Free Press: Ilitch School faculty discusses fire's impact on Ford supply chain
Ford suspended all production Wednesday of its profit-driving F-150 pickup, the nation's best-selling vehicle for more than 35 years, because of a "black swan" parts shortage. The production halt was caused by a fire May 2 at a parts factory in small-town Michigan that rippled through the North American auto industry but hit Ford hardest. Production at General Motors, Fiat Chrysler and Mercedes also was disrupted.
"The impact on everybody else is going to pale compared to Ford," said Abhay (Abe) Vadhavkar, director of manufacturing, engineering and technology at the Center for Automotive Research in Ann Arbor. "For Ford, this is potentially enormous." Vadhavkar is a part-time global supply chain management faculty member in the Mike Ilitch School of Business.