One Ford plan evolving to cut costs


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“This is not saying One Ford was wrong. This is building on the strategy of One Ford.” Hau Thai-Tang, Ford

DETROIT — One Ford helped the automaker survive the Great Recession. But the company’s current leadership says that’s no longer enough.

Beyond reducing costs and using common global parts, former CEO Alan Mulally’s One Ford plan helped whittle the automaker’s global architectures from 30 to nine.

Ford is now reducing that number even more, transitioning to just five modular vehicle platforms in the coming years, as it looks to slash $25.5 billion in costs over the next five years.

“This is not saying One Ford was wrong. This is building on the strategy of One Ford and evolving from it,” Hau Thai-Tang, Ford’s head of product development and purchasing, said last week during a presentation to the 2018 J.P. Morgan Auto Conference in New York.

While One Ford helped the company achieve global scale, Thai-Tang said it didn’t get the desired scale on the regional or local level.

Moving to five platforms will help save costs and boost the efficiency of Ford’s supply base, he said. Thai-Tang said up to 70 percent of a vehicle’s value can be managed through a modular approach.

Moving forward, each of the automaker’s vehicles will be on one of the following platforms: rear-wheel-drive/all-wheel-drive body-on-frame; front-wheel-drive/awd unibody; commercial van unibody; rwd/awd unibody; and a unibody platform for battery-electric vehicles.

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