Truck sales have been a bright spot for many manufacturers over the last few years, and especially important for Ford, where full-size trucks are estimated to account for as much as 90 percent of company profits. Although the half-ton 2015 F-150 has been stealing the spotlight lately for its revolutionary aluminum body and new powertrains, its big brother Super Duty remains a critical component of Ford's overall truck strategy, and demand is as strong as ever for the heavier-duty models. To help meet demand, Ford is investing $80 million in its Kentucky Truck plant in Louisville.
The investment includes retooling, facility upgrades, and automation improvements in the paint and body shops. The upgrades will enable the plant to meet its goal of a volume increase of 15 percent to better meet customer demand. On the horizon for the plant is an updated 2015 Super Duty model with the second-generation of Ford's 6.7-liter "Scorpion" Power Stroke V-8 with a revised turbocharger system, promising horsepower and torque outputs above today's 400 hp and 800 lb-ft.
In addition to the Super Duty line, Kentucky Truck also builds the Ford Expedition and Lincoln Navigator SUVs, which are getting significantly updated for 2015, now offering the 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6 as standard on the Navigator.