By on April 25, 2018

2019 Ford Fusion

You like Fusions, Foci, and Fiestas? Well, you better get to shopping. Pretty soon, Ford’s car lineup will be down to just two – the Mustang and the upcoming Focus Active.

Yes, you read that correctly.

The Blue Oval automaker is going all in on trucks and crossovers, as well as electrified vehicles, as it plans to remake three-fourths of its lineup by 2020. This all comes from a Q1 earnings report.

Not only will 75 percent of the lineup turnover, but four new trucks and SUVs will be added. Ford will start a rollout of battery-electric vehicles in 2020 with the goal of having six on the market by 2022.

It also appears that hybrid versions of the F-150, Mustang, Escape, and upcoming Bronco will be available.

The biggest news, of course, is the shift to a lineup that’s almost exclusively made up of crossovers, SUVs, and trucks. Ford did also say it’s exploring what it calls “white space” vehicles – vehicles that would combine a higher ride height with larger cargo areas – sort of like crossovers do now. We’d imagine that the company is thinking of hatchback-type vehicles here.

Ford is doing this because it estimates that 50 percent of American retail sales will be SUVs by 2020. It’s also reallocating $7 billion of capital investment from cars to SUVs.

To be clear, the automaker’s upcoming BEVs and hybrids may actually not be crossovers — they may be what we’d call “cars.” There could even be a mid-size hybrid or BEV sedan. But it appears that gasoline-fueled sedans are dead going forward.

Ford also unveiled a new driver-assist package in the vein of Toyota’s Safety Sense system and mentioned (in vague PR terms) initiatives to speed up product-development cycles.

Okay, now that the objective facts are out of the way, it’s time for the editorializing. To this news, we say: What the $#%*, Ford?

2017 Ford Focus - Image: Ford

Yes, we know. The crossover craze can’t stop, won’t stop. Mid-size sedans are in trouble. We’ve covered it extensively on TTAC. But this seems insane. The market for sedans may be shrinking, but it’s not zero nor does it seem likely it ever will be.

The Mustang survives, of course, because it’s an icon, and it remains popular. There might be riots in Dearborn if it was to be cancelled.

But this news means no more Fusion, Fiesta, or Focus. Essentially, Ford will no longer be a full-line automaker. It’s ceding space in key segments (shrinking segments, but still key) to the competition, and it’s also taking a risk – if the crossover craze abates for whatever reason, the Dearborn folks will have no sedans to show.

Maybe the bean counters and internal sales analysts are right, and Ford will benefit from this move. But we’re shocked and saddened over here – Ford’s current mix of sedans and hatchbacks is quite good. Not to mention we don’t want to be doomed to a future where the only choice is crossover A or crossover B.

We’ve reached out to Ford and will update if we hear back. UPDATE: A Ford spokesman provided us with this statement, which is similar to what’s in the report: “Consumer buying habits are shifting from small cars to small SUVs – here and around the world. To respond to the needs of our customers and grow our business, we are significantly expanding our North America utility portfolio while also exploring new “white space” vehicle silhouettes that combine the best attributes of cars and utilities – such as higher ride height, space and versatility.”

[Images: Ford]

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222 Comments on “Ford Crossover Company? Report Says Ford to Swap Cars for CUVs [UPDATED]...”


  • avatar
    SC5door

    D- Platform Taurus passes on in March of 2019.

    Aviator and Explorer will be available as Hybrid models as well.

    • 0 avatar
      xtoyota

      Sedans will sell but design them for easy entrance and egress ….. plus make them so you can see out of them …. :=)

      • 0 avatar
        Lorenzo

        Also higher off the ground with optional AWD. Otherwise, you’ll be buying a station wagon. If they’re smart, they design them for a quick mod back to sedans, but more old fashioned ones with headroom and a 3-box overall look, elements their wind tunnel tests eliminated. The 1/2 mpg advantage will be lost, but on the bright side, there will be room to re-incorporate full body styling, instead of ever more garish front end clip design, the only distinction modern wind tunnel cars will allow.

  • avatar
    ajla

    Ford’s car lineup will be down to just two – the Mustang and the upcoming Focus Active.”

    Not to blow my own horn, but I called this exact thing awhile ago. Focus, Mustang, and some EV as the only Ford “cars” by 2020.

  • avatar
    pdieten

    Apparently people looking for a midsize sedan buy either an Accord or a Camry. Maybe they think the market doesn’t need any other choices.

    • 0 avatar
      nvinen

      I sold my V6 Accord (good car) for a Ford sedan, which I prefer.

      Good thing I’m planning to hold on to the Ford sedan for a long time I guess since they won’t have anything to interest me soon…

      Is losing loyal customers really worth it? If I’m not interested in their sedans for myself I’m probably not going to look at their SUVs for my wife either.

      • 0 avatar
        brn

        Yep, I don’t get it myself. I much prefer the Fusion to the Camry or Accord (or Malibu or Altima or whatever).

        I get that crossovers are becoming more and more car like (some are simply hatchbacks), but I’m still disappointed that Ford will fall off my list when shopping for my next sedan.

    • 0 avatar
      phila_DLJ

      …And if they can’t afford either of those, they buy an Altima or Sonata.

    • 0 avatar
      Jacob

      That’s because decade after decade, generation after generation, Toyota Honda Hyundai and others kept improving their sedans. The big 2.5 on the other hand, seemingly ignore this segment for a decade starting in the 1990s, which is followed by frantic attempt to make good cars again around the time of GM’s bankruptcy. The same story is being repeated right now. If Ford wanted to sell more sedans they should have been working already on the next generation Focus and Fusion, but they don’t. This sort of thinking is going to get them into trouble again.

  • avatar
    Fighter835

    Very short-sighted of them. If they can’t make a profit selling 200k+ Fusions a year, there is something very, very wrong at Ford.

    • 0 avatar
      sjd

      Yeah but are they only selling that many because of the large amounts of cash on the hood?

    • 0 avatar
      brn

      They can make a profit selling 200K Fusions a year, but they can make more of a profit if they focus on CUVs.

      Not saying I agree with the path, but the [short term] logic is there.

      • 0 avatar
        thornmark

        Ford loses money on the Fusion – it’s a fleet car and wasn’t as good as the last Accord and certainly way behind the new Accord.

        Ford made a financial decision, it can’t compete in the mid size segment and really hasn’t done well there since the original Taurus.

        • 0 avatar
          gmichaelj

          1. Ford loses money on China too ($200 million in 1st Qtr 18), so on pace to lose

          $0.8 Billion this year.

          At what point do you pull the plug on money losing operations?

          2. 200K US units in last 12 months, and they can’t make any money on this model?

          I know that no one outside of Ford has the numbers on this, but the variable costs are probably 2/3rds of the price of the car. (Source Autoline reports over the years)

          Seems like approx. $10 grand per car could cover a lot of shared overhead with Mondeos and other vehicles that share the platform/parts.

          3. Ford BOD is running scared – afraid of Wall Street and Unsure of product – See very late to the market on Ranger/Expedition/Navigator for “Fails”

        • 0 avatar
          danio3834

          It’s very likely that most major makers, the ones that can’t command top dollars and volume of their small/mid cars, lose money on them in NAFTA.

          Even the top companies in the segment are going hard into EPA classified “trucks” because they have little choice. It’s cheaper to get them over the CAFE bar and not making the target will cost them even more soon.

