(Recasts, adds Ford possible resumption date) May 11 (Reuters) - Ford Motor Co could resume production of its best-selling F-150 pickups as early as Friday, May 18 in Dearborn and Kansas City, according to a source familiar with the automaker's plans.
The F-150 has been the top selling USA vehicle by any manufacturer for more than 40 years.
The production downtime is tipped to affect Q2 profits at Ford, but the company hasn't changed its outlook for the year.
Meridian supplies several lightweight structural parts for the Ford trucks and utility vehicles, including an engine compartment reinforcement piece for the full-size F-series pickups.More news: West Ham v. Man United
Now, the Dearborn location is also closed.
"This is a fluid situation", Joe Hinrichs, president of global operations at Ford said in a statement on Wednesday. Ford sold 73,000 F-150s last month.
Earlier this week Ford temporarily laid off 7,600 workers after a May 2 fire at Meridian Magnesium Products in MI. Ford noted that while the F-150 and Super Duty trucks production is affected by the parts shortage, it had an 84-day supply of the vehicles on hand and that the supply should meet demand until production is back up and running.
All-new Ford 2015 F-150 pickup trucks move down the final inspection line at the Ford Rouge Center in Dearborn, Mich., on November 11, 2014. They will get most of but not all of their pay during the temporary layoff.