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Ford Authority

Ford CEO Jim Farley Says Company Lost Billions On Sedans

Ford’s decision to discontinue its sedans in the U.S. a few years ago was one that was met with universal shock at the time, along with plenty of criticism – though some have since defended it. Now, years later, many still question this move, even as hard sales data seems to support it and Americans continue to show a preference for crossovers, SUVs, pickups, and profitable specialty models like off-road-focused trims and variants. In addition to that, it seems as if Ford also lost a good bit of money when it was selling sedans in the U.S., too.

“The reason is very simple – we lost billions on them, and we are not in a position to lose billions on vehicles anymore,” Farley told The Smoking Tire’s Matt Farah during a recent podcast. “As a business leader, I don’t believe that the company should allocate capital to vehicles that I know we are going to lose money on, and so we decided to create Mavericks, Broncos, Bronco Sports, and all sorts of other vehicles like the (Mustang) GTD that will make money. Raptors, Tremors, Transit vans, electric vehicles that will make money over time. That is what we do at Ford. It was a judgement call to move out of the commodity part of the market into vehicles that our company wakes up in the morning and does well.”

Ford has remained adamant that it killed off sedans in the U.S. due to declining sales, which makes sense from a business perspective as the company has a finite amount of resources to dedicate to its products. As fellow Blue Oval exec Kumar Galhotra told Ford Authority in an interview back in 2020, “do we want to invest it in a declining segment or do we want to invest it in a growing segment?”

Regardless, it’s unclear if Farley is talking about a specific model here or the automaker’s sedans as a whole, which previously included the Fiesta, Focus, Fusion, and Taurus. However, while Farley recently dismissed the idea that Ford has considered bringing sedans back to the same market, but also admitted that a four-door version of the Ford Mustang may one day come to fruition, too.

We’ll have more on Ford’s strategy soon, so be sure and subscribe to Ford Authority for the latest Ford business news and 24/7 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. JE

    Kia, MB, Audi, VW, Alfa Romeo, Tesla, Skoda, Hyundai, BMW, Peugeot, Renault among others sell sedans succesfully without losing money. They even make money with them.
    If Farley isn´t capable of sell sedans succesfully without losing money, then he shouldn´t be CEO of Ford after all. Not everybody like SUV´s or crossovers or is willing to buy one no matter what.

    Reply
    1. Paul Dunton

      Agreed, but it’s too late to change direction.

      Reply
      1. Tigger

        It’s never too late as proven by the reversal on the EV bull crap.

        Reply
    2. Not so fast

      You’re sure about that? Most of their sedan sales have cratered, and they have replace many models with crossovers.

      Reply
    3. MD

      And all those companies have something in common- largely European sales, where smaller vehicles and tighter roads are more common, and the consumer isn’t accustomed to paying dramatically less for a vehicle just because it’s smaller. US consumers spend considerably more time in their vehicles, are more likely to eat or drink in them, take family trips in them of hundreds or even thousands of miles, and sit in traffic where almost all the other vehicles are tall. It’s just not a comparable situation. It’s not an accident that both Stellantis and GM dramatically cut or eliminated car sales, too.

      Reply
      1. JE

        The Ford Mondeo (Fusion) was leader in sales in its segment in Europe together with the VW Passat. Also the Fusion was 3rth place in sedan sales just after the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord in the US. I confirm my argument. If with such sales numbers Farley lost billions in sedan sales, then he shouldn´t be CEO of Ford.

        Reply
    4. Gilbert

      I agree… Toyota..Nissan…kia . Hyundai and others have no problem selling and making money on sedans…Ford just refuses to design anything new and blames it on customer demand when sales of a decade old bodystyle slumps…such as tge fusion and thunderbird

      Reply
    5. Midwestern Joe

      Exactly!!!! I have been saying the same thing!!!! Look how many Fusions are on the road, and their late models (2019/2020) are very nice sedans!!!

      Reply
  2. Paul Dunton

    Ford is living on borrowed time. It has no footprint in Asia, it’s tanking in China, Europe is declining and the US is F150 dependent. It can’t make money on sedans because it has no scale, little innovation, high costs and zero long term vision.

