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Ford Motor to Revamp F-150 Truck Factories

Ford Motor reportedly plans a factory restructuring for its F-150 truck, the company’s most profitable vehicle.
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Ford Motor  (F) - Get Ford Motor Company Report reportedly plans a factory restructuring for its F-150 truck, the company’s most profitable vehicle.

Ford will temporarily close a factory in Michigan next month to put in machinery for a redesigned F-150 pickup that begins selling in 2021, Bloomberg reports. 

Ford also is building a new facility next to its truck plant in its headquarters city, Dearborn, Mich., to produce electric F-150s, sources told the news service.

The company also is set to redo its Missouri pickup factory in October to get ready for the redesigned truck, after closing the Dearborn plant for two weeks of retooling starting Sept. 7, the Bloomberg sources said.

All this will slash F-150 production by about 100,000 vehicles this fall, according to Benchmark analyst Michael Ward, Bloomberg reports.

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Ford said earlier this month that Jim Farley would succeed Jim Hackett as chief executive. 

“Ford’s stock was just under $11 when Hackett took over in May 2017, so we think the move may lead to share-price appreciation in the short term,” Morningstar analyst David Whiston wrote in a commentary.

“For now, we are leaving our fair value [$8] in place due to Ford’s high debt load," the analyst said. 

"We want to see Farley produce meaningful improvement, which may take until next year due to launches of the new-generation F-150 late this year and three Broncos coming in 2020-21.”

On the plus side, “we look forward to seeing what Farley brings as a CEO, and we expect a more direct communication style than Hackett’s,” Whiston said.

Ford shares recently traded at $6.92, up 3.8%. They have dropped 28% this year.