At a media event on Monday, Ford Motor Company CEO Mark Fields announced the automaker’s intention to have a mass-production, fully-autonomous vehicle to sell by the middle of the next decade, strongly suggesting a 2025 target year.
But as Ford Motor Company attempts to make the jump to an automotive and a mobility company, the role of car sales in constituting the automaker’s earnings will be diminished somewhat. In fact, Autoline Daily quoted the Ford CEO as saying: “It’s no longer about how many vehicles we can sell. It’s about how many services we can sell,” suggesting that not only will Ford’s new-car sales be complimented and bolstered by selling mobility services, but that vehicle sales could conceivably even take a back seat to service sales.
At the event, Ford CEO Fields also responded to concerns that Ford might soon be surpassed by competing tech companies also looking to streamline their mobility services with autonomous tech. He said that Ford still maintains several advantages, including: already having the ability to build cars at-volume, being experienced with integrating new technologies in automobiles, having a finance subsidiary to handle mobility-related transactions, and having a massive, global wholesale and retail network in place.
The main hub through which Ford plans to sell mobility services, the FordPass mobile app, was released last April.