    Reply
    1. Jon

      Thats the dumbest thing I’ve read in along time.

      Reply
    2. Not so fast

      China’s market is collapsing, Europe is in turmoil, and Ford has many profitable models aside from F-Series (Explorer, Transit, Maverick, all best sellers in their segments, as well as Bronco that they can never make enough of.

      Thanks for the uplifting comment, try to get some facts straight before enlightening us again.

      Reply
  3. David Dickinson II

    “we are not in a position to lose billions on vehicles anymore” says Mr. Farley while he lost billions–and will continue to lose billions–on his EV “pivot.” I don’t know how much Ford lost on each sedan, but I bet it isn’t the $65k they lose on each EV.

    Reply
  4. Tigger

    Bullcrap. Ford offers sedans in other nations and I am sure they are not losing money. In fact, offering sedans in more than a few countries would drive down costs through economies of scale.

    Reply
    1. Sam

      The problem is without a low priced sedan by either Ford or GM you are giving no choice for first time buyers to buy an American made vehicle .
      You are sending them to Toyota , Honda , Mazda , Nissan , Kia , Hyundai ,VW who all produce introductory compact 4 door sedans . Once they buy one of those brands they will develop a loyalty to that brand, They may never look at a Ford or GM product when they are ready to move up to an SUV or truck .
      I do not consider Chrysler an American company anymore as they are owned by Stellantis a French , Italian conglomerate .

      Reply
      1. Not so fast

        They each have vehicles that start at the same prices as Toyota and the others sedans. Ford has the Maverick, Chevy has the Trax. Both start at the same price as the cheapest Toyota. Ford outsold Toyota brand last year and GM outsold Toyota Group, so I don’t think your logic is playing out like you think it should.

        You guys are outrageous with making up reasons why you’re right. The facts just don’t bear that out.

        I love my sedans and hate crossovers. But if you want to run a business, you have to make money.

        Reply
        1. Cigna

          You won’t be making and money if your sedan customers buy another brand and don’t ever come back like me. I never believe anything Failure Farley says. There is also no way Ford is making money on the Lincoln Navigator when they can’t even sell 20,000/year despite its $100,000 price tag. Like, I said, I never believe anything Failure Farley says.

          Reply
      2. Dennis

        I own a Hyundai Sonata, and will probably never own another American nameplate. Great looks, great mileage, comfort..ike I have said before, the American automakers gave the Asians the car market to them on a platter…

        Reply
    2. Not so fast

      Maybe because they can sell sedans in those markets (CHINA, with export to the UAE) for a price that makes money? Ever think of that?

      But, sure, they just hated making money on sedans and made up a big lie about it.

      Reply
  5. Sorry but it\'s true

    Let’s hear it, how Toyota and Honda and HKG are laughing all the way to the bank with all their profitable sedans…

    Except since Fusion was discontinued, Camry sales have fallen by half. The Accord? Being outsold by the Ford Maverick, not just for the month, but every month in 2024 so far. Maverick is also outselling every HKG car. If you add Bronco Sport and Escape sales together, they easily outsell Civic and Corolla.

    Like it for not, Ford made the right decision. I own two Ford sedans and I don’t plan on giving them up anytime soon.

    Reply
    1. Cigna

      Let’s not forget you are taking about the American market, Ford’s own turf. Ford sales in Japan=0.

      Reply
  6. Mike

    Didn’t Ford claim that they are losing $100,000 on every EV they make??? I bet they weren’t losing anywhere close to that amount on each sedan they made!
    Jim Farley is a 🤡

    Reply
  7. fpvfan

    Ford lost money on sedans because their sedans sucked. I GUARENTEE if the USA had a falcon performance sedan with the 2.3L ecoboost as a base engine, a 3.0L ecoboost ST, a 3.5L HO Falcon SHO, a 5.0L GT, a 5.2L fpc v8 BOSS-315 and a top end Falcon SVT Predator with the predator 5.2L v8, Ford would have outsold the Charger, especially if the car had AWD. Here’s another great thing about the Falcon, it came in multiple body styles including a mini truck (typhoon), meaning the maverick wouldn’t be needed and an EV falcon SUV would have been received alot better than the Mach e. While I would have preferred an ecoboost version of the BARRA I-6TT powertrain over the v6versions, Ford could have made a killing with this sedan over the crappy fusion.

