On Thursday, Ford Motor Co announced plans to shore up its finances in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, hoping to produce more cash by restarting next month's production amid the ongoing health crisis.
Ford shut down all of North American operations last week as the coronavirus intensified. The firm had said earlier, as previously expected, that it would not restart in late March.
The auto giant intends to restart production at its Hermosillo Assembly Plant in Mexico on April 6 which assembles Ford Fusion and Lincoln MKZ models.
The automaker would then move to reopen Kentucky Truck Plant on April 14, in addition to its Dearborn Truck Plant, the transit line for Kansas City Assembly Plant and the Ohio Assembly Plant.
Ford revealed moves to "tighten the belt" by temporarily cutting wages for top executives. It came a day after Standard & Poor's downgraded to "junk" the status of the Dearborn, Michigan-based corporation and cautioned that further downgrades could be in the offing.
"Ford plans to restart production at selected North American plants as early as April 6, putting key plants back online as the company is implementing new safety measures to protect returning employees," Galhotra said in a statement.
In a press release, Kumar Galhotra, North America's Ford president, said said they will continue to monitor the conditions of public health as well as the readiness of suppliers and will change plans if necessary. The coronavirus pandemic that killed more than 21,000 people worldwide has forced the closure of car plants worldwide.
The U.S. Senate passed a $2 trillion economic stimulus plan on Wednesday to aid unemployed people and industries, including the car industry, hit hard by the outbreak.
US President Donald Trump, concerned about the economic implications of a prolonged shutdown, said he wanted America to return to its normal life by Easter, or April 12.
Dearborn Truck and Kentucky Truck both produce the iconic Ford pickups and Kansas City Assembly is responsible for the top-selling commercial Transit van.
Ford's stock was downgraded by S&P Global on Wednesday to a BB+ ranking, which indicated a major credit risk for investors. After revealing plans to reopen Thursday, the stock price in afternoon trading hit as high as $5.35, from its previous closing at $4.95.
Ford also took more steps to save cash, revealing that its top 300 executives would delay 20 percent to 50 percent of compensation for at least five months beginning on May 1, with the executive chairman deferring 50 percent of his pay.