Ford Responds to Surging Demand for Cars and Trucks

Ford Motor (NYSE: F  ) is on fire -- in a good way.

To meet "surging customer demand," said vice president of North America Manufacturing Jim Tetreault, the company has decided to add 200,000 cars and trucks to its production schedule for 2013. That's in addition to the 400,000 units in production capacity it added in 2012.

Additionally, Ford announced Wednesday that it is cutting its summer line shutdown time in half, to just one week, at 20 of its North American plants. By reducing shutdown time, the company says it will actually be increasing capacity this year by closer to 240,000 units than to the 200,000 headline figure.

In related news, Ford says it is progressing toward its plan to hire 12,000 new hourly workers by 2015. Last year, the company made 8,000 salaried and hourly hires. This year, it expects to add 3,500 workers to the payroll.

Ford shares reacted positively to the news, rising 0.1% in Wednesday trading, defying the market downdraft and closing at $14.97.


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