    Reply
    1. Ryan

      Don’t forget Ford was also likes to try to sell 7-10+ year old products with little to no updates and wondering why they weren’t selling like other brands. Taurus 2010-2019, Fusion 2013-2020, Focus, 2011-2018, Fiesta 2011-2019, Flex 2009-2019, Expedition 2007-2017, Explorer 2011-2019, Edge 2015-2024, Transit Connect 2014-2023.

      Reply
    2. Lurch

      As an American, I feel cheated that the only Australian Ford we got was the two-seater Mercury Capri. At least The General badge-engineered Holdens as the GTO, G8, and SS.

      Reply
      1. Mick1

        It was a success. Pontiac RIP 2010.

        Reply
    3. Stalkbroker94

      I don’t think they would have needed an exaggerated number of engine options. You have a tendency to do that, you know. I knew I’d come into the comments and see you listing off a half-dozen engine options. That being said, why do that when the Mustang is in play?

      Reply
  8. How Did I know

    So many MBAs in here, I hope you all have your resumes in to the board to replace Jim. 😂

    Reply
  9. Cigna

    It will be a great day when Ford’s entire sedan-hating executives are replaced by executives who know how to make money on sedans. What Failure Farley was trying to say is that he hates sedans.

    Reply
  10. Outlook214

    Farley’s “vison”: As long as we slap B R O N C O or Mustang on the name plate, we’ll be an industry leader. Mustang, Mustang Mach E and a 4 door “Mustang” will sell like hotcakes. Let’s make a Bronco, an Escape that we can call Bronco (Sport) and lets get to work on a Bronco pickup to compete against our new Ranger. Jeep did and was very successful for one whole year, now they offer 10% factory discounts. If this isn’t innovating enough lets make an appearance package and we’ll dub it ST-Line so people think they’re getting our successful ST performance package……. This guy is the best Ford could find? WOW!!!!

    Reply
    1. Luke

      Exactly! Lincoln suffers also because the current lineup has nothing we want. Currently with no heritage vehicles, no iconic vehicles, nothing to aspire to and no flagship. Ford turned Lincoln into Mercury and look what happened to Mercury. I think anyone could do a better job than the person at Ford currently.

      Reply
  11. Tim

    Based on this logic, they should stop production of the EV. Ford is losing billions on this endeavor.

    Reply
  12. Tommy

    How much do they pay this clown? Armchair quarterback for sure. Whatever drugs the board of directors are taking I’d cut back on the dose

    Reply
  13. Terry

    They had 2 CEO candidates and they chose Ryan Leaf! Please call Joe Hinrichs and say your sorry

    Reply
    1. Bob

      Yes !!!

      Reply
  14. Daniel

    Loss is a matter of perspective. Ford would not have made the cars if they could not have made a per unit profit from them. But when you compare the opportunity cost against selling it similarly contented SUV, I’m sure he estimates that it was a loss.

    Reply
  15. Mf

    The reason that they’re not selling sedans is really simple. CAFE requirements from the EPA.

    CAFE rules for sedans and cars are completely unrealistic, and have been for several years. If you build it as a crossover, you can class it as a light truck and you don’t have to face the more absurdly high requirements for cars.

    The CAFE fines make sedans an untenable product. It’s 100% down to the EPA and its regulations.

    Reply
    1. anonymous guest

      I agree with blaming NHTSA and EPA for killing mass market cars. Ironically they’ve pushed toward less efficient vehicle shapes.

      Reply
      1. Lurch

        They tried to kill the gas-guzzling LTDs and Marquis but just sent everyone into trucks.

        Reply
  16. FlGuy62

    Ford walked away from the American market for sedans. The American sedan market didn’t walk away from Ford.

    Reply
  17. Mitch

    Ford is losing money on electric vehicles. Get out of them and get going on hydrogen that’s the future.

