After a fire that rocked Meridian Magnesium Products of America’s ability to effectively supply automakers, Ford and a handful of other automakers found themselves in trouble. The Blue Oval had arguably the most to lose with its cash cow F-Series trucks seeing production idled for the foreseeable future. Fortunately, there is a ray of hope shining through the fog.
Numerous sources are claiming assembly could resume on the F-150 by this Friday. Previous estimates had Ford’s truck production being stalled for weeks. However plants in Dearborn, Michigan, and Kansas City, Missouri, are believed to resume operations by May 18th. Unfortunately, Ford’s Super Duty pickups at its Louisville truck plant won’t be getting the same treatment. Production for that facility is to remain stalled indefinitely.
It’s still good news for the F-150, however. According to Automotive News, Ford worked out a deal with Meridian to supply enough engine cradles, front-end carriers, instrument panel crossbar beams, liftgate structures and radiator supports for most-popular model. But the Super Duty will have to wait until the supply line can be fully restored.
Ford executives had been worried that company’s quarterly earnings could be affected by the idled truck assembly, but recently reaffirmed its full-year earnings estimate. Presumably, the Super Duty trucks can tap into the company’s pickup surplus and make up for lost time once production resumes.
Other automakers are suffering from supply shortages after the fire at Meridian’s Eaton Rapids factory too. Mercedes-Benz stalled production at its factory in Vance, Alabama, last week, while General Motors did the same for Wentzville Assembly in Missouri. BMW and Fiat Chrysler were also affected by fire, but claimed they could adjust production schedules to avoid a total shutdown. Mercedes has since stated that its factory would resume SUV assembly on modified schedule later this week. But there have been no updates on the other facilities.
[Image: Ford Motor Co.]