Maintenance and inventory reduction are lead factors

Ford Motor Company is planning to idle F-150 and Transit van production for one week during January at its Kansas City Assembly Plant in Missouri. The time will be used primarily to help reduce Ford’s supply of the trucks and vans as consumer demand wanes. Facility maintenance will also be performed during the down time, scheduled for January 2 through 9.

Production of the F-150 will continue uninterrupted at Ford’s Dearborn Truck Plant.

Ford says it has a 108-day supply of Transit vans, up from an 83-day supply at this time last year. The F-Series pickups currently have an 85-day supply, which is actually down from an 87-day supply last year.

The Kansas City Assembly Plant employs roughly 7,400 workers and runs three shifts around the clock. Employees will be retained for the week-long stint. This marks the second time in four months Ford has idled the Kansas City Plant. Back in October of 2016, the plant, along with four other Ford manufacturing facilities, halted production for a week.

Other automakers are doing the same. General Motors is having to go a step further come 2017. The automaker is planning to idle a number of its small car assembly plants in order to realign its output supply the slowing customer demand for compact and mid-size cars. Come January, GM will begin laying off nearly 3,300 workers as it cuts production shifts in three of its assembly plants in Michigan and Ohio.

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Why It Matters

American car buyers are slowing their feverish hunger for new vehicles in the last months of 2016. What’s more, the beginning months of a year are traditionally slow for new vehicles sales. Combined, the is resulting in several automakers applying the brakes to full-scale production – at least for the time being.

Production of SUVs, crossovers, and pickup trucks should not see the dramatic impact that’s being experienced by small and mid-size cars. American buyers are still hungry for the family friendly and image-padding vehicles. Ford is still on track for snagging its 40th consecutive year of building the best-selling half-ton pickup on the market.

Read our full review on the 2017 Ford F-150 here.

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