Ford’s Jim Farley has been promoted to chief operating officer as part of a shakeup at the top of the automaker’s executive management team.

Ford Motor Co.’s senior management team has just undertaken a major shakeup with Jim Farley named to a new post, chief operating officer, while Joe Hinrichs, president, Automotive, is retiring as the automaker’s Creating Tomorrow Together strategic plan continues to roll on.

“Jim Farley is the right person to take on this important new role,” Ford President and CEO Jim Hackett said in a release. “Jim’s passion for great vehicles and his intense drive for results are well known. He also has developed into a transformational leader with the imagination and foresight to help lead Ford into the future.”

Hackett is hosting a press conference to discuss the surprise changes at the top and what it all means. will provide additional information after the event.

(Disastrous fourth quarter hurts Ford’s full-year earnings.)

Hinrichs has been with Ford for 19 years. Prior to that, he had roles with General Motors, auto suppliers and a private equity firm. In the release, Hackett described Hinrichs’ tenure as “successful” and thanked him for his time and effort at the automaker.

Joe Hinrichs, Ford president, Automotive, is retiring after 19 years with the automaker.

Farley, 57, joined Ford in 2007 as global head of Marketing and Sales and has steadily been moved up the ranks to other posts, including being the top executive at Lincoln, Ford South America, Ford of Europe and all Ford global markets in successive roles.

Since April, Farley has led Ford’s New Businesses, Technology & Strategy team, helping the company determine how to capitalize on the powerful forces reshaping the industry – such as software platforms, connectivity, AI, automation and new forms of propulsion.

(Ford settles class-action suit with Fiesta, Focus owners.)

Farley now will lead Ford’s drive to strengthen its Automotive operations and deliver a sustainable global EBIT margin of at least 8 percent. He will oversee all of Ford’s global markets and automotive operations, including Product Development; Purchasing; Enterprise Product Line Management; Manufacturing & Labor Affairs; Marketing, Sales & Service; and Quality & New Model Launch.

Hau Thai-Tang, Ford’s product development chief, is taking on additional responsibilities.

He also will retain leadership of Ford Smart Mobility, Ford’s AV LLC and Ford’s partnership with Argo AI.

“I’m thrilled and humbled by the opportunity to work with Jim Hackett and the entire Ford team to advance our vision to design increasingly intelligent vehicles and connect them to the world around us, all to make life better for our customers and communities,” Farley said. “Ford is blessed with great people and an incredible brand, and together we will build a very bright future.”

(Ford sales dropped in 2019 despite strong truck results.)

In addition, Ford announced that Hau Thai-Tang, chief product development and purchasing officer, will take on an expanded role, reporting to Farley. Thai-Tang, 53, will continue to lead Product Development and Purchasing, while adding responsibility for Enterprise Product Line Management and connectivity.

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