About three-quarters of sales of those two are from other brands.
Ford is a hot brand right now. Besides it's Mustang still winning the pony car competitions year over year, it's revived Bronco is being delivered and the groundbreaking F-150 Lightning EV pickup is just around the corner. That's why when we heard that it made a profit in the second quarter, even during the semiconductor shortage, we weren't surprised.
What did surprise us is that a full 70% of the 125,000 orders it has for the Bronco are conquests. A conquest is when a buyer from another brand switches to yours. The F-150 Lightning had an even more impressive conquest stat of 80%.
That means that of its Bronco orders (and we're not talking Bronco Sport here), more than 87,000 were driving something not related to the Blue Oval. For the F-150 Lightning, 96,000 owners came from other brands. CEO Jim Farley wouldn't comment on which models in particular the SUV and pickup are stealing sales from, but we can make some educated guesses.
For the Bronco, one would assume it has to be the Jeep Wrangler and Jeep-related vehicles. But the Wrangler is coming off its best US sales quarter ever. Jeep moved about 70,000 Wranglers in April, May and June. Ford sold about half that of Broncos. That makes us think that Ford isn't cutting into Jeep's pie, it's just that the pie of people driving off-road-centric SUVs just got bigger. And that makes sense. When the news is depressing, people want the opportunity to get out, get away and do something.
Jeep CEO Christian Meunier doesn't sound worried, telling The Detroit News that "there is a craving for freedom to make you go anywhere. I think Bronco is going to be a good competitor, a solid competitor, we don't deny that. At the same time, it puts us on our toes. It forces us to be better and better and better."
The Ford F-150 is the most popular truck in the US. It's been that way for 44 consecutive years, so we knew the Lightning was going to do well. But 80% conquest sales is extremely impressive. The truck numbers are big and hard to break down, but Ram and Chevy/GMC seem likely conquest candidates. But looking at the numbers in May and June after the Lightning was officially revealed, there's barely a dip for either of those trucks.
That leads us to believe that the new sheetmetal from Ford isn't stealing sales from its direct competitors. It's stealing them from different segments. And that does make sense. There's certainly a contingent of people driving midsize or large SUVs that could see themselves in an electric pickup, especially with the kind of range and capability Ford is promising. And the same goes for the Bronco. We could easily see compact and midsize crossover owners opting for something with a little more ruggedness, especially in this current global climate.
The true test will be once both the pandemic and chip shortage are over, then we can get back to comparing numbers equally, without any bias. Once these prices recede to normal levels, it'll be a great time for buyers.