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Ford Dealer Trade Association Shares Concerns Over EV Policy

Following its decision to split itself into two entities – Ford Blue for ICE vehicles and Model e for EVs – The Blue Oval gave Ford dealers a choice – they can continue to sell ICE vehicles only, or they can opt in for one of two tiers of EV certification – Model e Certified, and Model e Certified Elite, each offering different levels of sales capacity, stipulations, and policies. However, many Ford dealers have protested this new program – which requires investments ranging from $500,000 to $1.2 million or more – prompting Ford to push back the deadline for dealers to opt in or out recently. And even though it won’t delay that decision again, Ford is facing even more pushback from the Southern Automotive Trade Association Executives (SATAE), according to CBT News.

SATAE recently sent a letter to The Blue Oval outlining its concerns with this new EV policy, which caps the number of vehicles lower-tier dealers can sell, as well as limit their advertising capabilities, all while while requiring those entities to sell electric vehicles at fixed prices with little to no inventory.

These are the key points that SATAE is focused on – the required investments to become Model e Certified even without any sort of allocation commitment, the vehicle cap and lack of ability to advertise on a dealer site for those that choose the lower tier of certification, the fact that Ford dealers can lose their license to sell all Ford products if they fail to meet these requirements, and the requirement to install expensive public charging stations at dealerships. It argues that the financial burden created by such a move is too much for smaller dealers to overcome.

Ultimately, SATAE believes that these new EV policies will harm dealers, specifically those located in the Southern U.S., which features more rural dealerships that cater to low-income customers in some cases. The association also believes that dealerships that opt out of EV certification – who will get a second change to do so in 2027 – may ultimately lose their franchise contracts as the automaker shifts away from ICE vehicles and toward EVs.

We’ll have more on Ford’s Model e Certified programs soon, so be sure and subscribe to Ford Authority for ongoing Ford news coverage.

Brett's lost track of all the Fords he's owned over the years and how much he's spent modifying them, but his current money pits include an S550 Mustang and 13th gen F-150.

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Comments

  1. Greggt

    I’m sure that is the idea, put those small rural dealers out of business!

    Reply
    1. mfornetti

      Yes, they want the small dealers out, less competition.
      And they force the big dealers to have an mansion so they need to recoup the cost in their pricing structure for the slaes markup and service rate.
      Federal government needs to step in to save the small dealers.
      In my experience, the small dealers have less overhead and fewer useless people and give much more value both on the front end and service later.

      Reply
      1. Heath

        Great more federal bailouts. How about we stop with asinine green energy garbage and ev’s that do more destructive harm to the environment any fossil fuel extraction? There is no way we are going to be able to dig up enough “rare earth metals”, yes RARE, to keep up with the millions of cars built every year. This whole thing is STUPID!!

        Reply
  2. Thurston Munn

    For years the small home town and rural dealers have offered the best after sale service departments. Plus, here in Okla and TX some small towns and rural areas are hundreds of miles from big city service so it becomes very unreasonable for these customers to not have the local dealer support. Added to the fact these customers are not interested in EV’s in the first place. Ford is eventually going to lose a huge part of their customer base with this business model.

    Reply
    1. RWFA

      I don’t think Ford is trying to eliminate rural dealers per se, but is instead looking to reduce the number of dealers in every market.

      Part of it is to recognize that the current retail, distribution and service model is outdated. New competitors are already in the market, and more are coming, they won’t be burdened with old business models.

      Rationalization is necessary so that surviving dealers who will be operating under a no haggle sales model, and EV market share increases driving less service revenue, can turn a profit and be healthy.

      Reply
  3. David Dickinson II

    Ford just needs to admit that they don’t care. Ford’s intent seems to be to focus on high-margin deals with high-margin people who are willing to buy directly from Ford and don’t care what kind of POS product they have to wait 2 years to get. Low income, lower-profit rural folks are expendable. It’s sad to see Ford turn its back on real America.

    Reply
    1. RWFA

      Real America? You nuts?

      In every town big and small, there are the graves of local boys and girls who died somewhere fighting for the best of America.

      All of America is real America.

      To imply something other than that is not only ignorant and stupid but a grave insult to what those boys and girls sacrificed.

      Reply
      1. David Dickinson II

        You will be happy to know that I actually inserted the word “real” just to trigger you. I thought to myself, “yeah, that will really set Robert off.” It worked!

        Reply
        1. RWFA

          Cool story bro, just like your antisocial comments are “jokes” but only after you are called out.
          Such a weird and sad thing to be proud of but if babies can be proud of filling their diapers I suppose you can be proud of this.