    Reply
  18. Sam

    Drove Fords for years. Now I drive imports as they are the only sedans but 💯 better than anything Built here.

    Reply
  19. MIKE BARANOWSKI

    Bullfeathers!!!!!!
    Can you believe what comes out of Farleys mouth? I can’t.

    Reply
  20. LuisC

    Lies, people want sedans and will continue to want sedans.

    Reply
  21. Sam

    Ford’s US labor costs are too high. Thanks UAW. You bankrupted GM and Chrysler 15 years ago. Bet you wanted to make it all 3, huh?

    Reply
    1. Joe C.

      Don’t BlameThe Unions!Ford was making money by the ton as workers received NO Raises!

      Reply
    2. Bob

      Have to agree with you Sam. Between the UAW wages and the CAFE standards imposed by the government, we lost the US sedan.

      Reply
  22. Jonboi

    Will not own an ev! It is ironic that Fusion was chosen for the lead pix for the article. Fusion (2014) was the best car I have owned. While I like the pony car, it has not convinced me to give up a twenty year old Porsche. Sorry Ford, but personally, you blew it.

    Reply
  23. Jim Elsasser

    Farley should NOT be CEO of Ford. No clue of what he’s doing. As Ive stated previously get some designers who have imaginations and gasoline in their veins. People have had it with boxy SUVs. It is and will be Farleys downfall

    Reply
    1. Tigger

      Unfortunately “leadership” is suspect at ALL the traditional Big 3 companies.

      Reply
  24. chu choo

    Fortunately if you want a sedan there are still plenty to choose. So what if GM and Ford don’t make and sell any in US & Canada. Most folks want some sort of SUV (which is really a type of station wagon; one of the most sensible of all car designs) or truck (of which many are just SUVs without an enclosed cargo area). Quit moaning and shop a brand that will gladly sell you a sedan.

    Reply
  25. StarLord

    Quality control cost them the money. Add to that they aren’t making sedans that people really wanted.

    Ironically Jim says Ford isn’t a company to lose money on cars so we decided to make the Mach E and the Lightning.

    Maybe Jim, it’s not the cars that are making Ford lose money. Did you ever think of that?

    Reply
  26. morrisangelo

    From 2010 up until recently, I remember seeing plenty of Fusions on the roads?

    Sounds like Ford & GM are being told what to make, and they seem afraid to go after the Honda/Toyota/Kia/VW smaller sedan market.

    Reply
    1. Tigger

      I thought the last Fusion- by far- was the best looking sedan out there and I would feel the same even today.

      Reply
      1. FusionGrl

        Agreed. I own a 2017 Fusion (love it to death). It was my “dream car” at the time of purchase but the last models were well, *chef kiss*. I see TONS of Fusions on the road. It’s been a great car, have had a blast in it thus far and would love to see it come back….so I can get another one. Haha

        Reply
  27. Ryan

    Ford should have tried selling quality sedans for a change. Maybe if they could last over 200k, they might be able to sell them

    Reply
  28. Craig

    I just wonder why Ford can’t import some of the great sedans they offer overseas. Let people order them and import what they sell here. So you may have to wait a few months. No different than waiting for a Maverick.

    Reply
    1. Tigger

      No more Chinese built crap when there’s more than enough capacity of n the US and Canada to build them.

      Reply
  29. 05FordGT

    I was a Ford sedan loyalist for years. And actually I was a Ford salesperson for 23 years (’97-’20 until I left due to Crohn’s disease). For nearly 20 years, my demo was a sedan. Be it a loaded Focus on the early 2000s (those were fun little cars) to every iteration of a Fusion (a really good car for the $$$). Come late 2016, my dealership got bought by a larger local group so my demo was axed (the new company didn’t offer them) so I had to buy a car.

    Leased a Fusion Energi Titanium plug-in hybrid. Loved it. Got 39 mpg and didn’t use a drop of gas to and from work (ran on EV). Lease was up and got another, which I got even better mileage (41 mpg). But once I left work due to my ailing health, I kept tabs on what I could do replace it. I’m NOT an SUV person. Don’t have kids or large pets, so don’t need one. And I’m also NOT an F150 buyer. Especially at what they cost. Wound up ordering a 2023 (because they shut down the 2022 orders so early) Maverick hybrid.