          • 0 avatar
            gmichaelj

            So I guess I have to come to the conclusion that Ford Management has given up on “winning” with Cars.

            From the Company’s presentation: “Committed to returning EBIT margin to 10% through fitness and making smart choices to play where the company can win”

            There is only so much space on dealers’ lots and it doesn’t help Ford’s EBIT profitability to sell a vehicle (Fusion/Fiesta) that is not as profitable as a CUV/SUV

            If this move to CUV/SUV is worldwide, then it will work out for them – there will be no economies of scale for cars.

          • 0 avatar

            I think this is it. Slightly profitable vehicles will no longer be acceptable. The stock market realities demands higher returns. This also seems to indicate market share matters less to investors then profit per vehicle which is somewhat evidenced by GM’s stock price over Fords.

    • 0 avatar
      ajla

      The NYT reported yesterday that Ford **loses money** on the Fusion, Fiesta, and Focus.

      nytimes.com/2018/04/24/business/ford-hackett.html

      Although that was from anonymous “sources within the company” so take it for what it is worth.

      • 0 avatar
        30-mile fetch

        I’m no financial analyst, but I suspected as much from various news stories over the years that mentioned F-series derived profits and total company profits. There didn’t seem to be a lot of headspace between those figures.

    • 0 avatar
      jkross22

      Short sighted? The numbers don’t lie. If those cars were profitable enough, they’d keep making ’em.

  • avatar
    30-mile fetch

    The Fusion will be missed, that was a good one. What a world wherein 200K annual US sales cannot spare a model for continued production. But hey, let’s here more about the EcoSport. Any hope of a plug-in EV for that little darling?

    In an odd twist, Toyota has now been inadvertently nudged closer to enthusiast tastes by renewing three V6-powered sedans. If only enthusiasts would swallow their pride and *embrace the face*.

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    Well, everyone said so but I refused to believe it. Now I guess it’s official.

    I suppose we’ll see how this works for them. For their sake, I sure hope their new slate of “white space vehicle silhouettes” aren’t as awful as the Ecosport is.

    I suspect there’s more to this story than meets the eye, though. I bet you there’s some kind of deal with a Chinese company to make cars. Calling it now.

    • 0 avatar
      thegamper

      I think the markets wholesale move to crossovers will take at least some of the wind out of profits for this move. If everyone is offering a slew of crossovers, it’s bound to eat into margins and result in incentives to move metal.

      I am saddened, but not surprised by Ford. American automakers have been Truck/SUV companies who also happen to sell cars for a while now. I still think it’s a mistake not to offer a midsized sedan at a minimum, even if taking small loss per unit. This move only strengthens your competitors.

      This also validates my theory that the increased popularity (and massive size) of trucks and SUVs would snowball because they are so offensive to driver’s of smaller vehicles (i.e. make driving less enjoyable, more difficult) that sedan/small vehicle drivers would have no choice but to abandon their cars if they ever want to see the road ahead of them again. So thanks pickup trucks for ruining it for the rest of us.

      I also think this trend is destined to spawn a new type of vehicle. When everyone is driving a truck, there will be demand for something bigger….taller, to see around and over the sea of farm equipment clogging our roadways.

    • 0 avatar
      Chocolatedeath

      You might be right Mike. I also think they have some secret with China. Just when you think they wont have a sedan they will import it, Focus and Fusion.

    • 0 avatar
      xtoyota

      What happens to Ford when gas hits $5-6 a gallon … you know it will happen.

      • 0 avatar
        FreedMike

        I don’t think that alone will hurt them; vehicles of all kinds are more efficient nowadays, and there’s always the fallback of hybridization.

        I’d say an economic downturn would be more harmful. In many ways, the CUV craze is happening because the economy’s been on an upswing for a long time now – people have more money to spend, and they’re spending it on larger vehicles. Makes sense.

        But I think a gas spike PLUS an economic downturn would send people back into cars in a big way.

  • avatar
    slavuta

    Dear Ford,

    thank you! Toyota will now sell 20K more Camrys on your behave.

    Lovely customers

  • avatar
    genuineleather

    As I understand it, Ford won’t be “investing” in sedans going forward; however, I can see the current Fusion continuing on for quite some time with minor updates (a la Crown Victoria). The development costs are sunk, and Fusion just got a facelift for ’19, so assuming Hermosillo can be (profitably) run at a reduced number of annual units, I see no reason not to maintain the current model for fleets, tightwads, and traditionalists.

    • 0 avatar
      gmichaelj

      Agreed, I think TTAC is wrong here, or at least has jumped the gun.

      If they are going to sell Mondeo/Fusion worldwide, why give up 100k US units? (if it falls that low) – currently 200k US units

      I wonder what the costs of making a vehicle you are already making for overseas markets pass US safety/environmental regs is? How many units would you have to sell to cover that? I’m thinking specifically of the Ranger, which looks pretty darn similar to what they’ve been selling. EcoSport too.

      • 0 avatar
        gmichaelj

        well then i saw this:

        media.ford.com/content/dam/fordmedia/North%20America/US/2018/04/25/1q18-financials.pdf

        so I guess I am wrong – since they specifically left Fusion off the list.

    • 0 avatar
      ajla

      The Panthers were still profitable at fleet-level pricing and volume. The Fusion apparently isn’t.

    • 0 avatar
      George B

      genuineleather, this would make more sense. Hard to imagine that Ford can’t make money on >100k Fusions a year for several more years with the development costs already paid. The Fusion starts out as a 200k/year class-competitive model, not a last choice model. Government agencies almost never buy foreign brands so simply being among the last domestic sedans has to be worth something in fleet sales.

  • avatar
    pmirp1

    This only shows the genius of Sergio. Of-course when you sell defective dual clutch automatics for Focus and Fiesta, or a old platform Volvo 500/Taurus, or a Mexican built midsize Fusion inferior in every way to king Camry, this is what you get.

    Ford is a truck company, not much more. Hopefully they can take care of Mustang, but hearing they may stamp Mach-1 name on a CUV tells me how clueless they are.

    • 0 avatar
      thornmark

      Camry is a fleet/discount model too.

      It wins no reviews against the Accord and only outsells the Accord because of fleet sales – the Accord wins with actual retail buyers.

      • 0 avatar
        30-mile fetch

        So can I now apply the favorite “McDonald’s sells a million Big Macs too” trope to the Accord?

        Keeping with the food theme, if you view the Camry fleet percentage as menu items offered by a successful catering business, I think you come away with a different perspective.

        • 0 avatar
          pmirp1

          30-mile fetch, King Camry is built here in America. It doesn’t need to go to Mexico to save dimes because people buy it(where Fusion is built). People have bought it in volume and made it number 1 for years. That is what counts.

          Your hamburger analogy fails because those other custom hamburgers are not made in Mexico. They are also made here.

          You hamburger analogy also fails because those custom burgers use better ingredients. If you think a Ford Fusion uses better ingredients than a Camry you are joking. Camrys are reliable. They are not fun, but they are reliable, which is why they are number 1.

          You talk fleet, all the while forgetting how Camry has been number 1 for so many years, and employs so many Americans in Kentucky. Again Camrys are number 1 because they are reliable.

          As for Accord, I take a Camry with a real transmission and the six cylinder engine over that puffed up Civic with a CVT and a turbo any day.

          • 0 avatar
            gtem

            I think you missed 30 mile’s point entirely, he’s obviously quite Camry-sympathetic and recently bought a ’16 XSE.

