Ford’s U.S. sales fall 33% as chip shortage devastates auto industry

DETROIT – U.S. gross sales of Ford Motor’s new cars very last month declined by 33.1% from a yr earlier because of to an ongoing worldwide scarcity of semiconductor chips which is wreaking havoc on the automotive sector, the business reported Thursday.

The Detroit automaker’s product sales capped off a dismal month of U.S. vehicle income in August, which plummeted to an altered advertising rate of 13.09 million autos. Which is the worst speed since June 2020 and down from this year’s peak of 18.5 million in April, in accordance to auto details organization Motor Intelligence.

Analysts expected the August providing pace to be in between 13.1 million and 14.4 million vehicles, with J.D. Energy and LMC Automotive forecasting total income to decrease by 13.7% in comparison with August 2020.

The gross sales rate for any offered thirty day period actions how several autos the marketplace would offer for the yr if it sold the exact total each and every thirty day period. It is really a major barometer of the industry’s overall health and desire.

August is historically 1 of the larger vehicle sales months of the year, but the chip shortage has brought on motor vehicle stock amounts to plummet to record lows and pricing of new automobiles and trucks to skyrocket.

The Ford company brand is shown on a indication outside the house of the Chicago Assembly Plant on February 03, 2021 in Chicago, Illinois.

Scott Olson | Getty Photos

Sellers only have about 942,000 automobiles in stock for retail sale, compared with roughly 3 million ahead of the coronavirus pandemic two years back, according to Thomas King, president of the info and analytics division at J.D. Energy.

“Even though stock is arriving at dealers everyday, it is merely changing the autos becoming sold, preventing sellers from growing inventories to a level important to support a higher product sales rate,” King mentioned.

Whilst most main U.S. automakers have switched to quarterly sales reporting, numerous other folks that nonetheless report regular monthly revenue such as Honda and Subaru also noted double-digit losses in August. Toyota, Volvo, Hyundai and Kia described slight sales raises or losses in comparison with a calendar year ago.

Profits of approximately just about every vehicle in Ford’s lineup were down previous month compared with very last yr, with incremental revenue gains from some new automobiles these types of as its Bronco SUVs. Most notably, Ford’s bestselling F-Sequence pickups declined by 22.5%.

Ford’s total sales last thirty day period topped 124,176 vehicles. Truck product sales ended up down by practically 30%, while SUVs had been off by 25.3% and auto sales fell by 86% from August 2020.

A silver lining for Ford last thirty day period was that its retail sales were being up by 6.5% compared with July but still off by 33% from August 2020, according to Andrew Frick, vice president, Ford Revenue U.S. and Canada.

Ford’s revenue appear a day right after the automaker confirmed it was at the time all over again cutting output of its F-150 pickup truck and other highly profitable autos due to the ongoing international lack of semiconductor chips.

The origin of the scarcity dates to early final yr when Covid prompted rolling shutdowns of car assembly vegetation. As the amenities closed, the wafer and chip suppliers diverted the areas to other sectors these kinds of as shopper electronics, which weren’t anticipated to be as hurt by stay-at-property orders.

The problem is expected to expense the world wide automotive market $110 billion in earnings in 2021, according to consulting company AlixPartners.