Ford Running Low on Blue Ovals

Supply chain hiccups are affecting Ford’s brand name — literally.

Ford Motor Company, like the rest of the global auto industry, has been dealing with problems in the automotive supply chain for more than two years now.

First, it was computer chips, when electronics companies decided it would be better to allocate chips for work-from-home technologies than for cars during COVID lockdowns.

The problems subsequently expanded to other parts — so much so that Ford recently disclosed that it has made some 45,000 vehicles with parts missing.

Some of those to-be-completed vehicles, it turns out, could be missing Ford’s brand name — literally.

The Wall Street Journal reports that Ford has delayed deliveries of some vehicles because the company ran low on the ubiquitous blue oval logos that adorn most Ford vehicles.

People familiar with the matter told the paper that the issue impacted Ford badges as well as vehicle model name plates, particularly for its best-selling, highly profitable F-Series pickups.

The report also noted that a company that has produced Ford logos in the past, Tribar Technologies of Howell, Michigan, was forced to reduce its operations last month after it reported discharging industrial chemicals into local sewers.

Both Ford and Tribar did not comment about whether the issues were related; Tribar told the Journal that wastewater systems captured the chemicals before they reached a local waterway, and that it is back up and running at full capacity.

Ford, meanwhile, weighed other potential solutions. The company reportedly considered 3D-printing the badges before officials ultimately decided against it amid concerns about their quality.

For now, the company said it is retrofitting vehicles that are missing the logos before delivering them to dealers.

Ford last week also announced a reshuffling of its executive team, including its supply chain operations. CFO John Lawler will begin reworking the automaker’s supply lines until it hires a new executive to lead the supply chain.

More in Video