            I like the Fusion (and would seriously entertain buying a highly discounted Fusion Sport) but the Mexican assembly kind of makes it a non-starter for me. Not because I think they’re worse made than an American one, but the fact that the Camry is VERY American made and supports a lot of families here in the US both at the massive Georgetown plant itself but also the many suppliers that have set up shop across KY and Indiana and elsewhere. When I replaced the rear hub assembly on my wife’s 2012 after she curbed it, it was a Timken box with an OE Aisin part inside made in Seymour Indiana. I thought that was neat. I do some vacationing in Central KY and get to see Toyota’s footprint all over the place in small towns making headlights and other sub-assemblies.

          • 0 avatar
            30-mile fetch

            pmirp1, you really did miss the point. Perhaps you don’t spend any time reading car enthusiast comment threads. Which is a credit to your character, honestly, and one which I wish I had.

            gtem: “he’s obviously quite Camry-sympathetic”

            You. Take. That. Back.

            You’re going to give me a reputation around here.

          • 0 avatar

            I had an all-day field trip to the Georgetown plant in high school, since it was just about an hour and a half from where I lived in Indiana.

            Fascinating, best field trip I ever had. Got some sweet branded safety goggles as well.

          • 0 avatar
            gtem

            Let the big “T” flag high, 30 mile!

            I’m open about my biases and preferences, I’d like to think I came to have them from pretty rational reasoning and experiences. When Toyota makes a ugly car or cheap interior or builds US-bound cars or trucks in Mexico, I have no problem bashing them for it. There are many other new/used cars that I’ve enjoyed driving or would seriously consider the purchase of, and have even dipped my feet into serial domestic ownership now with my old Rangers. But at the end of the day I’m a Toyota man. Unfortunately there’s currently plenty for me to gripe about with their new products outside of the 4Runner (and even that with its thin sheetmetal and weak paint I moan about).

      • 0 avatar
        pmirp1

        thornmark, King Camry is number 1, and has been number 1 car in America for way too many years. I think there was a year in there that Accord was number 1, but outside that, they have been number 1 for too many years to remember.

        People buy king Camry not because it is fun. Because it is reliable and lasts.

        Go ahead, read the enthusiast sites. They are also the same sites that kept saying good things about Fusion driving dynamics and handling and good looks. Accord lost the plot with this generation. They have a CVT engine. That is a problem waiting to happen. They have turbos instead of naturally aspirated V6 and V4s. Again dependability issues waiting to happen. Accord is a bigger Civic now.

        Buy the Camry. Support American workers (not Ford executives and shareholders who allow Fusion to be build in Mexico). At least Accord is built in Ohio, so I am still supportive of it, but it is not long lasting any more.

    • 0 avatar

      Sergio is no genius. He has put both Chrysler and Fiat into last place in all the reliability surveys. What is a bigger pile of crap FCA or Ford?

      • 0 avatar
        pmirp1

        akear, Fiat Chrysler is making money, and if you know what to buy from them you get great stuff.

        Here is what you can reliably buy from them: Challenger, Charger, Grand Cherokee, Wrangler, minivans, RAMs, Durangos, 300s, Cherokee with the 3.2 liter engine.

        Here is what you should not buy from them: Compass, Renegade, Cherokee with the Tiger Shark, any Fiat, any Alfa, any Maserati.

        Ferrari is a different animal.

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      Sergio’s no genius – he’s lucky. After their sedans bombed, I don’t think they had much choice but to bet that trucks and CUVs would be the way to go. It’s all they had, after all.

      FCA’s lucky as hell that a) gas prices stayed stable, and b) the economy didn’t contract. If either had happened, then it’d have been a major problem; if both happened, then it’d have been fatal.

      I’m sure Marchionne loves the idea that people think of him as a genius, but he knows better.

      • 0 avatar
        pmirp1

        30-mile fetch, your analogy of hamburgers to cars is neither funny nor correct. I pointed it out to you and you and your little bro gtem don’t get it.

        • 0 avatar
          30-mile fetch

          Are you an actual human being, pmirp? And/or have you had a real conversation with an actual human being? You’re missing a lot of social cues. They’re just bouncing right off like a brick wall.

          And in the brotherhood of Yota Uber Alles, Gtem’s my BIG bro, by the way.

      • 0 avatar
        pmirp1

        FreedMike, after 200 and Dart tanked, what were his options? Most other car companies would try to redesign and reinvent. Sergio saw the writing on the wall sooner than his peers.

        It is no different that when he smartly fished for Chrysler after great recession, and using Jeep sales supported his other Italian brands.

        That is all mark of a genius, but if you can’t see it, i can’t help you.

        • 0 avatar
          FreedMike

          Exactly…he had no options. Marchionne had to sell what he had. It’s lucky for him that the market was there for it. If economic conditions had been different, the story might have been very, very different.

          It’s not unknown for auto executives to completely misread the market, you know…cough…cough…Cadillac…

          As my dad said – I’d rather be lucky than good any day.

  • avatar
    sjd

    More trucks! Just in time for $100 a barrel oil.

  • avatar
    Oberkanone

    Fantastic news for everyone who stay’s in the game. Ford is only selling 200K to 300K Fusion per year from 2015-2017. Sonata, Camry, Malibu, Accord, Legacy, Optima, and others will all appreciate a few more buyers for their wares.

    • 0 avatar
      gottacook

      If the result were that the Legacy wagon were canceled and the Legacy wagon reinstated, I wouldn’t mind a bit.

    • 0 avatar
      mike978

      Should help Mazda, since the Fusion was considered a stylish and good driving car – just like the 6.

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      I’m not so sure about that.

      I’m reminded of the scene in Jurassic Park in which all the animals are running in the same direction. It’s because they are being chased by a T-Rex.

      Chrysler gets a pass because they are eccentric. But Ford’s departure from the sedan market is very high profile, and it exposes the fragility of the segment.

      Accord and Camry have similar costs and margins as Fusion. I wouldn’t be surprised if we see Honda or Toyota start to back away from the sedan segment as well. All they need is a nudge like this.

      • 0 avatar
        Chocolatedeath

        SCE. IMO there will be several others back away before Honda and Toyota decide too.

        • 0 avatar

          I think in the case Honda an Toyota will stock it out the longest. These are essentially the products they are known for. They will pick up some buyers from the others dropping out but not all of them for sure. Most will likely go to crossovers.

      • 0 avatar
        WheelMcCoy

        ” I wouldn’t be surprised if we see Honda or Toyota start to back away from the sedan segment as well.”

        Acura seems like the closer parallel to Ford, although I doubt they will go that route. Acura’s CUVs and SUVs sell pretty well whereas their sedans do relatively poorly. The TLX probably can be saved though. Kill the ILX and RLX; few will miss them.

  • avatar
    SunnyvaleCA

    >>> Fusions, Foci, and Fiestas <<<

    Shouldn't that be "Fiestae" if you're keeping with the Latin plural on Latin-like names?

    As far as car/truck mix, don't forget the implications of manufacturing in China. This is going to push domestic manufacturers to light trucks, since cars aren't protected by the "chicken tax."

    There's also a chance that after 2020 elections the EPA will resume forging ahead with high CAFE standards, which should push people towards light-trucks with inflated wheelbase and away from cars.

  • avatar
    Advance_92

    Where will this leave Lincoln? Will their only car be the Continental?

  • avatar
    brn

    TTAC, I’m not saying your wrong, but can we have the source for this? Over the last several months, we’ve been getting mixed signals. If we’re stating this with certainty, it needs backing.

