~ The announcement was made with little fanfare as it was tucked away in the company’s first-quarter financial results. Buried underneath various statistics is a rather blunt statement that the company will “not invest in next generations of traditional Ford sedans for North America.” Models (already long-in-the-tooth) such as the Fusion, Fiesta and Taurus will be phased out over the next few years. The company will keep the Mustang and confirmed plans to launch the all-new Focus Active in North America next year.
Additional crossover-like vehicles are possible as the company noted it is exploring “white space” vehicles that “combine the best attributes of cars and utilities, such as higher ride height, space and versatility”
In a statement, Ford CEO Jim Hackett said “We are committed to taking the appropriate actions to drive profitable growth and maximize the returns of our business over the long term.” He went on to say the company will ‘play where it can win.’
Ford is hedging its bets on the fuel front by adding “hybrid-electric powertrains to high-volume, profitable vehicles like the F-150, Mustang, Explorer, Escape and Bronco.” The company also has plans to launch 16 battery-electric vehicles by 2022.
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