Global chip shortage forces Ford Bronco production halt
The ongoing chip shortage is the latest thing to endanger Ford’s summer deadline to deliver the first customer Broncos.
In case you hadn’t heard about it yet, the world is currently experiencing the very odd crisis of a microchip shortage and the automotive industry is being hit hard. The latest consequence of the shortage is Ford who has had to temporarily put production of its upcoming Bronco SUV on hold.
It was announced this week that Ford’s Michigan Assembly Plant, responsible for production of the mid-size SUV will shut its doors for two weeks in May, those of the 17th and 24th. The shutdown comes at the same time as a nationwide closure for the company’s factories, though the Michigan plant was not originally planned to close.
In fact, Ford had already announced that plants in Kansas and Ohio would also take a break in May but was aiming to keep the Bronco production on track for the first customer deliveries in early summer. Though the Blue Oval has said that the first deliveries will not be impacted by the forced shutdown, one has to wonder if it’s realistic to keep aiming for such a tight deadline.
It seems Ford planned ahead and diverted some of the now rare microchips to its Michigan Assembly Plant in detriment to some of its less popular models. The hope is that this focus on the highly anticipated SUV will allow the first customers to receive their cars by the time the weather gets too good to not be having fun off-road.
Ford’s move to keep crucial chips for its most profitable model is something we can expect to see being done by other manufacturers. Unfortunately for those that hate them, this means SUVs will become even more dominant on the top sellers lists for the time being as those are the cars that make the most money.
Being a side affect from the sudden boom in computer usage since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the shortage of semiconductors and therefore backlog of microchip orders is set to go on for a while longer. Experts are even saying stocks won’t be fully replenished until next year.