    • 0 avatar
      ajla

      media.ford.com/content/dam/fordmedia/North%20America/US/2018/04/25/1q18-financials.pdf

      Under “Building a Winning Portfolio”

      This isn’t media speculation. It was announced by Ford during their earnings reporting today.

    • 0 avatar
      Tim Healey

      Sorry, I should’ve linked the PDF — was in a hurry to post while the news was hot. That’s on me. Another journalist’s tweet caught our eye and from there I got to the PDF. Sorry it wasn’t clear — I did mention the Q1 report in the post, but should’ve linked it.

  • avatar
    sirwired

    Really, the sedan form-factor never made sense. The wagon/hatchback has always been superior.

    CUVs are an evolution of that design, providing minor reductions in economy (which nobody cares about with cheap gas) and handling (but to a degree which 90+% of buyers will never notice), and giving consumers greater ride height and a higher seating position and the styling they apparently prefer.

    As far as design compromises go, it’s not a terrible one.

  • avatar
    TTACFanatic

    Can they still sell CUV’s at a premium if its the only thing they sell?

    When the “shame” of the the more affordable sedan platform mate is gone, a showroom of $25-30K (sub)compact crossovers is going to need some cash on the hood to gets butts in the seats.

    • 0 avatar
      sjd

      This is my issue. It’s insane how much more expensive a CUV is than a sedan when similarly equipped. We’re talking thousands of dollars.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      The cost structure is better AND they typically transact higher. That’s a 1-2 punch to sedans. If they can take a Fusion AWD, give it some ride height and specific approach and departure angles while getting similar fuel mileage, it has a lower CAFE standard to hit thus less fines and/or investment in money losing tech is required.

  • avatar

    All other things being equal, a bigger car will sell over the smaller car. A CUV or car has the same equipment and the difference in materials is trivial. Four tires, one HVAC, some ICE….done.

    Once the size embargo was broken by the ” whatever Utility Vehicle”, it’s not going back. If you have money, there’s a nice Q5 or Q7 for you. If not as much, a Nissan Rogue or Honda HR-V. Both are bigger than the car you’d otherwise buy at that price point….

    In Europe, it’s different. Here, the Wal Mart parking spaces can hold a crew cab pickup. Unless you live in a City, you have zero need for small.

    • 0 avatar
      sjd

      I far prefer my 2018 Fit over an HR-V. It was a couple grand cheaper, is way more fun to drive and gets better fuel economy. I only looked at FWD 6MT models. The HR-V isn’t that much bigger either.

  • avatar
    AK

    As someone who owns a Ford (ST), good.

    Eliminate all your cars so I won’t be tempted to buy another one and deal with your trashy build quality and horrendous customer service.

  • avatar
    RocketScience

    Have you been to a BMW dealer lot lately? It’s 3:1 SUVs! Me thinks they need to change their ‘The Ultimate Driving Machine’ tagline…

    I don’t like it, but Ford is just chasing the market.

    • 0 avatar
      Len_A

      Exactly, and the Mercedes, and Infiniti dealers aren’t much different.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      As a long BMW enthusiast once told me, someone who started buying BMW products in the seventies, “They don’t make them like they used to.”

      Some people believe that it all when downhill when the Turks started assembling them in Germany; and it’s only gone downhill after that.

  • avatar
    Mike-NB

    This is terrible news for all car enthusiasts whether we like or dislike Ford. I’m solidly in the ‘like’ category. But over the past few years it’s become more and more obvious on my daily commute that cars are dying. I can sit at a red light in my MKZ surrounded by F150s, RAMs, Silverados and all manner of SUVs. I’ve seen times when I’m the only car in sight with nothing but trucks and SUVs around me.

    This was predictable. Unfortunately it’s apt to happen with other manufacturers too.

    • 0 avatar
      mike978

      Will the Focus come here since last month it was stated a Chinese built version would. Or is that the Active version only?

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      “This is terrible news for all car enthusiasts whether we like or dislike Ford.”

      No it’s not. Ford only has one good product: the Ford line of F-series trucks. The rest is schit.

      The Mustang runs a distant third behind GM and Fiatsler entries. Not exactly a money-making cash cow, like their trucks.

      If Ford sedans did all that well in the real world, they wouldn’t be losing a little on each sale and hope to make it up in volume.

      Nope. Dropping them like hot potatoes is the way to go for Ford.

      • 0 avatar
        IHateCars

        “The Mustang runs a distant third behind GM and Fiatsler entries.”

        2017 YTD sales:

        “Ford sold 81,866 Mustangs, Chevy moved 67,940 Camaros and Dodge hawked 64,537 Challengers”

        https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/cars/2017/12/29/ford-mustang-vs-chevrolet-camaro-leads-top-7-auto-sales-battles/985698001/

  • avatar
    hpycamper

    Very short sighted. Other companies are able to profit from cars, but not Ford? New management is what’s really needed.

    • 0 avatar
      sjd

      The thing is that most people go to Honda or Toyota for cars. So they are concentrating on their strengths.

      • 0 avatar
        mike978

        Subaru and Mazda make money on their world sedans. I suppose the Mondeo wasn’t doing well in Europe and Ford needed volume in Europe to help pay for the Fusion development.

      • 0 avatar

        Toyota produces both higher quality cars, trucks, and SUVs than Ford. The Ford Edge just finished at the bottom of the pack in a recent crash test. In future all Ford will offer us is their Trucks and unsafe SUVs.

      • 0 avatar
        hpycamper

        Ford used to own the mid size car market with the early Taurus. Now they can’t compete with Toyota and Honda? Solid evidence of bad management.

        • 0 avatar
          highdesertcat

          Solid evidence that buyers prefer the reliability of Toyota and Honda appliances, in spite of the fact that both Toyota and Honda products were much better when they were importing them from Japan.

    • 0 avatar
      Len_A

      When police departments buy slightly more Explorer based Police Interceptor Utilities than Taurus based Police Interceptor sedans, and do it at a higher purchase price, that should clue everyone in that there’s nothing short sighted about it – it’s the direction the market in the USA & Canada is going for all manufacturers.

      • 0 avatar
        SC5door

        Uh what?

        Slightly more?

        Jan, Feb, and March of 2018 they have sold 8,763 Interceptor Utilities, while selling 1,870 sedans.

        • 0 avatar
          Len_A

          I was comparing all of last years numbers. First quarter of this year is, as you pointed out, even more telling.

          • 0 avatar
            SC5door

            2017:

            Utility–33,075
            Sedan–7,994

            2016:

            Utility–32,213
            Sedan—9,472

            2015:

            Utility–24,942
            Sedan–9,765

            2014:

            Utility–20,655
            Sedan–10,234

            Please do tell, again, where it’s “slightly more”? The Utility has slaughtered the sedan in sales in the United States. Less than 20% of the volume running at the plant is for Taurus and you certainly don’t see many interceptor sedans running down the line.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      “Other companies are able to profit from cars, but not Ford?”

      Not very much, if at all. They have to stay hard in those segments because they don’t have the presence in the full size truck or SUV market.

      They’re all trying, though.

      • 0 avatar
        SCE to AUX

        I predict that Toyota or Honda will start backing out of sedans, too. They’re not printing money with them.

        • 0 avatar
          ajla

          I’m not sure on Honda, but Toyota and the Korean makers still seem pretty big on cars.

