Thank the Ranger and Bronco.
It's been over two years since Ford made the dramatic announcement to discontinue traditional cars from its US lineup, save for the Mustang. The Ford Fiesta, Focus, Fusion, and Taurus will all be dropped with no replacements planned. Ford's reason for doing so was to free up funds for new trucks and SUVs as well as future electric vehicles and mobility development. The Ford Mustang Mach-E is just one example.
With the Focus and also the C-Max MPV now out of the picture, the Michigan Assembly Plant where the two were built has additional space available. Ford Ranger production is already happening there and, starting in 2021, the all-new Bronco will join it.
According to Motor Trend, the combined Ranger-Bronco production will allow the plant to generate an additional $1 billion in annual profit compared to when it built cars. That's a serious chunk of change and anyone who previously doubted Ford's car-killing decision should take notice.
"The decision was worth a billion at that plant starting next year," said Hau Thai-Tang, Ford's chief product development and purchasing officer. "We made a decision that we would exit traditional passenger sedans, and we took the money we would have used to update them and used it to bring new products like Bronco and Bronco Sport to market."
Already this strategy is paying off. Not only have Ranger sales remained solid and continue to grow, but the new Bronco and Bronco Sport are instantly popular.
In fact, not only has Ford's online Bronco reservation system been overwhelmed by those throwing down $100 deposits, but the Bronco First Edition was sold out within a few hours. The Mustang Mach-E is also on track to be a smashing success having received plenty of early online reservations itself.
Discontinuing traditional cars was no doubt a risky move on Ford's part and more than a few sets of eyebrows were raised, but now it appears the Blue Oval is on track to have the last laugh.