Ford continues to have problems launching a new vehicle without lots of drama. The Bronco is a classic example of Ford’s inability to get a new model off of the ground cleanly. It has announced it will delay the production of the Bronco once again. But the reason may actually delay the Bronco indefinitely.
The Bronco delay comes down to plain old manufacturing hiccups
No, it has nothing to do with microchips. This comes down to plain old manufacturing. Or, the lack thereof. Ford is having trouble with a supplier making the hardtops for the full-size Bronco. That means probably the most popular Bronco option will not be available initially.
Ford just sent an email to customers who are patiently waiting for their Broncos. It says that “this launch has scuttled our best intentions and assumptions.” This references the issues it is having with the hardtop.
Ford says the hardtop is its ”Achilles heel.” Demand for the top has outstripped Ford’s ability to make them fast enough. It goes on to say it has “invested millions of dollars to fix our roof supply issue.” Unfortunately, all of the money and effort hasn’t amounted to much.
After the bungled Explorer and F-150 launches, all eyes are on Ford
Ford knows all eyes are on them after production launch issues with its new 2019 Explorer and F-150. Explorers coming off the line at Chicago assembly were hauled to the Spring Mountain plant in Michigan. Once there, they were put on a makeshift line to address problems before being sent to dealers. This involved thousands of new 2019 Explorers.
With the F-150, it is a microchip supply problem. Trucks stacked up in and around Detroit Metro Airport parking lots waiting for the remedial installation of components containing microchips. In addition, numerous recalls have plagued the new F-150 pickup.
Ford is hoping to convey its earnest efforts to get Bronco production rolling. It is making available priority access to its Bronco Off-Roadeo events. These are off-road experiences similar to Jeep’s Easter Moab confabs.
Four Off-Roadeo events were planned but without Broncos…
There will be four different Off-Roadeo events later this year. The question now is if there will be enough Broncos built to attend these events. Dates are a secret but the first one slated for Texas was supposed to be in May.
And the Vermont event was canceled when the state denied the permit Ford applied for. Rumor has it that New Hampshire is the new spot. The bottom line is that with the continued moving target for full-size Broncos getting into customer hands who knows when the events will happen?
So, between launch issues and their effects on Ford’s Off-Roadeo events, things have not started off well. Who knew this would be so difficult to pull off? After all, Ford has been doing it for more than 100 years, so building and launching new Fords should be in the company’s DNA.