          I don’t know what margin or expectations they have on them but it was apparently enough to justify everything but the GS to get a new generation.

          • 0 avatar
            Mandalorian

            The remaining kings of the sedan market really have no reason to exit it. Increase time between refreshes/new models? You bet.

            Sedans were never Ford’s strength. For the last 40 or so years, they’ve just about all been blah rental cars.

        • 0 avatar
          danio3834

          Yep, it’s pretty obvious where their heavy investment is.

  • avatar
    Trucky McTruckface

    Typical Ford. Stop investing in a product, let it rot until consumer sales and market share erode away to nothing, then discontinue the product because “the segment is dying.”

    That really worked out well with the Ranger, Windstar, etc, didn’t it?

    I’m not saying that sedans or any other segment that Ford has lazily and short-sightedly abandoned don’t have limited volume potential, but Ford has the resources to compete, with near-class-leading product when they really want to. It’s especially ridiculous when they continue to develop and sell these classes of product in world markets, yet despite everything that’s happened over the last decade, they still can’t figure out how to build and sell them here for a profit.

    I think a big part of this is that Ford knows that, politically, they can’t get away with importing cars from China right like they want/need to, so they’re trying to spin doing away with the cars altogether as a positive. Five bucks says that once Chinese imports become more accepted, they’ll make a big show of re-entering the sedan market within a decade.

  • avatar
    Chocolatedeath

    This is pretty sad for me and fortunately. I’m going to be going back-to a sedan in two years. I’ve had my fill of crossovers. I was looking at a Ford Fusion twin-turbo V6 as one of my 6 options. Ford has lost a life long fan and one-time customer.

    My Hope from this mess is that Mazda what pickup around 30,000 of these lost two sales.

    • 0 avatar
      mike978

      They should do, if people had sense.

    • 0 avatar
      deanst

      Ford has just said that it will not commit any resources to a new fusion as a sedan -the existing model will be around as long as they have the capacity and it continues to sell at sufficient levels. People have to realize that this announcement was aimed at the financial community, which was really frustrated with ford. Ford had to do something that seemed dramatic – but in reality they are just replacing the fiesta with the eco sport, replacing the focus with the focus active, not committing to updating the fusion, and likely dumping the poor selling and outdated Taurus. Not really earth shattering news when looked at this way.

      • 0 avatar
        Scoutdude

        No the Fusion won’t be around as long as it continues to sell at sufficient levels, 2020 will be the last year as the contracts with the suppliers were not renewed.

        C-Max and Focus have ended production
        Taurus will end with the 19’s
        Fusion will bow out after 2020 if not before.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    “The crossover craze can’t stop, won’t stop”

    The stock market can never go down.

    Buy now or be priced out forever.

    Bear Stearns is fine. Do not take your money out. Bear Sterns is not in trouble.

    • 0 avatar
      hpycamper

      28
      This exactly!

    • 0 avatar
      JDG1980

      What, specifically, do you see pushing people back towards sedans? They are simply an inferior form factor for the use cases of most American drivers.

      • 0 avatar
        ajla

        0. Styling preference change
        1. Use case change

      • 0 avatar
        hpycamper

        JDG
        Mini vans are superior to SUVs,and were once hot, but SUVs are the current fad. Fads fade, things change.

        • 0 avatar
          TTACFanatic

          JDG/hpycamper

          As soon as kids decide they don’t want to drive what their Mom/Dad drove. See the death of Wagons and Mini Vans.

        • 0 avatar

          Were beyond a fad americans move to tucks as personal vehicles began 40 or more years ago. The CUV thing is over 20 years strong now that already beats the minivan sales run.

          • 0 avatar
            hpycamper

            mopar
            You may be right, time will tell. But if the “mommy car” stigma of mini vans recedes, they may steal some SUV sales sometime in the future. And many people really don’t need an SUV.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            The CUV is now the “mommy car”. Mock at will.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        The CUV is inferior because of unnecessarily raised center of gravity and unnatural seating position. The most effective for all probably would be the transverse mounted LWB sedan without any sort of center console, bench seating, and tall formal roofline for head room. Sedans are for transporting passengers, period. There is little need for most sedan buyers to have sedans on the off chance they might transport a passenger over a short distance. In the case of drivers without family to transport on a regular basis, a coupe with small rear doors for occasional rear seat access is probably best idea. Saturn and others tried this, but it never caught on. Yet despite the fact if everyone is “up high” no one is “up high”, the primal instinct of “high = safe” did ultimately win out because we are the bell curve and most humans are too stupid to still be alive. Mankind’s technological advancements have allowed to many to still breath whom should have been eliminated by nature long ago. We literally have ensured the eventual destruction of our own species through our own discoveries. How ironic.

  • avatar

    Toyota must be enjoying watching Ford self destruct. Soon Toyota will replace Ford as America’s second best selling car company. It is already pretty close now.

    Toyota has the right strategy, which is to be competitive in every segment. The Rav4 and Camry work perfectly together. I should also point out that Toyota SUVs are of superior quality as well. They certainly do better in crash tests than Fords.

    Hackett the-hacketman, will do more damage to Ford than Roger Smith ever did to GM.

    • 0 avatar
      mike978

      Exactly. Hackett is just cutting and focusing on segments that will stop growing. Most of Ford’s competitors offer and will continue to offer a full range.

      • 0 avatar
        TwoBelugas

        This started long before Hackett. When Mullaly canceled all the older platforms and “One Ford”ed it, his disciples hissed at anyone who longed for long running platforms that are proven, reliable, and all the bugs worked out.

        In case the nostalgic crowd’s wishes sound familiar, that’s because it’s the Toyota MO. And that’s where Ford sedan buyers went. They bought Camry’s and Avalons instead of Taurus’s and Crown Vics.

    • 0 avatar
      JohnTaurus

      Toyota is competitive in every segment? Except the best selling and most profitable one, which Ford dominates by a wide margin. Toyota is absolutely hopeless in this segment, and has been with every attempt at cracking it.

      But, just ignore facts that don’t support your opinion.

      • 0 avatar
        30-mile fetch

        Toyota is absolutely unable (or unwilling) to compete in the large SUV and truck market, but be a bit careful with the dismissive rhetoric. Toyota is a more profitable company than Ford despite missing out on that most profitable market segment here, and that speaks well for their business strategy.

        • 0 avatar

          I don’t get why Toyota doesn’t try a little harder on their full-size trucks. Look at the Sequoia, fully 10 years old now and unchanged. The Tundra? Out of date as well.

          • 0 avatar
            PrincipalDan

            Ding ding.

            Time for more than 6 gears and start adding some of the latest tricks to the V8s to boost fuel economy.

            Toyota would likely bury some of the other small competitors in that segment if they’d step up to the plate.

            Re: Sequoia – the last C&D comparo they praised the Sequoia’s space utilization given the overall wheelbase but absolutely panned the handling. Actually saying: “Remember how terrible Toyota’s steering used to be?” Citing the Sequoia as an example…

          • 0 avatar
            30-mile fetch

            Dunno. The 2007 Tundra looked like a very good effort, but didn’t pry domestic loyalists out of their brands, so perhaps they decided it just wasn’t worth the R&D costs to keep up with the domestics.

            The domestics look like they spend an enormous amount on frequent updates trying to outcompete each other. If Toyota couldn’t guarantee strong sales of even a best-in-class entrant due to brand perception & loyalty issues, it could be a horrendous use of money.

