incentive Program agreed to in the 2023 Ford-UAW contract. 

This isn't the first time Ford has had to adjust their thinking on electric trucks.


See Related: Ford Motor Company Pulls Back on Its Commitment to Electric Vehicles


Here's the interesting bit: Ford's F-150 is probably the top-selling U.S.-made vehicle in history. For 46 years, it has been America's best-selling truck; for 41 of those years, it has been the best-selling American vehicle, period. The F-series has a lineage going back to 1948 — my Old Man had a 1950 Ford F-1, and it lasted him as a hard-working farm truck for about ten years, as I recall. Dad had to replace rings and bearings in that truck's old 239 C.I.D. flathead V-8 every couple of years, but those trucks were made to be worked on, and one could replace rings and bearings in an afternoon without removing the engine block from the truck. I was just a little tad when Dad still had that truck, but I can remember sitting in the dust of the barnyard, watching him work on it, and handing him tools as he needed them.

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The F-series is Ford's most successful property, which is why it's kind of baffling as to why they would go all-in on an EV version, which is pretty useless for most people who want a pickup for the kinds of things people use pickups for — especially if they need something reliable in winter weather.


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Fortunately for Ford, sales of the new Ranger series and the new Bronco seem to be doing pretty well. Ford seems to have decided to be a truck company, and given the success of the F-series, one would suppose that there is some logic to this, although all four of our kids have owned and driven Ford's excellent Fusion sedans and one point or another and have had very good luck with them. And I still miss my 1966 Galaxie 500 coupe, with its big, thunderous 390GT engine. That thing was a rocket — as long as you were going in a straight line, as it cornered like a bathtub.

This looks like it's probably the best decision for Ford. I'll stick with Ford trucks, personally. At some point this year, I'll be in the market for a pickup myself, and given our lifestyle and the uses to which we'll be putting a pickup, I'll be looking for a Super Duty Diesel — one built before any kill switches or any other such government-mandated nonsense. And I'll be looking to keep it, hopefully, until I have no more use for it.

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