The blue oval makes a record-breaking loss, and ties hopes for recovery to Fiesta and Focus
24 July 2008

Ford has just announced that it made a record breaking $8.7bn loss during the second quarter of the year – but the company has also revealed plans to introduce several European models into the US market.

Ford has been hit hard by both the worsening economic situation in America and the rising cost of oil, which has further reduced demand for the gas-guzzling pickup trucks and SUVs which it has used to support itself in the ‘States.

The $8.7bn loss includes a $8bn ‘special pre-tax charge’ – the costs that have already been incurred in restructuring the company. Ford is now planning to shift production at three of its North American factories from trucks and SUVs to smaller European models.

Ford has also announced it will be introducing six European models to the USA by 2012, with company insiders indicating that the new Fiesta and European Focus will be the first to cross the Atlantic.

The company is also pinning its hopes of reducing fuel demand on the development of a range of ‘EcoBoost’ turbocharged petrol engines, which should improve fuel economy by around 20percent compared to the company’s current offerings. In the longer term it’s possible that some of the blue oval’s European diesel models will also be offered in America.

Our Verdict

Ford Fiesta
Fiestas sold in Europe are ostensibly the same as those sold in America and Asia

The seventh-generation Ford Fiesta is the UK's best selling car, helped by frugal engines, handling verve and a big car feel

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24 July 2008

Lucky yanks. Getting some decent Ford metal at last. Just hope they don't screw up the build like they did with the first Focus, gaining it a reputation as a lemon.

24 July 2008

Ford US bringing Ford Europe product over wholesale to fill empty SUV/pick-up facilities. So what will all the product and development people do at Dearborn and such places? There must be 10,000 plus of them, idling. Shocking.

What's the betting on Ford Europe, read Ford of Germany's engineers at Koeln-Merkenich predominantly, effectively taking over the 'American' Ford Motor Company within five years?

25 July 2008

Seems like Ford US under Mulally are finally working out they have some great product available to them. Obviously price points have always been an issue with a Mondeo class vehicle selling in the US for about half what it sells for in Europe but given the development expense is made anyway they should access these vehicles.

This is the same argument for the larger RWD vehicles. Ford Australia produces a terrific vehicle in the Falcon and it is developed for tiny money compared with what the US would spend. Strangely during the development the US denied Australia the right to develop the FG Falcon so it would accept LHD. It is unlikely the same mistake will ever be made again.

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