  • avatar
    eggsalad

    Don’t care. Hate trunks. Waste of footprint. Won’t accept that a trunk is a “secure storage area”.

    Hate crossovers all you want. They’re nothing but tall hatchbacks and wagons. Gotta be tall so you don’t get lost in the mirrors of the guy commuting in an F-350.

    • 0 avatar
      jalop1991

      “Don’t care. Hate trunks. Waste of footprint. Won’t accept that a trunk is a “secure storage area”. ”

      That’s because you’re an idiot with your head in the sand.

  • avatar
    bumpy ii

    I expect the midsize and large sedan segment will eventually resemble the minivan: 2 or 3 strong contenders, another 2 or 3 hangers-on, and everyone else walking away for more profitable ventures.

  • avatar
    Len_A

    You can get similar interior seating room, more cargo space, and park in a shorter space with a CUV verses a sedan. A Ford Edge is actually roomier than the Taurus, by 11 cubic feet more of passenger space, 19 cubic feet more cargo room (with the rear seat UP, not down), but is 14 inches shorter and is 100 pounds lighter.

    • 0 avatar
      Lichtronamo

      +1

    • 0 avatar
      George B

      Len_A, most parking spaces are large enough for a full size pickup truck so parking a Fusion is super easy. I can’t remember the last time I had to parallel park in a short parking space. The Taurus is a special case of big and heavy on the outside vs small on the inside, but even it’s easy to park in a pickup truck sized parking space.

  • avatar
    danio3834

    HUGE MISTAKE, FORD! What will you lose money on when gas prices spike?

    • 0 avatar
      JMII

      That is someone else’s problem. Current management will be long gone, sipping umbrella drinks on some tropical island with all their SUV profits. Seems quarterly profit beats long term growth and stability these days. Common business sense says you don’t put all your eggs in one basket. However apparently the “car” basket smells so bad they don’t want to have any eggs in there. Seems incredibly short sighted. Stock market crash, hurricanes, housing slump, fashion trend, royal wedding, hybrid tech, any number of things to cause the market to swing back the other way leaving Ford with lots full of trucks they can’t sell. Station wagons, mini vans, every few decades consumer’s taste change… will Ford be ready for the next one?

  • avatar
    danio3834

    Manifest CAFE 2025.

  • avatar
    namesakeone

    My guess is that Ford sees every Fusion that sells as an Escape, Edge or Explorer that doesn’t sell. Since the trucks are much more profitable than the cars, it was an easy decision. (I think that every Fusion that sells is a Malibu, Camry, Accord, Altima, Legacy, Mazda6 or Passat that doesn’t.)

  • avatar
    MRF 95 T-Bird

    Just wait there will be the great sedan, hatch and coupe nostalgia era starting in 2020. Automakers with use a few of their CUV platforms for a line or two of automobiles. The next generation Explorer is going to built on a RWD platform that is flexible enough for a mid and full sized Ford and Lincoln.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    I wonder how this will affect Ford’s plant utilization, and what does their workforce have to say about it?

    • 0 avatar
      SC5door

      As far as the US Plants go:

      Focus production in the US ends this week. MAP will be down to convert for Ranger and Bronco and everyone will come back.

      A brand new supplier plant is opening in Detroit just to build parts for Ford and will hire 400 people.

      Taurus production ends next year. Plant will go down for a period of time for the New Aviator and next gen Explorer/Police Utility. No layoffs planned.

  • avatar
    Boff

    In other words, Ford is trying to be like Mitsubishi.

  • avatar
    deanst

    Not exactly news that the fiesta and Taurus had little life left in them. Midsize cars sales are falling even faster outside of America, while the focus can only be profitable if it has a rich model mix. Ford’s new architecture can easily support a return to cars if that is warranted. The real story here is that investors were getting frustrated with the lack of details from ford on how they will improve their finances – Hackett had to do something before he was shown the door.

  • avatar
    Johnster

    Time to restart the Ford Death Watch. This is really sad to see Ford throw in the towel like this. Whenever the price of gas goes up Ford will be caught flat-footed and not have anything to offer the marketplace.

    While I’m generally not a fan of most of their current lineup, I kept hoping that they’d get their act together and come up with a better lineup of reliable passenger cars that could compete with the best of the Japanese.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      No death watch for Ford. They have the widest range of pickup trucks on the market and the sales numbers to back it up.

      If I wasn’t a Toyota Tundra pickup truck convert, I’d be driving a 3/4-ton F250 4dr 4×4 because it is the best all-around truck in that segment.

      Seriously!

    • 0 avatar
      JDG1980

      “Whenever the price of gas goes up Ford will be caught flat-footed and not have anything to offer the marketplace.”

      Ford has hybrid versions of the Escape, Explorer, and F-150 coming in the next few years. They’ll be fine.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      Johnster,
      I don’t know if Ford will be allowed to collapse in the US. Remember the whole of the US vehicle industry is based on using different standards than everyone else, relies heavily on massive import tariffs on light commercial vehicles to sustain it’s existence.

      The government has invested hugely into the Big 2.

      Maybe the government will get to the point and say enough is enough to the Detroit crowd and start forcing them to restructure.

      What occurred in Australia with the Big 2 was quite interesting. They went to the government and more or less demanded cash to remain competitive and luckily the government stated “No, it’s about time you guys compete you’ve had nearly 30 years warning to change”. Well this didn’t go down well.

      The US manufacturers struggle compared to their global peers, especially the Asians. I do believe it’s a cultural and structural issue within the Big 2. In other words it’s the way in which they operate their business models.

      Well, I hope Ford can remain with GM, but if they don’t change and if they can’t exist without a heavily protected US market, well they will fail, or it’s going to cost the US taxpayer huge amounts.

      They need to produce marketable products competitively.

  • avatar
    dejal1

    That explains why Ford is going to race “Mustangs” in NASCAR instead of “Fusions”. Oh well, how expensive can some thermoplastic be?

    Speaking of thermoplastic in NASCAR, they are slowly moving away from metal bodies. In a few years it will be plastic bodies all the time.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    I’ve been pointing this out about Ford and as usual on this site you get smashed for even suggesting such a thing can occur.

    Ford is still complaining about commodity prices and again it’s the only manufacturer complaining. Maybe the aluminium vehicle idea wasn’t so bright after all.

    50% of the market is all it took for Ford to change it’s plans. Yet the 50% are the very vehicles I describe time after time on TTAC that the US isn’t competitive in manufacturing.

    Maybe one day you guys will listen. The US is not competitive at vehicle manufacturing. The people who want to maintain vehicle manufacturing at any cost are tossers and really don’t understand economics.

    Ford is only profitable in the US in the highly protected pickup truck arena, along with the pickup truck station wagons.

    Even with pickup Ford in the US can’t compete. If it could Ford USA would be monopolising on the global pickup truck expansion, from within the US.

    • 0 avatar
      Robbie

      +1

    • 0 avatar
      Ultraviolet Thunder

      You really don’t base your arguments on facts do you?

      Until last year, Ford made more profit in NA per vehicle sold than GM did. And it took GM nearly 10 years after the taxpayers gave them free money and never got paid back for GM to do this.

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        Ultraviolet Thunder,
        WTF?

        The profits made by Ford, GM and FCA are totally reliant on huge US protectionism of it’s vehicle manufacturers.

        Do you not realise this?

        • 0 avatar
          DenverMike

          @BAFO – Saying the same thing over and over (not based on reality) doesn’t make it so.

