Growing Pile of Unfinished Ford Trucks Is Visible From Space Again

Last year, Ford stashed thousands of unfinished Super Duty trucks at Kentucky Speedway. It’s now happening again as the chip shortage drags on.

byCaleb Jacobs| UPDATED Aug 25, 2022 6:43 PM
Growing Pile of Unfinished Ford Trucks Is Visible From Space Again
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We saw the stockpile of chipless Ford Super Duty pickups grow immensely in 2021. At one point, there were so many of them at Kentucky Speedway that they could even be seen from space. As it turns out, that's once again the case in August of 2022. Ford eventually worked through the last batch and sent them on their way, though locals report that the same lots are filling back up. Satellite images dating from Aug. 16 to now support that claim.

These photos from the past week show dozens upon dozens of Fords being held at the speedway, about an hour away from the plant where the Super Duty is built. At present, there's still empty space in and around Kentucky Speedway's auxiliary lots, which certainly wasn't the case in May of last year. The situation may not be as dire now as it was then, which is a good thing, but there's still a large number of trucks in limbo.

I reached out to Ford to learn why these trucks are being stored in the first place, and a company spokesperson confirmed that they're waiting on chips, just like last year.

"The global semiconductor shortage continues to affect Ford’s North American plants—along with automakers and other industries around the world," the Ford spokesperson said. "Behind the scenes, we have teams working on maximizing production, with a continued commitment to building every high-demand vehicle for our customers with the quality they expect."

The above photos were taken by Pat Brindley Roeder, a resident of the area. This time, she says they're being driven to the speedway rather than delivered on a car hauler. If that's indeed the case, it's a 50-mile trip one way that will reflect on each truck's odometer.

Roeder noted that Ford is also storing unfinished Super Duties at an old ammunition factory in Charlestown, Indiana, which is about 25 minutes from the Super Duty plant. She sent these photos that show trucks in various trims, from Platinum F-350s to bare chassis cab F-550s.

Ford CEO Jim Farley has spoken about the chip shortage with a lot of hope, saying the automaker's supply has been steadying since its low point in 2021. That doesn't mean it's invincible to the supply chain shortages that every car company has faced for the better part of two years now. When you're trying to satisfy insatiable demand with limited components, you're bound to run into issues.

Thankfully, Ford isn't having to ward off thieves in Kentucky and Indiana like it is in its home state of Michigan. More than $1 million worth of F-150 Raptors have been taken from storage lots near the automaker's Dearborn headquarters, resulting in multiple high-speed pursuits. When it's this hard to finish trucks in the first place, that's just pouring salt in the wound.

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