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Next Ford F-150 delayed for aluminum body panel issues?
Autoblog.com


The timetable for next-generation Ford F-150 may be in trouble if a report from The Truth About Cars is true. The next F-150 is slated to make extensive use of weight-saving aluminum in its body, but the aluminum alloy provided by suppliers hasn't met Ford's requirements in the earliest phases of pre-production, according to the report.

The F-150 represents a huge portion of Ford's profits and is the best-selling truck in the US, even in the face of increased pressure from cross-town rivals General Motors and Ram. While the current truck is treading water against its competition, we'd be lying if we said the F-150 weren't growing quite long in the tooth.

If production of the next-generation of the Ford cash cow, said to be based on the Atlas Concept from the 2013 Detroit Auto Show (pictured above), is delayed, it could be bad for Ford. Production at Ford's Dearborn Truck Plant is already set to be delayed six to ten weeks, missing an internal on-sale deadline of Memorial Day.

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It seems the above article does not understand the power of the F-150. Currently the F-150 is up 19.5% YTD and outselling the combined Chevy Silvarado + Sierra by close to 20k units monthly and sitting at about 100k units ahead YTD. That is with the all new 2014 Silverado being up 19.1% and the all new 2014 Sierra up 20.3%.

Which means Ford can just crank out more of the Best Selling, Best Built 2014 F-150 models for a few more months until the 2015 is ready, and still increase it's already wide lead against the competition.
 

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I suppose that Ford announced the aluminum F-150 to cut off the rumour mill that was churning full steam, but this shows why it does no good for manufacturers to share plans like this so far out. This story (if it's true, and it might very well not be) makes it seem like Ford basically had no idea if aluminum would work or not when they made their announcement. That is certainly not the case, but it isn't a very encouraging revelation.

As Bloggin said, I don't see the fact that the current F-150 might run a bit longer as a problem as it's still going strong, but if they hadn't mentioned the aluminum bodies until now we wouldn't be hearing rumours that it's going to be delayed.
 

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The current F-150 is so good , that a full year delay will be no problem for Ford. This truck have no competition from GM or Dodg...ahemmmm... Ram
 
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