          Yes the Chicken Tax does focus on “pickups” (and vans), but there’s nothing made globally or in the foreseeable future, that could possibly, realistically, physically (or emotionally) compete with Big 3 fullsize pickups.

          It would be like a cheap sedan from China threatening very foundation of the BMW 3-series, because they both happen to be “sedans”. Yeah you sound that stupid.

          Within the borders, the Tundra and Titan are miserable failures in that challenge. What ever “protection” you squawk about also apply to these too and look what it’s done for them.. Yes zero.

          But speaking of big “vans” made by the Big 3, or formerly made, the Chicken Tax fully “protected” them, and where are they now?

          Of course SUVs are Chicken Tax exempt, so why do you repeatedly bring them up?

  • avatar
    Dan

    Have none of you people throwing stones at this decision been on a car lot lately? These cars have been on fire sale like it’s 2008 all over again. 30% off sticker is routine, which is all the profit and then some when the sticker was 23, and even with that subsidy in place sales are still collapsing. The big Ford chain here has over 300 Foci collecting dust on their lot, at an honest $15K before taxes. Hundreds of Fusions, 3/4 of which are selling for less than 20. Counting in post-Bernanke monopoly money. In real terms that’s late 90s Hyundai money, or maybe even worse.

    Toyota or Honda can still make it work because they can price in 40 years of Camcord equity to go along the economy of scale of making three times as many cars.

    The store brands can’t, aren’t, and won’t.

    • 0 avatar
      Occam

      You rarely see the Focus in the wild. Occasional boy-racer type with an ST, occasional old lady driving one that’s 10 years old, and Enterprise rental cars. That’s it.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      The armchair CEOs who haven’t seen the balance sheets for each model would prefer to continue pumping out their preferred form factor at a loss, evidently.

      I prefer sedans too, but with CAFE and the marketplace being what it is, they don’t have a choice to wait and hope for the winds of change to make small/mid cars great again. Ironically, the Trump administration blowing up CAFE is the only hope. Even then, these investments require huge lead times and an about face isn’t likely.

      • 0 avatar
        hpycamper

        danio
        Some of us “arm chair CEOs” have been around long enough to know that real CEOs aren’t always right. And many times they aren’t looking out for what’s best for long term viability of the company. Arm chair bean counters should know numbers are fluid.

        • 0 avatar
          danio3834

          I know, it’s fun to pretend.

          I also know from experience actually dealing with this stuff inside automakers that Hackett doesn’t have much choice here. Losing money isn’t a choice. There are many factors that the armchair CEOs don’t know about, don’t understand the mechanics of, or refuse to understand because of their own cognitive dissonance.

          The whole industry is going this way in NAFTA, but the armchair CEOs know better…haha stick to fantasy football.

          • 0 avatar
            hpycamper

            danio
            Why are his choices different than the those at Toyota, Honda etc., and how did it come to be?

          • 0 avatar
            danio3834

            “Why are his choices different than the those at Toyota, Honda etc., and how did it come to be?”

            They aren’t. Toyota and Honda are going as hard as they can into CUVs, SUVs and trucks in NAFTA too. Honda would much rather sell you a CR-V over a Civic and a Pilot over an Accord. The cars have been their core market, so they’re the most reluctant to leave, but they’re feeling the squeeze guaranteed.

  • avatar
    05lgt

    OK, this is phase one of my plan. In phase 2, Ford decides Lincoln needs a 4 door sedan, and the only platform to do it with is the Mustang…. Winning!

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    Ford is doing what they need to do to become profitable and survive. Ford will keep the Fusion around a while longer with just a face lift until it is completely obsolete or doesn’t sell as well. Sedans are just not the same as they were in the past with less headroom, less legroom, and mostly unusable trunks. Not too hard to see their loss in popularity.

    I agree with Big Al in that the US based manufacturers are not as competitive in exporting to global markets but just like many of the foreign based manufacturers Ford and GM produce many vehicles globally. I believe if Ford, GM, and FCA needed to get back into offering sedans that they could have a joint venture with a foreign manufacturer or use an existing crossover platform for a sedan. There is only so long that Ford, GM, and FCA can sell deeply discounted cars at the expense of other more profitable products such as trucks, crossovers, and suvs. Crossovers and trucks are becoming more popular globally as well.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      Jeff S,
      I wish I could agree with you in the global markets with the US manufacturers. But they aren’t doing so well either.

      GM is shutting down and selling operations in the EU and struggling in Korea and Australia. Ford has lost 30% in China.

      With Brexit coming and the what I’ve read the motor vehicle manufacturers are nervous, of the US manufacturers Ford could possibly lose out.

      Just building big vehicles is not the answer, especially in a market solely protected to suit their specific companies.

      • 0 avatar
        turf3

        I do not believe that there’s something inherent about being a US auto manufacturer that makes them uncompetitive in building passenger cars.

        I believe it is the poor management of these companies, on top of generations of previous poor management, that makes them uncompetitive. Exhibit One, of course, is all the Japanese manufacturers who are successful at building cars in the USA – but make no mistake, their management policies and the vast majority of their senior, decision-making executives are Japanese.

        The list of how and why American executives have screwed the pooch in their companies (not just automotive) goes on for days. The whole philosophy of American business management and leadership is bankrupt and now that the rest of the world has developed to the point of competing, the essential uselessness of 90% of the American CEO class is being seen. As long as the members of that class take no risk and suffer no personal consequences (other than some loss of face to the general public, about whose opinions they don’t care anyway), this is unlikely to change.

        • 0 avatar
          hpycamper

          Turf3
          Yes, you nailed it.

        • 0 avatar
          Big Al from Oz

          turf3,
          I agree with your statement.

          But, then why is it most any global competitor can successfully set up shop in any country and profit?

          The US’es largest vehicle exporters are BMW and Mercedes Benz. Does this not tell you something?

          It’s not just Ford or even vehicle manufacturers that are confronted with more competition, it’s all US industry and business.

          Just being “American” doesn’t equate to success as easily as it once had served US business. Work is needed.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            “The US’es largest vehicle exporters are BMW and Mercedes Benz…”

            Stupid, it would be like Big 3 moving their fullsize pickup manufacturing to Europe, then claiming victory as the biggest exporters in Europe.

  • avatar
    Pete Zaitcev

    It would be great if they built something like BMW X6, but without the BMW price tag. The Mustang platform seems perfect for it.

  • avatar
    tylanner

    Ford has lost the game….they are soon to be a were and a was.

  • avatar

    Simply an inferior form factor for the use cases of most American drivers.

  • avatar
    Booick

    I dont think its a big deal. The sedan is largely dead or dying. The crossover really is superior to the sedan. And an ideal replacement. Especisllt when it comes to EVs which similarly to body on frame. Have 6 inches of height to design around due to battery pack in the floor. HENCE cross overs are ideal to get adequate cabin space in an ev when considering battery height. Loo k at actual cross over heights and you can see this is exactly what is happening. E.g. kona, i pace, i3, etc

    In the late 50s and early 60s tall cars which had persisted for 50 years were replaced by longer lower wider, and now crossovers and now crossoverss, which are ideal for EVs will replace the sedan. I say good riddance, the trunk is a total waste of design space snd EVs which are properly designed still have locked storage in the frunk.

  • avatar
    pdog_phatpat

    OMG WHAT A GIANT SURPRISE THIS IS!!!!! Who woulda guessed that this was gonna happen? What a surprise!!!!

