Ford delays three-row electric SUV, next EV truck program

Ford, the second largest automaker in the United States by sales, is delaying the launch of its new three-row electric vehicles it will build at its assembly complex in Oakville, Ontario to 2027 from 2025. The automaker will also delay deliveries of an all-new EV truck it will build at a new plant in western Tennessee until 2026. Last year, the automaker said it would begin production in late 2025 and build up to 500,000 electric trucks annually.

In a release, Ford said the delay “will allow for the consumer market for three-row EVs to further develop and enable Ford to take advantage of emerging battery technology.”

While the rollout of EVs is being “re-timed,” to use the automaker’s own phrasing, Ford “is expanding its hybrid electric vehicle offerings. By the end of the decade, the company expects to offer hybrid powertrains across its entire Ford Blue lineup in North America.”¬†

The retreat comes as U.S. electric vehicle sales growth slowed to 2.7% in the first quarter of the year, far below the 47% increase that fueled record sales and a 7.6% market share last year. Sales of new vehicles overall grew nearly 5%, and the EV market share declined to 7.1%.

Hybrid sales, however, grew 45% from January through March, while plug-in hybrids grew 34%.

Ford Chief Financial Office John Lawler told investors last year Ford would delay some of its planned multibillion-dollar investment in new EV and battery production capacity, citing “tremendous downward pressure” on prices.

Ford had promised to retool the Ontario plant to make EVs during contract bargaining in 2020 with Canada’s Unifor union. Ford said Thursday the overhaul of the Oakville assembly plant is set to begin in the second quarter of this year as planned.

General Motors said in October it would delay production of electric pickup trucks at its plant in Michigan’s Orion Township by a year.

Material from Reuters and the Associated Press was used in this report.

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