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Ford “On Track” for European Turnaround

Maker betting on product blitz, cost cuts to be in black by 2015.

by on Jul.09, 2014

Ford's European chief Stephen Odell.

With the European automotive market showing signs of an upturn after its worst slump in a quarter century, Ford Motor Co. is growing increasingly confident in the aggressive turnaround plan it launched during the depths of the downturn.

The maker’s sales have been outpacing the overall industry recovery, and while some automotive analysts believe Ford of Europe might actually break even for 2014 the maker is, for now, sticking with guidance promising to “improve” its financial situation this year, while projecting “profitability” in 2015. Ford lost $1.4 billion in Europe last year.

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The plan is “on track,” said Ford of Europe president Stephen Odell, during a media roundtable on Thursday. “We are very, very pleased with where we are in our European transformation plan.”

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Ford Sees Light at End of European Tunnel

Maker remains committed to be back in black by 2015.

by on Jul.12, 2013

Ford's European chief Stephen Odell believes the maker is finally back on track and headed for a 2015 break-even.

Europe’s car market has been akin to a black hole for the past for the past six years, leaving manufacturers desperate to find a way out of the morass.  Ford Motor Co. has been one of the hardest-hit, last year running $1.7 billion into the red on the Continent.

Nevertheless, the maker insists it is finally seeing some positive signs in Europe. “It’s beginning to show signs of stability,” said Stephen Odell , executive vice president and president of Europe, Middle East and Africa, during a Thursday evening a briefing at Ford’s suburban Detroit headquarters. Those signs indicate the market for new vehicles in the Euro zone has finally stopped shrinking, though Odell stressed that does not mean a swift turnaround.

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“The European market should start growing next year,” Odell said, adding the growth will be slow and modest over the next several years. “I don’t see a V-shaped recovery. The GDP growth will be slow,” he said. “But most of the indices are pointing towards recovery,” he said.

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Striking Evos Concept Will Reshape Face of Next Ford Fusion

by on Sep.13, 2011

Though not slated for production, the design cues of the Ford Evos Concept will reappear - starting with the 2013 Ford Fusion and Mondeo.

Officially, the new Ford Evos is nothing more than a concept vehicle.  The sporty gullwinged 4-door debuting today at the Frankfurt Motor Show today won’t be going into production.  But if it strikes your fancy, hang tight.  Many of the most appealing design cues will soon reappear at a nearby Ford showroom, senior company officials tell TheDetroitBureau.com, starting with a new model launching at the North American International Auto Show next January.

While Ford’s global design chief J Mays and other officials were cagey when pressed on the future of the new Evos “design language” – Mays hinting we might see more in four months or so – unimpeachable sources confirmed that this would, indeed, translate into a major launch at the Detroit Auto Show.  And the first new model to bring the Evos’ design cues to life will be the next-generation Ford Fusion – which be sold in most other markets as the Ford Mondeo.

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“We’re at the crossroads,” announced design director Mays during a sneak preview of the Evos, which is meant to be a significant evolution of Ford’s kinetic sculpture design language – which is itself most visible on new models like the Focus and Fiesta.  The goal is to come up with a look that is “more than just fun-to-drive,” said Mays, but which also provides a sense of the high technology  Ford is engineering into its products.

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