Ford is selling Explorer SUVs with missing features
Yes, it’s the chip shortage, again.
The ongoing chip shortage has meant that Ford is now selling its Explorer range without some of its famed creature comforts.
According to Automotive News, Ford Explorers will be sold to customers without features like rear air conditioning or heating controls. The automaker promises it will supply the chips needed within a year, so dealers can retrofit them.
For those soon-to-be Ford owners, you’ll still have A/C and heating in the back seats. The thing missing will be the ability for your rear passengers to tweak their climate control to their liking. You’ll still be able to control it for them from your comfortable, heated front seat.
Ford also says that none of the missing chips are safety-critical, so your Explorer will still drive just the same.
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The ongoing chip shortages have hit Ford hard. Last year, it had to halt production on multiple lines. Ford also had plans to ship undrivable but mostly completed, vehicles to dealerships, where they could wait on the lot until chips were available.
It seems that the automaker found a way to make drivable, and more importantly, sellable vehicles. Ford’s Michigan Assembly Plant parking lots are full of partly-built vehicles.
Not that Ford is alone, the entire auto industry is paring back features as the chip shortage continues.
Tesla has been shipping vehicles without USB ports, Toyota, Nissan, and Stellantis have all reduced production targets or temporarily closed plants; BMW sent out some cars without infotainment touchscreens, and the new Cadillac Escalade made it onto lots, but without GM’s Super Cruise driving aid.
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