"Thousands" of Ford Broncos have been piling up in a Michigan lot - held up for sale by the ongoing semiconductor shortage that has stung the automotive industry over the last 2 years and that shows little sign of letting up.
Demand for the new Bronco has been robust since Ford re-did its design and re-introduced it years ago. But it appears that Ford is having trouble meeting that demand thanks to "two years of industry disruptions", Autoblog pointed out over the long weekend.
Buyers had started to sign up to purchase the revamped Bronco as far back as 2020. But after dealing with issues like defective tops last summer, and now dealing with additional chip shortage roadblocks, it appears the supply sieve has yet to truly open.
As a result, trucks are now "stacking up in a lot outside the Michigan Assembly Plant", Autoblog reports.
"All we can do at this point is scale as fast as we can and break the constraints and communicate to (buyers) what’s realistic," Ford CEO Jim Farley said last week.
"I do think they could be communicating better," one potential Bronco buyer said to Autoblog. The report noted that Ford's distribution strategy of Broncos to dealerships remains dynamic and has not only customers - but also dealers - confused:
Dealers and reservation holders thought Bronco orders would be filled on a first-come-first-serve basis. Instead, Ford decided 50% of production would be for reservation holders, 25% would factor in dealer location, the final 25% would consider a dealer's historic sales figures. That weighted half the formula in favor of dealers in large markets. Then Ford changed the calculus to factor in Bronco Sport sales as well. Then Ford lowered the threshold for the percentage of Broncos a dealer needed provide to reservation holders out of the allocation, the result being that "four out of 10 new Broncos can go to a walk-in customer or the highest bidder."
Here is a video of what the lot outside the Michigan Plant currently looks like: