Ford Willing to Bet Billions on EVs
Ford has doubled down on its commitment to battery electric vehicles, and specifically the new Ford F-150 Lightning. The blue oval received over 120,000 deposits for the Lightning, and because of that demand the company was already planning on spending an additional $850 million to meet production goals.
According to Reuters, Ford wants annual production numbers for the Lightning to be around 80,000 by 2024. That is double their prior target.
Now, Ford is ready to take the next step towards that goal by investing $11.4 billion to create two manufacturing campuses, one in Tennessee and the other in Kentucky.
Blue Oval City, which will be near Memphis, is slated to cost $5.6 billion, cover 3600 acres, and include a battery plant. This campus will build an extended lineup of F-Series electric pickups starting in 2025. While the details are still being ironed out, Governor Lee welcomed Ford to the Volunteer State at a ceremony on Tuesday, September 27th.
The $5.8 billion, 1500-acre battery manufacturing complex in Glendale, Kentucky will be used for other Ford and Lincoln EVs starting the same year. SK Innovation, the “Green Energy and Materials Company”, will be partnering with Ford on both projects. Kentucky officials confirmed the move on Monday, September 26th.
An Economical Jumpstart
CEO Jim Farley spoke with Fox Business regarding the plans, and he stated that “We work with both governors and the development teams and there’s skilled labor here in these specific sites. [It] took us a year to find these sites.”
Farley thinks that Ford will hire up to 11,000 workers combined and that both locations will put out about “a million worth of batteries.
The success of the F-150 and the overwhelming demand for the Lightning and Mach-E are really what is driving Ford’s decision to invest this much in sustainable transport. The desire for these vehicles seems to be there, and Farley recognizes that they need to build up their battery capacity if they want to meet that demand.
Ford wants 40-50% of their global vehicle output to be EVs by 2030. These two deals are a massive steppingstone to help Ford reach that goal.