Ford issues ultimatum to dealers over EV sales – TechCrunch


Ford has given dealers in its network of 3,000 people an ultimatum and a deadline: if they want to sell electric vehicles, they will have to invest their own money in the company, meet other sales standards and add fast charging. at their locations.

Dealers will have until October 31 to decide whether to buy. If they do, they will be allowed to participate in Ford’s Model e business from January 2024. Those who don’t can stick with Ford Blue, the automaker’s internal combustion engine. unity.

The new standards, first discussed during the company’s second-quarter earnings call, are part of a strategy Ford shared Tuesday at its national dealer meeting in Las Vegas. CEO Jim Farley told analysts in July that Ford should cut sales and distribution costs by $2,000 per vehicle to reduce overhead, boost profits and compete with Tesla, which sells directly to consumers. At the time, Farley also described Ford’s plan to move to a low inventory model, the D2C model.

Ford positions this decision as a chance for dealers to take responsibility and significantly increase their sales. The automaker will use about 90% of dealership investment to build charging infrastructure, including DC fast chargers that will allow dealerships to be part of the Blue Oval charging network map, according to a Ford spokesperson, who noted that the concessionaires will own and earn the revenue from the chargers.

According to a Ford spokesperson, Ford dealers will have two entry levels – Certified and Certified Elite – as well as two entry points – 2024 and 2027 – to choose from if they wish to become a Model e dealer.

Certified dealers will pay an initial upfront investment of approximately $500,000 and focus on ownership and billing, with limited, on-order sales. Elite dealers will be asked to invest $1.2 million to manage ownership, load and sales with field inventory, demo units and visibility on Ford’s website.

In order to provide higher service and a smoother transaction experience for the customer, Ford has also set new standards for selling the e model:

  • Ford will form teams specializing in EV sales and service
  • All Model e dealerships will be required to offer charging to support sales and service, and have at least one publicly available DC fast charger on the Blue Oval network.
  • E-commerce will be available with “transparent and non-negotiable prices for electric vehicles”.
  • Customers will be able to access physical experiences, such as test drives, exchanges, mobile services, and pickup and delivery.
  • Dealerships will need to support customers with digital experiences such as software and subscription products.

Ford currently sells the Ford F-150 Lightning pickup, Mustang Mach-E crossover and e-Transit van, with more electric vehicles expected to join the automaker’s lineup in the coming years. In May, Ford increased its electrification spending to $50 billion by 2026.

Tech

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