Ford CEO Farley Again Promises Profitable, Affordable EVs for the Masses

Chris Teague
by Chris Teague

Ford loses more than six figures on every EV that it sells, but that hasn’t tempered CEO Jim Farley’s ambitions. Speaking with Yahoo Finance, Farley said his company aims to develop affordable EVs that compete with the rising tide of Chinese models.

Saying that China’s investments in EVs have “paid off so far,” Farley noted that Ford is on track for its next-generation electric models to be profitable and affordable. He also confirmed that The Blue Oval is working on a smaller electric platform to help it reach that goal.

Ford quietly recruited a skunkworks team to push the project forward, with Farley saying that the company grabbed “a lot of Tesla and Apple people.” He said the team is taking “a completely different approach” and noted that the new models will have smaller batteries with different chemistries.

Farley believes that the best EVs in today’s world come from China, and he detailed Ford’s efforts to develop new battery tech to better compete with the country’s auto manufacturers. The automaker has invested in new battery chemistries and production at its Marshall, Michigan facility. Ford has also partnered with CATL, a huge global battery manufacturer, to research and develop the batteries.

All of this comes right on the heels of the automaker’s announcement that it would push back some EV releases to focus on lower-cost hybrids and PHEVs. It’s also an interesting announcement in light of Ford’s continued financial losses in its electric vehicle business. Further investments in EV technologies mean that every vehicle sale has to deliver more profit to break even, something the automaker has struggled with.

[Images: Ford]

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Chris Teague
Chris Teague

Chris grew up in, under, and around cars, but took the long way around to becoming an automotive writer. After a career in technology consulting and a trip through business school, Chris began writing about the automotive industry as a way to reconnect with his passion and get behind the wheel of a new car every week. He focuses on taking complex industry stories and making them digestible by any reader. Just don’t expect him to stay away from high-mileage Porsches.

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6 of 82 comments
  • Lorenzo Lorenzo on Jun 04, 2024

    If Bill Ford wants to see Ford Motor survive another generation, he'll have to hire a replacement for Farley soon, one with an engineering degree and experience with automobile assembly lines and a love for cars, and surround him with other engineering degree executives. Any executives with BA degrees and MBAs don't belong in manufacturing, they're finance people, at best.

    • See 1 previous
    • Akear Akear on Jun 06, 2024

      Barra and Farley are two individuals who have kneed the US auto industry in the groin.

  • Paul Paul on Jun 04, 2024

    Oh, the irony. 10 years ago they had solid entries in all these categories - C-Max hybrid and PHEV, Fusion Hybrid and PHEV, Focus Electric. 20 years ago you could get an Escape Hybrid.

    Ford and their dealers tossed these over the wall and walked away from them, never doing anything to promote or improve them over their life cycle. They still have a newer version of the Escape PHEV, which isn't a bad vehicle but I doubt if the buying public knows they exist & I rarely see one on the road.

    The Maverick hybrid is a nice idea and they could sell more if they would build more but again, I rarely see one in the wild.

    Feckless and clueless management and board - they richly deserve their coming bankruptcy.

    • See 1 previous
    • Scott Scott on Jun 08, 2024

      I would be delighted to be able to buy a new 2019 fiesta ST. Hybrids didn’t make a lot of sense but they were more affordable and practical than any EV. Ford has throttled the availability of Maverick to help push the Ranger, which has a much greater profit margin. Unfortunately, Ford is going to be buried in MachE and f150 lightning inventory. You know that the fire sales have started when you see Mach E in Pizza Hut or Dominoes livery as pizza delivery vehicles.