Quality Issues Force Ford To Suspend Production At Louisville Assembly Plant

Industry News / 12 Comments

The Escape crossover is causing Ford problems.

Due to quality issues with the revamped Ford Escape, the automaker has found itself having to idle its Louisville Assembly Plant (LAP), leaving thousands of workers out of work. According to a memo acquired by WDRB News, the workers are set to return on February 20.

The fourth generation Ford Escape launched in 2019, but the problems started with last year's major facelift. It has constantly been suffering production problems, including supply chain issues. According to the memo issued by LAP Manager Andrew Tapp, the automaker "encountered a few concerns that our engineering team wanted to review and resolve" before resuming production.


More specifically, Brandon Reisinger, the plant's building chairman for UAW Local 862, said in a video message to employees that the current issue is to do with software. Understandably, the union representing the workers is finding the plant's issues and stuttering production of the Escape frustrating. Ford plans to make up production, however, as demand for the Escape is high.

"I can't stress enough that our internal metrics are really good for the new model, and we have made a lot of progress," Tapp assured in the leaked memo.

"We are committed to ensuring our vehicles are built with the quality our customers deserve and will take the appropriate actions to deliver this commitment," Ford spokeswoman Kelli Felker said.


"We've got orders; we've got people that are contacting us saying, 'Hey, can you tell me when my truck's going to ship?' So it's not something where we're at risk here," Reisinger said in the video. "It is just something where they're trying to get it right for once before we ship the trucks out of the plant."

Due to supply chain issues, Ford has dropped the hands-free tailgate feature and included options for customers to drop Sirius XM and go with a manual key.

But despite certain features being cut, the Escape has still impressed with its next-level occupant safety technologies. The 2023 Ford Escape was one of only two cars to successfully pass the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's (IIHS) updated rear occupant protection test. Here's hoping Ford can quickly get past this setback.


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