Ford’s market share has gradually dropped in the last three years due to a conscious decision to focus on longer-cycle business, said Ford of Britain chairman and managing director Mark Ovenden (pictured) at the Geneva Motor Show yesterday.
This focus on retail, net-fleet and motability, was to avoid providing so many short-cycle cars in the market, with an aim of strengthening residual values.
Ford defines short-cycle business as rental, demo cars and company service vehicles – this market is currently at around 10% for Ford, but Ovenden stressed that some manufacturers are up in the 40s.
Ovenden said: “We aren’t all about volume at Ford. We have made a conscious effort to strengthen our brand and our models’ residual values, over the last three years, and while overall share has gone down, our retail share has progressively gone up.
“Another reason we wanted to manage the amount of rental volume we do is that personal contract purchase (PCP) only works if we keep the residual values up. And with over 80% of our retail purchases being on PCP; if residuals start falling then the cost of change will become an issue.
“2014 in particular was a fantastic year for Ford in Britain – dealers had one of their strongest profit for years. This year should be just as exciting for them, with the new Focus, new Mondeo, new C-Max, new Mustang, new Vignale and, of course, the new Edge that comes out towards the end of the year – we have consistent new product throughout 2015.
“Dealers should also excited about a new strategy we are working on with them around older cars. This includes the launch of Ford Approved, Ford Blue Service, Transit24 and the launch of the Motorcraft brand – these are all strong initiatives where our dealers are able to make money.”