Ford Is Rethinking Its $12 Billion Investment In EVs

F-150 Lightnings being manufactured at Ford's Rouge Electric Vehicle Center

F-150 Lightnings being manufactured at Ford’s Rouge Electric Vehicle Center
Image: Ford

Ford, like other automakers, have gone all in on EVs to the tune of billions of dollars. That gamble hasn’t quite played out like Ford expected it to however. EVs sales have slowed and inventories of once popular models like the Mustang Mach-E and F-150 Lightning have caused the automaker to slash prices and offer discounts to entice buyers.

Reality has set in at the automaker. So much so that the Verge is reporting that Ford is halting its development of its $12 billion EV facility in Kentucky. The plant would have made batteries for future EV models. While this facility won’t be moving forward right now, Ford says this doesn’t affect its Blue Oval City facility in Tennessee or any of its planned next gen EVs.

Overall though things haven’t looked good for Ford lately. The company’s latest financial releases show $1.3 billion lost this last quarter. Another $3.1 billion has been lost so far this year with the company expecting to lose a total of $4 billion in 2023. And it’s not just Ford in this boat either, from the Verge:

Ford’s not alone in all this, of course. General Motors is pushing back production of its new slate of electric trucks and SUVs. Tesla CEO Elon Musk spent a large chunk of his last earnings call moaning about interest rates.

Customers would probably agree. Most of the early adopters have, well, adopted, and the next tier of possible customers has enough sticker shock to keep their wallets closed. Ford has tried to address this with new releases like the F-150 Lightning Flash, a mid-priced trim of its electric truck. The company says that the customers will decide how many EVs it makes — and right now, that means tapping the brakes on big projects.

While it looks bad for some automakers, it’s a win for customers as EV prices are coming down. With discounts, price cuts and a looming point of sale tax credit change starting in 2024, maybe EV sales will pick up again enough for these automakers fortunes to turn around.

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