At the same time that Ford Europe plans to cut jobs and axe models, the automaker will refocus some amount of resources on introducing new models in more successful segments, as well as producing new performance and luxury derivatives.
The UK’s Auto Express reports that Ford Europe will increase its focus on the SUV segment, first with the UK launch of the Edge crossover this spring. Meanwhile, the declining MPV segment looks likely to shrink, with Ford Europe possibly giving the axe to the B-MAX and/or C-MAX. Auto Express suspects that even the Galaxy could conceivably be replaced by an SUV.
Simultaneously, Ford’s new Vignale luxury brand will expand to encompass five offerings by 2017, starting with the Ford Mondeo Vignale revealed last year, and followed by the announced S-MAX Vignale. On the performance side, Ford Europe could expand the ST brand to one or more performance SUV models, and might even consider applying the badge to the Mondeo sedan – although America’s Fusion V6 Sport model wears no ST badge.
Ford Europe has targeted operating margins between 6 and 8 percent in the region, with the hope that cutting under-performing vehicles, reducing administrative costs, and focusing on more profitable segments and models can help it get there.