Published: Thu, April 26, 2018
Sports | By Brooke Harris

Only 2 car models to remain at Ford's North American dealerships


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".

"We're going to feed the healthy part of our business and deal decisively with areas that destroy value", Hackett said on an earnings call Wednesday. Fiat Chrysler did away with the Dodge Dart and Chrysler 200 more than a year ago.

Ford said the only cars it will keep in North America beyond their current generations are the Mustang and the Focus Active arriving in 2019.

Ford has been making sedans pretty much since the design was developed in the 1920s, so the move is quite a dramatic shift in strategy for the oldest-surviving USA vehicle company.

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"Everything is on the table", Shanks said in a statement to The Detroit News. In a separate post on Medium, Ford CEO Jim Farley said Ford's trucks and SUVs will soon become 86 percent of the company's US volume.

In a region where SUVs accounted for 33.5% of the total passenger auto market during March, according to JATO figures, the Kuga has become Ford's third best-selling product. Models like the Taurus, Fiesta, Fusion, C-Max, and Focus sedans will be discontinued in a few years.

Ford is widening its hybrid drivetrain line-up to include the Escape SUV, sold as the Kuga in Europe, amid declining demand for diesel engines in the region.

"For Ford, doubling down on trucks and SUVs could be just what the brand needs", Jessica Caldwell, an analyst for Edmunds.com, said in an email.

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The decision to eliminate the entire sedan lineup in North America is drastic to say the least as even Fiat Chrysler Automobiles chose to keep the Chrysler 300 and Dodge Charger when it chose to focus on trucks and SUVs.

Ford CFO Bob Shanks said small cars and "most Lincoln products" are among those losing money.

Ford will, however, continue to offer its full gamut of trucks, SUVs and crossovers. "But most people aren't expecting it until late 2019 or 2020 and that brings up the wild card of, 'Will we be in a recession by then?'" The hand-wringing maybe that has been around in our business is gone. "We're starting to understand what we need to do and are making clear decisions".

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