Since it announced the Model e Certified program last year, Ford has dealt with its fair share of backlash related to this new EV sales program, which Ford dealers were given the chance to either opt in or out of. Facing a number of legal challenges and trust issues pertaining to its implementation, the automaker later decided to make some changes to the Model e Certified program, which satisfied some of those concerns, though others remain. Following these changes, a small number of Ford dealers chose to opt out of the program after initially opting in, and now, more have followed suit, according to Mike Martinez of Automotive News.
Couple additional details here:
-Almost 400 dealers have dropped out of the program since initial enrollment figures were shared.
-Ford wants EV dealers to carry little inventory, so it’s planning for them to restore stock through “retail replenishment centers.” https://t.co/FJSAqMYqaY
— Michael Martinez (@MikeMartinez_AN) November 27, 2023
Martinez notes that around 400 Ford dealers have dropped out of the Model e Certified program since the initial enrollment numbers were shared by the automaker, and adds that Ford wants its dealers to carry very little EV inventory on their lots, which is why it plans to create retail replenishment centers.
This news comes on the heels of Ford’s legal battle in Illinois, which it just lost last week. There, the state’s motor vehicle board determined that Ford broke the law by requiring dealers to make hefty investments in return for the ability to sell all-electric vehicles, a decision that pertains to not only investments in training, but also installing pricey Level 2 chargers. As a result, the automaker made several changes to its requirements, reducing the number of chargers it requires dealers to install, pushing back deadlines to do so, and slashing training costs in half.
Late last month, Ford also announced that it would be delaying or canceling around $12 billion of its own planned investments into EVs amid waning demand, a move that includes downsizing its future BlueOval Battery Park Michigan site and only using one of two under-construction battery plants at BlueOval SK Battery Park in Kentucky for the foreseeable future.