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Daniel Howes: Ford Is ‘Lagging’ Behind General Motors

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Detroit News Columnist Daniel Howes said in a recent podcast essay that Ford Motor Company is “lagging” behind General Motors with regard to readying for the future.

“A respected Wall Street analyst says Ford’s earnings outlook could be cut in half in the next 18 to 24 months,” says Howes. The predicament in which the automaker finds itself today is one in which “its best-selling F-Series trucks produce the vast majority of its fat profits [and] it’s not moving quickly enough to reshape its global footprint and get out of places where it doesn’t make enough money.”

General Motors, meanwhile, suffers from neither problem. The company sold its European Opel/Vauxhall unit to PSA Group earlier this year, after years of losses in the region. It also put the Chevrolet Bolt on sale this year – the first pure-electric vehicle with more than 200 miles of range for less than $30,000.

That’s to say nothing of the advent of vehicle connectivity, where again, Ford is struggling to keep up with GM’s OnStar and in-car 4G LTE.

Howes says that former Ford CEO Alan Mulally, Mark Fields’ predecessor, was brought on to “save Ford from itself,” but that his practices left Ford woefully under-prepared for the direction in which things are moving. Mark Fields, who was replaced by Jim Hackett just last month, did little to remedy that situation.

“The house that Alan built is necessary, but it’s not sufficient for the new world,” Howes says.

(Source: Detroit News)

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Written by Aaron Brzozowski

Aaron Brzozowski is a writer and motoring enthusiast from Detroit with an affinity for '80s German steel. He is not active on the Twitter these days, but you may send him a courier pigeon.

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  1. Except that the whole electric car boom and self driving fad is mostly just news, a flash in the pan. if they wee going to be huge they would have come around during the 4$ a gallon days. SUV’s and trucks are where the market is going. Most people want a showy car

  2. There is some truth to this, while F150 continues to be the best selling product in the Ford portfolio there are some other big factors hurting the brand.

    Reliability across the brand needs to improve, QC in some models needs to be increased or the model will cease to exist.

    Death of the mid-size sedan is a reality of today, SUV’s both large and small continue to dominate the market.

    The My Ford Touch multimedia disaster really hurt the brand, now even as Ford Police Explorer (PI UTILITY) dominates the segment it to has a Carbon Monoxide exhaust leak issue that’s hurting sales.

    The GM OnStar program is so superior to anything Ford has it will always dominate, the latest Ford SYNC3 still has issues and even in 2017 model years, the Ford line up is missing remote connectivity.

    You cant treat loyal customers poorly and expect repeat sales.

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