Major Automaker Slashes Key Short-Term EV Production Target As Industry Troubles Persist

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Ford is cutting its production goals for one of its signature electric vehicle (EV) product lines as persistent problems continue to dog the EV industry, according to Automotive News.

The company sent a memorandum to its suppliers detailing its decision to reduce production of F-150 Lightning pickups in 2024, slicing its target of 3,200 cars each week down to 1,600 units, according to Automotive News. The reduction is a major deviation away from the company’s oft-stated goal to produce 400,000 EVs by the middle of 2024, and stands as the latest sign of trouble for President Joe Biden’s EV agenda.

The company pointed to lower-than-anticipated levels of consumer demand for EVs as the key factor in its move to slash production, according to Automotive News. Slower demand growth has been an industry-wide problem in recent months. (RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: Watchdog Requests Investigation Into Key Official Driving Biden’s EV Push)

“We will continue to match production to customer demand,” a spokesperson for Ford told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “The narrative has taken over that EVs aren’t growing; they’re growing. It’s just growing at a slower pace than the industry and, quite frankly, we expected,” Ford CFO John Lawler said of the industry during the company’s third quarter earnings call, according to Automotive News.

The F-150 Lightning, which currently costs about $8,000 more than the gas-powered F-150, was set to be a key pillar of Ford’s 2024 EV sales goals, according to The New York Times. Ford stated in September that it aimed to produce up to 150,000 F-150 Lightnings each year.

The company also recently cut its production outlook for the Mustang Mach-E, another one of its leading EV product lines, according to Electrek. Ford estimated that it would lose $4.5 billion in 2023 alone on its EV product line, according to the company’s second quarter sales breakdown.

The development is the freshest sign of trouble for the Biden administration’s EV agenda, which aims to have EVs make up 50% of all new car sales by 2030. The administration granted Ford and a foreign partner a $9 billion loan package in June to subsidize the construction of battery plants.

A separate subsidized project involving Ford and CATL, a Chinese battery firm, was poised to boost the company’s EV production before Ford announced a pause in construction on the factory.

The administration has committed billions of dollars to subsidize EV manufacturing and charging infrastructure, and also to provide consumer tax credits to increase the appeal of the pricier vehicles. Despite these efforts, the EV market is in a tenuous position beyond concerns about consumer demand: like Ford, other manufacturers are mostly losing considerable amounts of money on their EV products, and other auto executives are also backing off some of their short-term production targets.

The White House did not respond immediately to a request for comment.

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