Dealerships are feeling the stress.
The fourteenth-generation Ford F-150 has just begun arriving in dealerships and into the garages of anxious customers. That's good news for the Blue Oval but dealerships are feeling the stress of high demand. The Detroit Free Press reports that many Ford dealerships are quickly selling new F-150s not long after they arrive on the lot. In some cases, they are being sold only a few hours after arriving. Dealer employees also couldn't hide their excitement.
"When the semi pulled in carrying the F-150s, it was a very exciting moment," said one dealer sales manager from Indianapolis. "Everyone rushed out to see the new truck and all the new changes with the body style and the interior. Most all of the salesmen and half the service department watched it being unloaded. They were like kids at Christmas waiting for a new toy."
Customer deposits are continuing to fly in. The F-150 has been America's best-selling vehicle for four decades and there's no indication this will change. But part of the current demand surge for the redesigned truck is due to a lack of 2020 F-150s.
"Because of the increased sales after the pandemic, the 2020 inventory is depleted," another general manager said. "However, people want the 2021 because of the fresh look and the technology. People are willing to pay more for the new style. You have a bottle opener on the tailgate with every 2021 F-150. Stuff like that makes it sellable and fun. It's not just transportation. It's cool." Trading in luxury vehicles, such as a Mercedes or Lexus, is also not uncommon.
Ford is fully aware of the high demand, confirming dealer orders for more stock is more than double the current production schedule. Ford only began 2021 F-150 delivery late last month, several weeks behind schedule as a result of a two-month factory shutdown from March until May because of the pandemic. Even in a normal year, customers would have flocked to dealers for the latest F-150, so think of the current situation as pent up demand.
Ford has not released sales totals yet but this information should be available early next month. The 2021 F-150 carries a starting price of $31,000 and ranges to nearly $80,000. The average price buyers pay is $51,000.