Ford begins full production of F-150 Lightning electric pickup; planned annual run rate of 150k at Rouge Center
Ford has begun full production of F-150 Lightning electric pickup at the ultra-modern Rouge Electric Vehicle Center within Ford’s historic Rouge Complex. Ford has 200,000 reservations for the Lightning and is expanding the Rouge Electric Vehicle Center to ramp up production to a planned annual run rate of 150,000 in 2023.
The company has invested a total of $950 million and created 750 jobs at the Rouge Electric Vehicle Center. Ford’s investment in Michigan for F-150 Lightning alone now totals more than $1 billion, with 1,700 recently created jobs spread among five Ford plants in the state, including Van Dyke Electric Powertrain Center, where Lightning electric motors and electric transaxles are assembled, and Rawsonville Components Plant, where Lightning batteries are assembled.
Ford is on track to deliver more than 2 million electric vehicles annually by 2026, equal to about one-third of the company’s global volume, on the way to 50% by 2030.
With acceleration from zero to 60 mph in the mid-4 second range with the extended-range battery, the freedom of a 10-kilowatt smart power plant on wheels, a starting price less than $40,000 before available tax credits and software updates that will make it even better over time, F-150 Lightning is attracting new customers to Ford.
Three-quarters of reservation holders do not currently own or lease a Ford vehicle. F-150 Lightning is also converting many of them to first-time truck or electric vehicle buyers.
The Rouge Electric Vehicle Center is the first Ford plant without traditional in-floor conveyor lines and instead uses robotic Autonomous Guided Vehicles to move F-150 Lightning trucks from workstation to station in the plant.
These Autonomous Guided Vehicles create more flexibility in the plant for additional production output, quality checks and product customizations, among other benefits. Changes can be made quickly without the constraints of a typical line that requires the installation of floor chains, moving mats, conveyors and overhead cranes.
The plant also uses cobots, or collaborative robots, that work side-by-side with people without any safety cages needed. These cobots help with tasks that would be ergonomically challenging for employees, while also keeping employees safe.
The Rouge Electric Vehicle Center is a zero-waste-to-landfill site, meaning none of the material generated as a by-product of the manufacturing process will go to landfills. The plant was built on the former Dearborn Assembly Plant site, using materials from the prior plant in the foundation.