Ford adding 3rd Shift, 900 New Jobs to Meet Huge F150 Demand
The Ford F Series pickup family has been the bestselling vehicle in America for 31 years and the bestselling truck in the US market for 36 straight years with the F150 leading the way. More importantly for Ford, the entire F Series lineup continues to grow rapidly with 24 straight months of year over year gain and on the year, the F Series is already up 22% compared to the same period last year (January-July). Ford has sold 427,935 trucks this year so far – which is more than 50% better than the Chevrolet Silverado with 284,666 trucks sold this year. As an interesting note, Ford has already sold more F Series pickups in the first seven months of 2013 than GM sold Silverado’s throughout all of 2012. The Silverado is also way up for 2013 (27%) but there is still a very good chance that the F Series will lead the segment in sales for the 32nd straight year.
"Ford F-Series sales are the strongest since 2006, and we are increasing production to meet this demand." said Doug Scott, Ford Truck Group Marketing Manager. "This is an important indicator that our economy is growing again. We are proud that Ford Trucks are helping more and more of our customers get back to work."
It should be pointed out that sales of the Ford F150 are growing quickly even though the half ton pickup hasn’t seen a real facelift since 2009. It is widely expected that the next generation F150 will arrive within the next few years with an exterior design that should resemble the Ford Atlas Concept truck that debuted earlier this year in Detroit. Also, word on the street is that Ford will continue building the current generation F Series for a short period of time when the next generation is introduced. The introduction of the next generation alongside the popular current models could cause a huge boom in F150 sales and a big spike from the current sales figures could amount to record Ford truck sales. This bright future for the F Series presents a clear need for an increase in production as the company works to make sure that they have enough trucks to meet the growing demand.
While the Motor Company doesn’t break out F150 sales figures from the rest of the F Series lineup, we know that the half ton pickup is by far the bestselling of the F Series trucks. The F150 is built at Ford’s Kansas City Assembly Plant in Missouri and while that facility was building the F150 through two dedicated shifts but as the company faces production constraints – a third shift will be added to allow the company to build more F150s.
With this third shift of F150 builders comes 900 new jobs but that is just the first phase of a labor force increase that the company has planned that will add around 2,000 workers in total. Along with the F150, the Kansas City plant will soon begin production of the new Ford Transit van early in 2014.