    Had to extend my Fusion lease 18 months while I waited the 13 months for it go eventually get pulled for build. And I LOVE IT. I don’t really consider it a truck. It’s really a continuation of the Fusion (it is unibody) with a little bed on the back. Had Ford kept a sedan, I would have gotten it IN A MINUTE. Had Ford NOT made the Maverick, I would have left the brand and probably gotten the Hyundai Elantra hybrid. And I’m from a lifelong Ford family and I own a 2006 Mustang GT I bought new.

    Today, the only car Ford sells is the Mustang. Everything else is either an SUV or a truck. I’m glad I don’t sell them anymore as I’m not passionate about those types of vehicles. I loved the sedans Ford had offered. Even if some were so so. At least it gave a customer choices. Today, your choice is to buy from another brand, if one wants a good old fashioned 4-door sedan. Farley is missing the boat. I still see loads of Civics, Accorda, Camrys, Elantras, K5s (a cool sporty car for a good price) and even some Stingers.

    What does Ford have to order? NOTHING! Buy a Bronco Sport or better yet, they want you to buy a $50k+ Bronco. NEWSFLASH Jim, not everyone can afford your high priced products. I’m thankful the Maverick exists, but they are already shifting the price higher and higher each model year (hybrid no longer the standard drivetrain for 2024 as it’s a $1,500 option). Soon the truck I only paid $27,750 for (XLT Hybrid with Lux Pkg, & remote start) will be in the mid $30k range. That for a lot of people is too much. Add with it, horrific lease deals, and you get a vehicle that you have to buy and not lease. Farley is delusional if he things no one wants a sedan. Maybe be should stop racing on his off time and do some homework. Or better yet, maybe the Board can get someone in who wants to actually offer attractive and affordable CARS!!

    Reply
  30. Tigger

    A lot of the posts here describe the wait times people are enduring to get the vehicle they want. I wonder how many sales Ford (and GM for that matter) are loosing because there is no inventory for those who want or need a vehicle today?

    Reply
  31. Timothy

    I don’t believe Sedans are the issue for loosing billions, it’s jumping into the EV market with the allocation of billions of dollars without realistic roadmap to make any money on them. For the sake of being Green, Ford mortgaged their future and bet on EVs. Toyato again ate our lunch and invested in Hybrids and just now are looking at having a few vehicles that will be just EVs. The billions Toyota will help them with sales and quality which is the gold standard in the automotive sector. When will we learn!

    Reply
  32. Jonny Chi

    Americans are remarkably ignorant about automobiles. Things like premium gasoline has more power than regular. Cars need to be warmed up before they can be driven. Turbochargers need to cool down before the car can be shut off. No wonder they get ripped off all the time.

    Reply
  33. J

    If Ford doesn’t jump on the opportunity to take over the market Dodge just left wide open by failing the Challenger and Charger they would be crazy! The new Charger is dumb and no V8. Being back the Falcon or Thunderbird nameplate and make a 4 door and drop both efficient motors in some and power makers in some and sell it. I don’t see how they can claim Fusion lost money because they were everywhere and even had 2 facilities producing them, so cannot claim there was lack of demand. A Fusion should return, and a performance 4 door should be created…

    Reply
    1. Patrick Paoletta

      Seems odd to me that all non domestic auto manufacturers make sedans successfully, Europe and Asia. My 2011 Ford Taurus Limited was such an underrated and undermarketed vehicle. The best car I have ever owned and can’t buy a new one. I’m not interested in SUVs so will need to leave Ford.

      Reply
  34. Kevin

    I looked at Ford sedans a few years ago. They seemed nice but transmission problems were a common problem according to multiple car review websites. GM sedans of the time had either electrical issues or engine issues. THIS is why I went and bought am import car. THIS is why they were really losing money on sedans. There are still plenty of people who prefer sedans, like me. Look at the growth of the number of Hyundais and Kias on the road since the domestic auto makers abandoned the segment. They are missing out on profits by not being able to put out a desirable and reliable car.

    Reply

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