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Despite Pandemic, Ford Retains Its Position As Top Vehicle Manufacturer

The Ford Motor Co., despite the pandemic, has retained its top spot among all vehicle manufacturers. Indeed, Ford also increased the number of vehicles it sold for export.
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Despite the disruptions caused by the ongoing pandemic that caused, at times, Ford’s assembly lines to shutter for extended periods of time, Ford is still the leading manufacturer of vehicles in the U.S. During 2020, Ford built 1.7 million cars, trucks, and SUVs, 188,000 more vehicles than any other automaker. Ford has retained its top position even as the automaker has faced major issues.

U.S. Vehicle Content Increasing

More than 82 percent of Ford vehicles were assembled in the U.S. up from 75 percent in 2019, more than any other automaker. Ford also led U.S. light vehicle production and sales in 2018 and 2019, according to IHS Markit light vehicle production and sales data. In terms of production, vehicle sales of U.S. made cars, trucks, and SUVs and employment of hourly workers, Ford is the top carmaker. Ford’s production also included the model year changeover to its best-selling F-150 pickup. The F-150 has some special models such as the Police Special analyzed by my colleague Jimmy Dinsmore the pickup's many capabilities.

Also, Ford plans to invest $2 billion, add 3,000 hourly jobs and retain hundreds more in the U.S. This is all part of Ford’s commitment to invest $6 billion in its U.S. plants and create and retain 8,500 hourly jobs in the U.S. as part of its current contract with the United Auto Workers.

Ford Mustang Mach-E Is A Key For The Future

Ford is also the country’s largest employer of UAW workers with more than 57,000 union members. The automaker also supports 1 million American jobs and contributed more than $100 billion to the U.S. GDB, according to a 2020 study by the Boston Consulting Group.

“The numbers confirm Ford’s leadership and commitment to American manufacturing and the U.S. economy. Not only is the auto industry the backbone of the U.S. economy, Ford is vital to it,” said Kumar Galhotra, president, the Americas and International Markets Group. “We are a proud supporter of American manufacturing – and we do back it up year after year, investing in our workforce and the country.”

The Mustang Mach-E has been compared to Tesla models. Senior reporter John Goreham asks the question which vehicle requires more maintenance.

Meanwhile, the Mach-E continues to sell at a brisk pace as my story on February sales shows.

Interesting Ford Facts

Other interesting Ford facts include:

  • Ford exported more than 280,000 U.S.-assembled vehicles to markets outside the U.S., more than any other automaker
  • One in ever six vehicles Ford builds is exported
  • Ford is the largest employer of UAW-represented autoworkers
  • More than 82 percent of the vehicles that Ford sells in the U.S. are assembled here, more than any other full-line automaker

Since the beginning of the current UAW Ford labor agreement, Ford has announced it will invest $2 billion in U.S. manufacturing, add approximately 3,000 U.S. hourly jobs and retain hundreds more. Approximately 2,100 of those already are in place in Wayne, Mich., where the company has invested $750 million to build the all-new Ford Bronco and Ranger, along with a modification center where those vehicles will be personalized for customers. Ford remains the largest employer of U.S. hourly autoworkers in the industry.

This investment is part of Ford’s commitment to invest $6 billion in its U.S. plants and create and retain 8,500 jobs in America as part of its current four-year contract with the UAW.

In September, Ford revealed the production of the first all-new 2021 F-150s would be at the historic Rouge Complex in Dearborn, Mich. where the company is investing $700 million to build the all-new truck. At that time, the company also began construction of the new Rouge Electric Vehicle Center, adjacent to the Dearborn Truck Plant, where the upcoming all-electric F-150 will be built, adding another 500 jobs.

Electric F-150 Will Be Built At Historic Site

The Rouge Electric Vehicle Center that will assemble the electric F-150 is also being designed to bring Ford’s vision of American manufacturing and sustainability into the future. It will use smart and connected technologies that can communicate directly with the vehicles, which will then allow those vehicles to be more sustainable once they’re on the road.

A $150 million investment earmarked for Van Dyke Transmission Plant will retain about 225 jobs and help transform the plant to build e-motors and e-transaxles for future vehicles, including the all-electric F-150.

Kansas City Assembly Plant received more than $400 million investment and an additional 150 jobs to build the all-new Ford F-150 and the all-new zero-emissions E-Transit.

Ford Trucks Are Keys To The Economy

Ford and its iconic F-Series trucks are an important driver of the U.S. economy. A 2020 Boston Consulting Group (BCG) study found F-Series – assembled 100 percent in the U.S. and America’s best-selling truck since 1977 – is among the most valuable consumer goods in America and a key employment driver. Among other specific findings:

  • Ford is the leading U.S. auto manufacturer – responsible for one in five vehicles assembled domestically
  • Ford supports 1 million American jobs – that’s nearly a dozen jobs for every direct Ford employee
  • Up to 14 American jobs are supported by each direct Ford F-Series employee – this equates to about 500,000 total jobs attributable to Ford’s F-Series alone
  • Ford contributes approximately $100 billion to the U.S. GDP and the best-selling F-Series contributes nearly $50 billion
  • Of the more than 2 million full-sized pickup trucks assembled in the U.S. in 2019, Ford assembled nearly half – twice as many as any other automaker
  • The F-Series franchise alone generates more revenue than major companies such as McDonalds US, Nike, Coca-Cola, Visa and Netflix
  • It is among the most valuable consumer good in America – bigger than all major league sports

/>Marc Stern has been an automotive writer since 1971 when an otherwise normal news editor said, "You're our new car editor," and dumped about 27 pounds of auto stuff on my desk. I was in heaven as I have been a gearhead from my early days. As a teen, I spent the usual number of misspent hours hanging out at gas stations Shell and Texaco (a big thing in my youth) and working on cars. From there on, it was a straight line to my first column for the paper, "You Auto Know," an enterprise that I handled faithfully for 32 years. Not too many people know that I also handled computer documentation for a good part of my living while I was writing YAN. My best writing, though, was always in cars. My work has appeared in venues including Popular Mechanics, Mechanix Illustrated, AutoWeek, SuperStock, Trailer Life, Old Cars Weekly, Special Interest Autos, and others. You can follow me on: Twitter or Facebook.


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