Dearborn, Michigan – Despite the global pandemic that sapped automotive sales worldwide during Q2, Ford Motor Co. earned $2.4 billion in Q3, a 6x improvement from a year ago and strong enough numbers to keep the automaker profitable for the full year.
“We know that there’s huge value to be unlocked as we turn around our automotive operations,” said Ford President and CEO Jim Farley. “There will be additional opportunity when we start growing again, which we will do with products and services customers can’t resist.”
Pickups, primarily the long-time best-selling F-150, were responsible for the bulk of the profits. While overall unit sales were down for the company, revenues were higher because trucks are more expensive. They’re also easier to build, so the cost of materials fell. Lower costs plus higher revenues is a pretty easy formula to generate higher profits.
Farley rolled out a restructuring plan in early October to grow Ford’s sales volumes, a plan that depends on key product launches later this year and throughout the next few years. The company’s profits have lagged its peers, especially General Motors, and as the new boss, Farley is under pressure to show improvement.
“We haven’t suddenly fixed the issues in our automotive business, but we have a clear turnaround plan to get that done,” Farley said. “That work is underway and we’re making progress.”
In the fourth quarter, Ford is launching an updated F-150, including a hybrid electric-powered version; the Bronco Sport, the first of several Bronco-branded SUVs; and the all-electric Mustang Mach-E. Farley said electric vehicles are fundamental to the company’s future across its lineup – including in commercial vehicles, and the Lincoln line. Ford will reveal a new, all-electric Transit van for global markets in November.
“By the end of the year, customers will be able to choose from 12 hybrid and fully electric vehicles around the globe and there is much more to come, including developing a complete EV ecosystem,” Farley said. “We intend to set Ford apart in EVs with capabilities that reach across our product portfolio, like an all-electric F-150 in 2022 that will be a rugged and affordable work pickup, not just a lifestyle vehicle.”