Ford suspending production of F-150

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The shutdowns could cost Ford as much as 15,000 trucks per week, according to James Albertine, an analyst with Consumer Edge Research.

CNBC reported that at the end of April, there were almost a quarter of a million F-Series trucks on the ground at dealerships nationwide, with a high percentage of them being the F-150.

However, if the shutdown lasts over a month, buyers could have trouble finding the version of the truck that they are looking for.

The fire was contained to a small portion of the 208,000-square-foot plant, located in Eaton Rapids, Michigan. The company is relying on SUVs and trucks like the F-150 to drive its bottom line, ditching slow-selling cars that generate little in the way of profits.

A damaged auto supply plant in MI, now causing production problems for five automakers including Mercedes-Benz, anticipates rebuilding in four months. The average F-Series truck went out the door at $46,700 a year ago, according to the automaker.

Spokeswoman Jodi Tinson said FCA isn't expecting any large production disruptions at any factories other than Windsor.

Ford also said current inventory levels on dealer lots will satisfy demand for the F-150.

The company has suspended F-150 and Super Duty production in Kansas City, Missouri; Dearborn, Michigan; and Louisville, Kentucky.

Mercedes employs about 3,700 people who build about 286,000 vehicles annually at its Tuscaloosa, Ala., plant, including the GLE and GLS SUVs and the C-Class sedan.

"They will be making a decision soon,"said Ford spokesperson, Kelli Felker in a news release". The parts supplier itself, Meridian Magnesium Factory, suffered from a serious fire and resulting explosion which has caused serious damage. Ford accounts for less than a third of the parts produced at the Meridian plant, according to the company.

Officials at Ford confirmed that Meridian is the producer of "front bolster", which reinforces the engine at the point in which the radiator is attached on its F-150, Expedition, Navigator and Super Duty trucks.

An executive with Ford acknowledged on Wednesday that the entire supply chain must be rebuilt.