          In any case, it seems triggering is a significant part of your existence and possibly a bug accomplishment in an otherwise banal life so I’ll gladly give it to you.

          That said, despite your pyrrhic success, you really don’t look any less the jackass for your framing and actually even more so whether it’s due to a real or retroactively claimed motivation.

          Ps
          Dear Chad, in terms that you probably understand, please accept your virtual participation trophy. I’m rather well served just rebuking the folks spewing fact less nonsense and trying to offer helpful comments to those asking questions in good faith.

          But, still, thank you for your input (such as it was).

          Dear Mike, what have you missed about Toyota realizing they slept on EV’s and are now scrambling with an EV offensive to catch up? But until they catch up with the market, please feel free to sell their increasingly antiquated tech.

          Dear itchy trigger finger Davy, in a similar vein, “I’m not triggered, you’re [email protected] my little red snowflake. No trophy for you tho.

          Reply
          1. Chad

            Robert, why don’t you give it a break. This is a Ford vehicle forum. Not an outlet for you to practice your psycho-analytical skills. Leave your political, societal and interpersonal relationship diagnostic skills to Web MD. You are better served being Ford Motor Companies Engineeiring Sales and Marketing unpaid champion.

            Reply
          2. Mike

            Ford’s CEO is simply trying to force EVs on people, and it is clearly not working. Ford has the worst financial numbers out of all auto makers due to this push that is clearly failing. Toyota stated their focus will not be on EVs and their financial numbers are fantastic. Americans simply don’t want EVs.

            Reply
          3. David Dickinson II

            Robert, by saying I meant to trigger you, I triggered you again! This is too easy. Stop stepping in it!

            Reply
        2. Will

          RWFA fights with everyone on the page. He thinks he knows everything and that kind of person usually knows the least. That is why he has to call people names when he can’t win on logic.

          Reply
          1. RWFA

            Oh hi fact-free little swinging’ Willi…

            Reply
  4. Big Burning Gas Steve

    All dealers should tell Ford to go F-Off! Electric cars will die out, the US doesn’t have enough electric capacity! hydrogen is next, same technology different fuel!

    Reply
    1. RWFA

      Dear big clueless big idea Steve.

      Q: Where does the hydrogen come from?
      A: Electrolysis.

      Q: What is the essential input for electrolysis to work?
      A: Electricity.

      Oh my, the poor grid again!

      So much ignorant FUD.

      Reply
  5. Martin K

    This new Communist CEO needs to go. They are trying to string arm dealers into EVs, glad they are resisting. Local dealer already had to buy back a Lightning and MachE due to quality issues. Consumer Reports already dropped the MachE due to the poor quality. And the EV buyer pool is very small, Americans can’t be forced into vehicles they don’t want.

    Reply
    1. RWFA

      Cool story Big Oil Bro.

      Oh and “communist”? Thanks for the morning laugh.

      Reply
  6. Robert

    EVs are the future. Get used to it. We have a Mach-e and a Tesla Y. Both are way better vehicles than the ICE vehicles they replaced. I can see adoption in rural areas taking longer than urban markets but it is coming. Try driving one. Ford is thinking ahead to compete with EV manufacturers, including the large number of inexpensive Chinese EVs headed to the US in the next few years.

    Reply
    1. RWFA

      Firstly great name! And although you’re not me I agree with your analysis.

      Reply
    2. Sam

      Consumer Reports dropped the MachE due to the severe quality issues.

      Reply
  7. Mike says...

    Fords decision to go this route with essentially 2 companies is less of an issue than how they are going about it. The mandates to choose your product and commit to spending loses me when it puts dealers under more controls and limits their ability to run their businesses on their own terms. The only thing I like is a fixed pricing model which is currently the scourge of industry and has permitted less ethical stores to price gouge FORD customers. If there is a win/win in FORDs plan, I don’t see it going forward as they seem to be creating far more problems than they are solving.

    Reply
    1. RWFA

      Martin above called the Ford CEO a communist, he’s only right insofar as the part about “breaking eggs if you’re gonna make an omelet.”

      Times of transition are messy and this transition Ford is going through has moving parts galore but all of them address long standing unaddressed problems that would sink ford if nothing is done. That said, there’s no guarantee Ford will survive to come out the other side but there’s no reason it won’t either.

      As far fixed pricing model, is that even a thing yet? If not, how has it led to present gouging?

      As for gouging, I suspect though Ford doesn’t like it, and has tut tutted about it, it may not want, or may not be able under franchise laws, to presently curtail the practice because the only real countermeasure for profit constrained supply, for some dealers, is to sell in markup. (To my mind, these are dealers already in trouble.)