  • avatar
    Dr. Claw

    Back to the days of looking over at Europe for “forbidden fruit”, only this time the forbidden fruit will be regular cars.

    R.I.P. Ford.

  • avatar
    Dr. Claw

    Never thought I’d ever see Ford go Full Mitsubishi with it. But here we are.

    More reason to lift the 25-year ban, or at least reduce it to 5 years.

  • avatar
    Robbie

    Can we expect phenomenal end of year sales on Ford cars soon? 7k fiestas, 10K focusses, 15K fusions?

  • avatar
    Polishdon

    Remember everyone blasting Sergio and FCA for Dropping the Dart/200? Maybe they were on to something….

    Wonder what GM will do now…

    • 0 avatar
      Robbie

      Cruze, Impala, Spark, Sonic, Malibu…

    • 0 avatar
      TMA1

      FCA botched those cars, especially the Dart, from Day 1. It was all uphill from there. Just six years ago, the current Focus was the best selling car on the entire planet. But it was left to rot on the vine, and its transmission issues caught up to it. It’s no wonder that both vehicles met the same fate.

  • avatar
    Steve_S

    Mainstream brand sedans serve no purpose. They are not dynamically or functionally better than a lift back or wagon.

    V90 > S90
    XF Sportbrake > XF or F-Pace
    E400 Wagon > E400 sedan

    Regal liftback = Regal TourX

    Way back in the day I had a Escort liftback that was vastly more functional to the then day Dodge Shadow or Toyota Tercel.

    • 0 avatar
      gtem

      “Way back in the day I had a Escort liftback that was vastly more functional to the then day Dodge Shadow or Toyota Tercel.”

      The current Civic and Accord sedans with their vanishingly small trunklids and liftback rear pillars and glass should just do the obvious thing and be turned into actual liftback bodies!

  • avatar
    HuskyHawk

    I think this is hard for enthusiasts to accept, but this is about the car as an appliance. CUVs are more versatile appliances than sedans. They give up enthusiast loved attributes, like handling, but gain interior space, better all weather use, better forward visibility and better cargo handling. My CX-5 is a better appliance than a Mazda 6. It isn’t close.

    Young people don’t care about cars anymore. It’s not a passion that many share. More are passionate about ending cars than driving them. This merely reflects that.

  • avatar
    TNJed

    This is depressing but reality. Small cars are going back to be the post WWII oddity they originally were while we Americans indulge in ever more massive, expensive beasts. Light, fun, simple, and frugal are no longer virtues, apparently.

  • avatar
    ItsBob

    As someone who started working as a kid at the ford dealer in 1967 I hate to see this happening too.
    However to those saying it’s “The end” for Ford because of this, give your head a shake. There have been recent reports that show F150 model alone is worth more than the whole of Ford. So that tells someone who reads between the lines that the F150 is subsidizing other models!
    The SUV/CUV products likely all pull in profit, so reasonably, Ford should eventually “Make more ” net profit??
    Where I am worried is by not having a starter price point vehicle, they may lose some new drivers there.

  • avatar
    Ultraviolet Thunder

    2018 is fast turning into a defining one of change for me.

    First, I fired my favorite NFL football team that I’ve endured highs (and lots of lows) with over my 48 year fandom – the Washington Redskins – it took acquiring Alex Smith to finally sign the divorce papers. Now I hope they fail. And I want him to not finish the season. I want mass firings. Karma payback, baby.

    Second, now I must divorce my favorite car company, Ford, one that I seem to have been smitten with since I was old enough to say every car was a “Mustang” – easy since I was born in 1962.

    With the news that you can love it or leave it with the infestation of the horrific CUV and SUV models that are clogging our roads, I must say good riddance to the blue oval. I still love a Mustang but I have no use for one – I’m not young enough to attract a mate nor do I want to stoop so low to sit in something. Even a hybrid one is not enough to make me love the rest of the lineup of Ford which still has the best trucks – but betting the farm on bloated and inefficient CUV’s/SUV’s is just too much for me.

    So now I am in the Hyundai/Kia camp – there is no way in hades I’d ever buy a GM (not made before 72, anyway) and there is no way you could pay me enough to buy an ugly Honduh or Toyoduh. Nissan has nothing and Mazda is content on building cars that are nearly impossible to see out of with their beltlines at jaw level.

    Good riddance, Ford. GM couldn’t entice me away. You did this all on your own. And I hope you fail.

  • avatar
    Ultraviolet Thunder

    Here is the net net of Ford’s decision.

    It has abandoned the place in the market Ford now adheres – the lower cost area. Ford will now be where Mercury was in the lineup – Ford is dead.

    The 2021 year will be one where the average Ford transaction cost will rise to over $35k with the minimum one $28k. No longer will ordinary people be able to afford a new Ford without committing serious financial harm by going to bloated seven plus year loans.

    I understand the profitability concept having been in business myself for over thirty years. I also understand I get business offering some services that are in fact subsidized by very high priced services. That is how I grow my business in the long term by retaining once losing clients into high profit ones over the following five years.

    • 0 avatar
      TMA1

      I agree with you in a way. But I think a lot of manufacturers who do business in the US want to disentangle themselves from small, unprofitable cars. The market is so oversaturated right now that people who should be in the market for entry-level cars would rather shop for something better that is a few years old. The sub-$20K vehicles will still be there in a few years, but they’ll be in the form of a 3-year old, off-lease Escape.

  • avatar
    Grenade

    I predict this will end badly, like the time they decided to kill the Ranger. Other manufacturers will also follow suit, killing their sedans for a few years. Once everyone drives hunchbacked jelly beans, a manufacturer will design an attractive three box sedan and everyone will be like “Why didn’t we do this?”

  • avatar
    DeadWeight

    This is what happens to TTAC when I return;

    Articles with well over 150 and even 220 comments, vs the 7 to 22 without my presence.

    • 0 avatar
      30-mile fetch

      Mr. President, is that you?

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        I’m a truth bomb thrower, not a narcissistic, compulsive liar.

        Someone has to speak truth in colorful, energetic ways, and emphatically point out the massive proportion of incompetents and imbeciles that comprise a very large majority of the executives now running auto companies and the non-stop, incredibly idiotic string of their greatest hits (misses).

        Everyone is too f**king polite and walking on egg shells; it’s almost as if this is a Canadian website.

        • 0 avatar
          30-mile fetch

          You attributed the high comment count to your presence when the article wasn’t written or instigated by you, my comment is the only one in direct response to yours, and you greatly exaggerated the low comment count of articles without your presence. So you’re signalling by taking credit for things you didn’t do, making easily verifiable factual errors, and there’s a strong whiff of self aggrandizement about it.

          Seriously, that’s a POTUS Tweet.

  • avatar
    EspritdeFacelVega

    Over at AutoExtremist a reader made the excellent point that Toyota is investing big $$$ in its Mississippi plant to build the Corolla Hatchback (Hatchback!!!). If they can do this profitably, and they can, why can’t Ford bring in Fusions and Fiestas from Mexico and make money? Even if the segment is declining, leaving 100k+ sales on the table seems daft. I agree this is more about shoring up the exec team with Wall Street analysts, irrespective of longer-term considerations.

  • avatar

    why can’t Ford bring in Fusions and Fiestas from Mexico and make money? Even if the segment is declining, leaving 100k+ sales on the table seems daft. I agree this is more about shoring up the exec team with Wall Street analysts,


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