Ford EV sales plummet by more than half

Mach-E dragging down numbers after losing half of its tax credit subsidies

Ford EV sales plummet by more than half
Ford sees January sales cut in half

Detroit automaker Ford's January US BEV sales fell by nearly 54pc compared to December, and by almost 11pc year-on-year.

In total, the OEM sold just 4,674 BEVs in January, compared to 10,148 in December, which was its best-ever EV month.

The sales announcement comes two weeks after Ford said it was "matching F-150 Lightning production to customer demand" — shorthand for a scaleback in production of its flagship e-pickup.

But it appears that the Mach-E SUV is actually the vehicle facing bigger demand concerns, after losing half of its previous tax credit subsidies under the IRA at the start of this year.

Fig.1: The Mach-E was barely above the E-Transit in January

A precipitous drop-off in sales for the Mustang Mach-E was the main driver of January's lower numbers, with purchases of the vehicle falling by 73pc from December (see Fig.1).

Indeed, after making up three quarters of Ford's US BEV sales as recently as August, the Mach-E is now barely beating the E-Transit van, selling just 150 units more in January.

The Lightning was Ford's best-selling EV in January, comprising 48pc of Ford's EV sales in the period.


January is typically a relatively weak month for sales in the automotive industry. But the year-on-year decline is still worrying for Ford.

However the OEM may take some encouragement from the fact that, with the exception of October, its 2023 EV sales trended consistently upward after a slow January.

Fig. 3: Month-on-month change for Ford's EV sales

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Fleeting hope

"The biggest challenge for Ford and other OEMs is matching consumer demand with production, not in the overall solvency of the EV market, or even the potential near- to mid-term market opportunity," says Erin Petrey of consultancy Inspiration Mobility, adding that this was why fleet electrification was so important in accelerating adoption.

Fleet market demand is providing some hope for Ford's EV division, with a purchase of 1,000 Lightning and Mach-E models by food safety company Ecolab announced last week, which appears not to have made January's sales.

This is in addition to a recently announced commitment from the US Postal Service to purchase 9,250 E Transit vans through to the end of 2024.

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