      Bottom line, fewer profitable dealers in the future selling at a fixed price, not all racing each other to the bottom is good for everyone. Yes, even customers because they will keep Ford in check on both product and price by voting with their wallets and feet.

      Reply
  8. James stacy

    I’ve been a loyal ford customer but this policy will turn me away. EVs are a fad. May work in big cities but won’t in rural America. This is just more liberal crap. I’m a farmer that feeds you. EVs won’t haul the beef you all eat to the markets.

    Reply
    1. S.Bricker

      You haul meat to market in a pick up ?

      Brother you must be a pretty small operation!

      Reply
    2. RWFA

      What are you freaking out about? Do you haul this beef in the back seat of your car for godsakes?

      Maybe Fox or NewsMax or ONN have left out the part about Ford still selling a complete palate of non EV commercial vehicles?

      Passing fad? Liberal crap? LoL man thats nonsense horse hockey. Just cool it you’ll be fine.

      (But frankly, you should really be complaining about the over consolidation in the beef rendering and packing industry, as they’ve quietly taken all the profit out of your business while Fox has been amping up your fear of “The Communist Libs!”.)

      Reply
  9. S.Bricker

    1. Someone made a comment about Ford being in poor financial shape? Think they said the wort? Too lazy to scroll back and look for it but that would be WRONG. GM is actually extremely leveraged and pimping a bunch of phantom EV’s that it doesn’t really have.

    2. Ford is competing with and seeks to overtake Tesla. Tesla has no Dealership overhead to deal with so yeah Ford is asking the dealerships what have you done for me lately? Ultimately Dealers are going to way of the Dinosaur.

    3. Ford is already changing its battery chemistry to accommodate rare earth material limitations.

    You folks that think this is a passing fad crack me up. Ford has already stated that the labor savings on manufacture is substantial. All of the emissions controls go bye bye. No catalytic converter. It’s inevitable. If you don’t like what Ford is doing scoot on over to GM.

    “It is only a question of a short time when the carriages and trucks of every large city will be run by motors. The expense of keeping and feeding horses in a great city like New York is very heavy, and all this will be done away with. You must remember that every invention of this kind which is made adds to the general wealth by introducing a new system of greater economy of force. A great invention which facilitates commerce, enriches a country just as much as the discovery of vast hoards of gold.” –Thomas Edison

    Reply
    1. RWFA

      Good comment.

      Edison was commenting about early horseless carriages in urban applications of course (think no more horse manure filling the streets.). And of course he was promoting electric cars because he had electric patents and sold electricity and more outlets for his products created a self reinforcing virtuous profit growth cycle for him.

      But he was right despite all the antediluvian naysayers of his time.

      He also wanted to go big into electric cars together with Henry ford I, but nether the common lead acid nor Edison’s 1901 proposed Ni-Fe battery were up to the task (not to mention the inefficiency of non rare earth magnet brushed motors or the fact that most of America would be electrified for another 1/4 century.)

      And who’s to say what “…only a question of a short time…” meant?

      Because frankly, given the progress packed into the last 100 years, it truly is only a short time.

      Ps Half a planting season after Henry Ford built his experimental Quadacycle, my grandma was born on a rural Michigan farm without phone, lights, running water or indoor plumbing.

      And even though getting the vote was then a few years in the future, she was the first owner of a (used in partnership with her dad born during the civil war era) Model T (touring sedan) in their village (and a speed demon at 28 mph down the dirt lane).

      She lived not only to see men on the moon but even a decade beyond the launch of the Hubble and got calls via satellite on a Motorola Star-Tac.

      And in that time and hers, the expansion of science and knowledge has accelerated.

      So, why do some folks think that electric cars, now well proven for over a decade, primarily by Tesla but also every other player, are a passing fad or something to rail against?

      It makes no rational sense unless folks think the future can only, or should only, ever be like the past, and close their eyes tight, or watch mindless right wing drivel designed to frighten them into supporting worldviews that actually disadvantage them to the benefit of a rising American oligarchy.

      It’s pretty sad really. If these folks banging on about fads and communists and the like had run the world over the last century, our lives would be much like my grandmother’s early life, rather than like her latter life.

      Reply
  10. Mike

    Good. If I never have to step into a scumbag dealership again in my life it would be too soon (and I used to work for a dealership). Just let me select the vehicle I want off a website and have it delivered to my door. Bonus that EV’s have about 45% less parts, less things to break so should require less service. These yesteryear con-artists can cry me a river about “oh the poor dealerships”. Whatevs. 😆

    Reply

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