And nobody even noticed.
It wasn’t long ago when Ford dropped the bombshell that it’s killing off most of its passenger cars by 2022 to focus on SUVs and pickup trucks. But we weren’t expecting the company to put its plan into action so soon. After a Ford spokesperson recently outlined each model’s life expectancy, Automotive News reports that production of the Focus and C-Max ended last Friday at the company’s factory in Michigan. A Focus sedan and C-Max hybrid were the last cars to roll off the production line.
Tellingly, there was no fanfare or ceremony like you would expect to see when a long-running model wraps up production, despite the significance of both cars. Sadly, these deaths were inevitable. US sales of the Focus have fallen every year since its peak of 245,922 in 2012, and deliveries are off 3.7 percent so far in 2018. C-Max sales hit a peak of 35,210 in 2013 but fell by nearly half to 18,390 last year. Sales have plummeted another 29 percent through April. Ford reportedly loses $800 million a year selling small cars in North America because customers keep favoring larger SUVs and pickups, so it makes business sense to cut costs and scrap them.
The Focus will still live on in America, albeit with only one variant: the high-riding Focus Active, which will be imported from China. The Mustang has also been spared, but the rest of Ford’s lineup will consist of vans, crossovers, SUVs, and pickup trucks. New models such as the Ranger pickup and reborn Bronco will fill in the gaps left by the Fusion, Fiesta, Taurus, C-Max and Focus.