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A million new customers is the five year target for Ford

Ford has upscaled its new model plans and is now planning 25 additions or replacements in the next five years instead of the 15 it announced just over a year ago.

The company will also continue to invest in new technology, particularly in relation to connectivity aimed at improving safety and easing traffic congestion.

Ford has been racking up £1 billion-a-year losses in Europe during the recession as it battles over-capacity in its plants. But rather than pull up the drawbridge it has accelerated investment in product and technology, says European executive vice-president Stephen Odell.

"The plan was not about surviving - it was about growing the business profitably," he added. "We have just had 10 straight months of retail growth and we are on track to return to profitability by 2015. We see modest growth in Europe next year and a market that could increase by 20% over the next five years."

With the closure of the Genk factory in Belgium, which makes the Mondeo, and the Southampton commercial vehicle factory in the UK, Ford will have reduced European capacity by 18% by the middle of 2014.

"This has been a historically challenging period," said executive chairman Bill Ford. "I remember the challenges we faced in North America. The turnaround in Europe will be every bit as gratifying."

The product offensive will begin with the arrival of a small SUV, the EcoSport, within a matter of weeks. Next year Ford will introduce overdue replacements for the Mondeo and Mondeo estate. In 2015 there will be a new Ka and two models from America offered in Europe for the first time - the Edge, a large SUV, and the iconic Mustang in coupe and convertible form. Ford has also promised to expand its ST range of high-performance cars.

New commercial vehicles will include an expansion of the Transit range with the Courier and two-tonne versions, both in 2014.

"With this line-up we expect to win over one million new customers over the next five years," said the company's executive vice-president of global marketing, Jim Farley.

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