DEARBORN, Mich. — Ford Motor has added a third production shift to its Michigan plant that produces the electric F-150 Lightning as it looks to boost output.
The addition of the third shift comes as the automaker is expanding the newly built facility to hit a top capacity of 150,000 units by next fall.
Ford is on track to hit that previously announced production milestone, Corey Williams, plant manager of the Dearborn Truck Plant and Rouge electric vehicle center, said during a tour of the facility Tuesday.
The third shift was added in November, bumping up the electric truck plant’s employment from 500 to roughly 750 people.
The plant is now running three rotating crews of workers on 10-hour shifts seven days a week, Williams said, maintaining a high level of production even as construction workers scramble to complete an expansion of the facility.
“That’s how we’re doing this fast. We’re building product while building” out the factory, Williams said.
Ford had originally planned to build about 40,000 Lightnings per year, in a new facility adjacent to its longtime pickup factory in Dearborn. But it decided to expand the factory to boost production after early demand for the electric truck exceeded its expectations.
Earlier on Tuesday, MotorTrend magazine named the F-150 Lightning is its 2023 truck of the year. The magazine’s editors said the truck received unanimous support for the award, citing its overall performance and appeal to traditional pickup-truck buyers.
Through the end of November, Ford has sold 13,258 F-150 Lightnings.