Learn from Tesla? New Ford F-150 will reduce 2400 parts to lower costs

Ford's new F-150 will have fewer parts, reducing costs - following in Tesla's footsteps

【PhoneAuto News】Recently, foreign media reported that Ford’s fuel vehicle department, Ford Blue, will undergo several reforms in the next few months to minimize production costs and maximize profits.

Ford F-150 Pickup Truck

Under this strategy, the number of customizable versions of the new Ford F-150 pickup truck will be significantly reduced in the coming months. At the same time, about 2,400 parts for the 2024 model year will be reduced compared to the current model. Kumar Galothra, the president of Ford Blue, detailed the company’s plan in an interview with the media: “In the next few months, we will reduce the number of customizable models of the F-150 to an unprecedented extent. Reducing the number of choices also means reducing the number of parts. Compared to the current model, the new F-150 will be able to reduce about 2,400 parts. This means that there will be far fewer parts that need to be designed, tested, and quality managed.”

But optimization is not limited to the gasoline version of the F-150. The Explorer SUV will also undergo similar changes. The president of Ford Blue said that the company currently has 500 cable harness combinations, which will be reduced to less than 20 in the coming months. Other seemingly insignificant things have also been adjusted, and by optimizing the material specifications of the front longitudinal beam, bracket, and exhaust manifold, about $30 million can be saved annually.

“Our costs are not competitive, we must reduce material and structural costs.” Galothra said, “We are taking a multi-pronged approach to minimize raw material costs. We are benchmarking many of our competitors and working with suppliers to reduce these costs.”

Meanwhile, as software becomes increasingly important, extending the use of the car-making platform can further reduce costs. Extending the platform usage time can reduce the cost of developing new platforms and also lower sheet metal costs. However, this means that the number of redesigns during a generation’s lifecycle will increase.

Ford’s approach is reminiscent of Tesla, which constantly optimizes its manufacturing process by reducing the number of vehicle versions and improving its integrated molding capability. This simplifies the number of parts for its vehicles, effectively controlling costs, and becoming one of the most profitable mainstream car models in the world today.

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