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GM, Ford Vehicle Sales Blazing in China

Makers posted record results for first six months.

by on Jul.08, 2014

With cars like the Focus selling well, Ford set a sales record for the first six months in China this year.

General Motors, Ford and their joint venture partners posted record sales in China for the first half of the 2014, capping off the period with a strong showing in June.

GM’s sales in China in the first six months increased 10.5% from last year’s previous record for the period to 1.73 million units. In June, GM’s sales increased 9.1%. Ford China reported a 35% increase for the first six months of 2014, selling 549,256 vehicles. Ford China’s June sales increased 17%, the automaker reported.

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“GM has experienced growth in demand for our products across China this year, especially at the higher end of our lineup and in the SUV/MPV segment,” said Matt Tsien, GM executive vice president and president of GM China. “We anticipate sales remaining strong through the end of 2014, as more people – particularly outside China’s major cities – become first-time vehicle buyers.” (more…)

New Explorer? Everest Concept Has Tongues Wagging

Seven-passenger SUV designed for global markets.

by on Mar.26, 2014

The Ford Everest Concept has people wondering if it could be a replacement for the Explorer in the U.S.

Is change in the wind for the Ford Explorer? Many are wondering after getting a look at its latest concept, the Everest.

On display at the 35th annual Bangkok International Motor Show, the Everest concept is a large, truck-based, seven-passenger SUV. Adding fuel to the “is it the next Explorer” fire is that it’s been cleared for production outside the U.S. It will be built in Thailand and sold in the maker’s Asian markets as well as Australia.

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“The Everest concept represents out vision of a global Ford vehicle with regional heritage that will allow customers to take on the world,” the maker said in a statement. “(It is a) bold new direction that we envision for a midsize, seven-seat SUV.” (more…)

Ford Racing to Catch Up in China and Other Asian Markets

Detroit’s second-largest maker wants to be one of Asia’s Big Three.

by on Oct.09, 2013

David Schoch, (r), president of Ford's Asia/Pacific operations, with CEO Alan Mulally and Joginder Singh, head of Ford India, during a news conference announcing export plans from Ford India.

Ford Motor Co. is racing to make up for lost time after getting off to a late start in the booming Chinese market. And with demand surging 51% since the beginning of the year, the Detroit maker is rapidly expanding both its product line-up and production capacity in a bid to catch up with key competitors like General Motors and Volkswagen AG.

Ford still has a long way to go.  While it was an early participant in other markets in the Asia/Pacific region, it initially steered clear of China – which is expected to see sales of 17 million vehicles this year and as many as 32 million by 2020, according to consensus forecasts. As a result, it lags way behind market leaders in terms of both sales and capacity.

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But the president of the Asia/Pacific region, Ford veteran David Schoch notes that the maker is clearly heading in the right direction. It turned a 2012 loss into a $183 million profit for the first half of this year, and says Schoch, “by mid-decade I do expected Asia/Pacific to be a major contributor to Ford’s (total) profits.”


Ford Says “Ni Hao” to Chinese Financing

Maker aims to bolster lagging Chinese operations – while lowering U.S. costs.

by on Mar.16, 2012

CEO Mulally turns to China for financial assistance.

Ford Motor Co. is trying something new to bolster operations in China. To help support the company’s strategy in China, Ford has announced it’s selling renminbi (RMB)-denominated bonds for the first time. The issue was aimed at investors in Hong Kong, Singapore and elsewhere outside the United States, with total proceeds of $158 million.

“We are pleased with this transaction and appreciate the actions taken by regulators in China that have opened the RMB capital markets for global issuers like Ford,” said Neil Schloss, Ford vice president and treasurer. “This offering was an opportunity for Ford to fund business operations in China while expanding our global investor base.”

Ford was late to the Chinese market, especially when compared to key competitors such as General Motors and Volkswagen, which now dominate that booming market.  Its challenge is to establish a niche in the market – with the maker putting an emphasis on regions of China just beginning to share the economic boom first seen along the Pacific Coast.


Meanwhile, Ford has succeeded in negotiating a new line of credit in the U.S. on what it says are more favorable terms. Ford went heavily into debt as the recent economic downturn began – a savvy move in hindsight considering what happened to its cash-starved Detroit rivals. But it is now trying to improve its balance sheet without the benefits that GM and Chrysler got through bankruptcy.


Ford More Than Doubling Chinese Product Line-Up

Maker planning 23 new products across Asia, 15 for China.

by on Jun.17, 2011

Joe Hinrichs, president of Ford Asia Pacific and Africa.

With Asia expected to be the engine of its future growth, Ford has outlined an aggressive product roll-out that will put 23 new models in its line-up by mid-decade, with the majority of those earmarked for China, now the world’s largest automotive market.

Ford currently holds just 2.6% of the Chinese car market, largely due to a late start, barely one-sixth the share held by its rival General Motors.  But catching up in China – as well in India and other parts of Asia – will be critical to the recently-announced growth plan outlined by Ford CEO Alan Mulally, which calls for the maker to jump from 5.2 million sales annually to 8 million. Last year, the Asia/Pacific region accounted for just 15% of Ford’s global volume, but the maker believes it can push that closer to a full one-third.

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Of the 15 new cars planned for China and eight targeting India, the vast majority will be aimed at the smallest and lowest-priced market segments, according to Joe Hinrichs, head of the maker’s Asian operations, below the current subcompact Fiesta.  That means less than $14,500 in China, and $8,500 in India, which was recently projected to become the world’s third-largest automotive market by the end of the decade. (For more on that story, Click Here.)

“For Ford, if you want to grow the business and be competitive in China, we have to have a product portfolio that plays where the volume is,” said Hinrichs.


Ford Reportedly Aiming For Huge Bump in Sales

Maker sees the future in Asia.

by on Jun.07, 2011

Ford CEO Mulally is expected to announce plans to push for a 50% global sales bump.

Ford Motor Co. will aim to boost its global sales by as much as 50% by mid-decade, CEO Alan Mulally is expected to announce today.

That would see its sales jump from 5.3 million last year to around 8 million, putting it on a par with industry giants like General Motors, Volkswagen and the 800-pound gorilla of the auto world, Toyota, which sold 8.42 million vehicles in 2010.

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Though Ford is looking at growth in all its key markets, including North and South America, as well as Europe, Mulally is expected to put an emphasis on its Asia-Pacific-Africa division, according to a report in the New York Times.  Currently, those regions account for 15% of total Ford volumes worldwide, but the maker expects to bump that to a full third by 2020.

“We’re clearly transitioning into a growth mode after going through a horrific recession and industry collapse,” Mulally told the Times. “We are now positioned to serve customers where the market is growing.”