Ford delays electric three-row SUV with new EV pickup arriving in 2026

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After EV sales picked up in the first quarter, Ford is scaling back as it delays plans to launch its new three-row electric SUV. Ford is pushing back EV production at its Oakville, Ontario, plant as it shifts to expand its hybrid lineup.

Ford’s electric vehicle sales surged 86% in the first three months of the year, enough to secure second in the US EV market behind Tesla.

The American automaker sold 20,233 EVs in Q1 2024, topping rival General Motors with 16,425 electric cars delivered.

Ford’s F-150 Lightning remained the top-selling electric pickup, with sales up 80% over last year with 7,743 units delivered. Mustang Mach-E sales climbed 77% YOY, reaching 9,589, making it the second-best-selling electric SUV behind Tesla’s Model Y.

As commercial customers continue shifting to electric options, Ford Pro saw EV adoption rise by over 40%. The company said many 2024 F-150 Lightning orders are repeat buyers.

The surge in EV sales comes after Ford slashed prices earlier this year on the Mustang Mach-E and introduced significant incentives on the Lightning electric pickup.

2023 Ford Mustang Mach-E Trim Previous MSRP New Starting price Difference
Select RWD $42,995 $39,895 -$3,100
Select AWD $45,995 $42,895 -$3,100
Premium RWD $46,995 $42,895 -$4,100
Premium AWD $49,995 $45,895 -$4,100
Premium RWD (Extended Range) $53,995 $45,895 -$8,100
Premium AWD (Extended Range) $56,995 $48,895 -$8,100
California Route 1 AWD $56,995 $48,895 -$8,100
GT $59,995 $52,395 -$7,600
GT (Performance Edition) $64,995 $57,395 -$7,600
2023 Ford Mustang Mach-E prices (Not including $1,800 destination fee)

A recent report from data analytics firm, Cloud Theory, said Mach-E movement was “dramatic and immediate.” Despite this, Ford is pulling back plans as it delays EV production at its Oakville plant, including its electric three-row SUV.

Ford-Mustang-Mach-E
Ford Mustang Mach-E (Source: Ford)

Ford delays three-row electric SUV amid shift to hybrids

In an update Thursday, Ford announced it’s pushing back the launch of next-gen EVs at its Ontario assembly plant with plans to expand its hybrid lineup.

The new three-row electric SUV will launch in 2027, two years later than Ford initially planned. Ford said the extra time allows “for the consumer market for three-row EVs to further develop” while the company takes advantage of new battery tech.

Ford-delaying-electric-SUV
All-electric Ford Explorer (Source: Ford)

CEO Jim Farley reiterated Ford’s commitment to the region, saying, “We are fully committed to manufacturing in Canada and believe this decision will help us build a profitably growing business for the long term.”

Meanwhile, Ford said progress at its Tennessee EV plant is on track. The company is installing 4,000 tons of stamping equipment for the next all-electric Ford pickup truck.

Ford plans to begin deliveries of the new EV pickup in 2026 and will “gradually ramp up production” to ensure quality.

Ford-affordable-EV-pickup
2024 Ford F-150 Flash (Source: Ford)

The automaker continues expanding its Ohio Assembly plant to build new electric commercial vehicles for Ford Pro, which are set to launch mid-decade.

Ford is shifting its strategy as it looks to expand its hybrid lineup. By the end of the decade, the company plans to offer a hybrid model across its Ford Blue lineup.

Farley said as the number two EV brand in the US, “We are committed to scaling a profitable EV business, using capital wisely and bringing to market the right gas, hybrid and fully electric vehicles at the right time.”

2024-Ford-F-150-Lightning-lineup
2024 Ford F-150 Lightning lineup (Source: Ford)

Ford’s leader added, “Our breakthrough, next-generation EVs will be new from the ground up and fully software enabled, with ever-improving digital experiences and a multitude of potential services.”

In February, Farley revealed the company had a “skunkworks” team developing a smaller, low-cost EV platform that will underpin multiple vehicles. The team is led by Alan Clarke, a top engineer for Tesla’s Model Y and Model 3.

The first models based on the platform are expected to be a smaller electric pickup and SUV with prices starting around $25,000.

Electrek’s Take

As Ford delays the launch of its three-row electric SUV, overseas rivals look to take advantage. Kia’s new three-row EV9 is off to a strong start, with over 4,000 units sold in the US through March.

Hyundai is also surging ahead with its first three-row electric SUV, the IONIQ 9, expected to launch by the end of the year. Volvo is another overseas automaker that continues to see results after doubling down on EVs with plans to go all-electric by 2030.

Rivian’s R1S was the seventh best-selling EV in the US last year as the company scales production. Last month, Rivian unveiled its smaller, more affordable R2, which will start at $45,000 when it launches in early 2026. The EV startup just hit a major milestone after its 100,000th EV rolled off the production line this week.

While others are plowing ahead, Ford is throttling back. Delaying production could cost it market share over the next few years as rivals look to take advantage of the shift.

What are your thoughts on Ford delaying production of its three-row electric SUV? Let us know in the comments.

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