Ford aims to capitalize on the growth of electric cars for headwinds

However, executives believe that the manufacturing challenges that have hampered Ford’s growth since 2020 may soon subside and that its renewed product portfolio is exactly what the market wants.

“We haven’t really had any open field running, so to speak, for probably two years,” Executive Chair Bill Ford told reporters at an event marking the start of Lightning production this week. “But the good news is that our order banks are full and the demand for our products is very high. I feel very confident that we can deliver what we said we would.”

The automaker plans to increase Lightning production to a driving speed of 150,000 vehicles annually by next year. It expects to become the No. 2 EV manufacturer, behind only Tesla, for the next two years with a volume of 600,000 EVs globally, and then challenge for the top spot later this decade.

Ford, already cutting into Tesla’s market share with the Mustang Mach-E, actually has the regular full-size electric pickup market to itself until the Chevrolet Silverado EV arrives in about a year, a window of opportunity that could pay dividends in a lucrative segment. The two electric pickups already for sale, the GMC Hummer EV and Riviant R1T, are more niche luxury cars.

Managers say Lightning’s price, capabilities and new features are helping Ford bring in customers who would not otherwise consider the brand. Pickup starts at $ 41,769 including shipping.

“It’s going to vault them into a leadership role just from a volume standpoint,” Jessica Caldwell, CEO of Insights at Edmunds, said in an interview. “It’s not only going to be a Tesla-powered market. Ford is really setting up for the future, but it’s going to be hard to get through this period of inventory problems and then satisfy all the deferred demand.”

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