Sales of the Ford Explorer continue to slump, increasing worries that the Ford Hazelwood plant could close. The Explorer remains the most popular Sport Utility Vehicle, but sales have steadily fallen since 2002. Ford now projects it will sell about 230,000 Explorers this year, the lowest annual sales level since 1990. Hazelwood builds Explorers, but so does a plant at Louisville, Kentucky. Ford has announced it will be closing plants to save money and the company could consolidate Explorer production at Louisville. The Hazelwood plant has been idled for 10 weeks, because of excess inventories. Ford sold as many as 400,000 Explorers a year at the height of the vehicle’s popularity.
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