Ford doubles Lightning production as electric truck battle with GM heats up
DETROIT, Jan 4 (Reuters) – Ford Motor Co (F.N) said on Tuesday that it will nearly double annual production capacity for its red-hot F-150 Lightning electric pickup to 150,000 vehicles as the model has already attracted nearly 200,000 reservations ahead of its arrival this spring at U.S. dealers.
Ford’s announcement comes a day ahead of rival General Motors Co’s (GM.N) public introduction of the Chevrolet Silverado electric pickup, which is slated to go on sale in early 2023. read more
The Silverado E will be unveiled by GM Chief Executive Mary Barra on Wednesday in a remote session connected with the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
Ford Chief Executive Jim Farley in early December told CNBC host Jim Cramer that Ford had to stop taking reservations for the 2022 Lightning “because we had so many.” read more
Ford originally had production capacity for 70,000-80,000 Lightnings. Farley said in the December interview that Ford aimed to double that over the next two years at the company’s Rouge factory near its Dearborn, Michigan headquarters.
Ford also is planning to triple annual production of its popular Mustang Mach-E electric crossover to more than 200,000 by 2023, to meet better-than-anticipated demand.
The automaker said it will have the annual capacity to build 600,000 electric vehicles globally within 24 months, when it aims to become “the clear No. 2 electric vehicle maker in North America” behind Tesla (TSLA.O), which last year sold more than 900,000 EVs read more .
Future Ford EVs are expected to be built in the United States, Canada, Mexico, China and Germany, according to industry researcher AutoForecast Solutions.
The 2022 F-150 Lightning will have a starting price of $39,974, and is being aimed at both retail and commercial customers. Ford said more than 75 percent of Lightning reservation holders are new to the brand.