Ford is to split its vehicle business into two distinct units, Ford Model e and Ford Blue.
The former will be dedicated to the development and launch of clean-sheet EVs and technologies such as inverters, motors and batteries, as well as undertaking work on software and connected car platforms; Ford Blue will continue development of model lines such as the F-Series, Ranger and Maverick trucks, Bronco and Explorer SUVs, and Mustang sports models. It will also be responsible for supporting Ford Model e through global-scale engineering, purchasing, manufacturing and vehicle test and development capabilities.
“This isn’t the first time Ford has reimagined the future and taken our own path,” said Ford executive chair Bill Ford. “We have an extraordinary opportunity to lead this thrilling new era of connected and electric vehicles, give our customers the very best of Ford, and help make a real difference for the health of the planet.”
Last May, Ford president and CEO Jim Farley introduced the Ford+ plan, calling it the company’s biggest opportunity for growth and value creation since Henry Ford scaled production of the Model T. The formation of two distinct, but strategically interdependent, auto businesses – Ford Blue and Ford Model e – together with the new Ford Pro business, will, Ford hopes, help unleash the full potential of the plan, with the company hoping to outperform both legacy auto makers and new EV competitors.
“We have made tremendous progress in a short period of time. We have launched a series of hit products globally and demand for our new EVs like F-150 Lightning and Mustang Mach-E is off the charts,” Farley said. “But our ambition with Ford+ is to become a truly great, world-changing company again, and that requires focus. We are going all in, creating separate but complementary businesses that give us start-up speed and unbridled innovation in Ford Model e together with Ford Blue’s industrial know-how, volume and iconic brands like Bronco, that startups can only dream about.”
According to Ford, a key catalyst for the change was a recognition that different approaches, talents and, ultimately, organizations are required for the development and delivery of electric and digitally connected vehicles and services and to fully capitalize on the company’s existing family of internal combustion vehicles.
“Ford Model e will be Ford’s center of innovation and growth, a team of the world’s best software, electrical and automotive talent turned loose to create truly incredible electric vehicles and digital experiences for new generations of Ford customers,” Farley said.
“Ford Blue’s mission is to deliver a more profitable and vibrant ICE business, strengthen our successful and iconic vehicle families and earn greater loyalty by delivering incredible service and experiences. It’s about harnessing a century of hardware mastery to help build the future. This team will be hell-bent on delivering leading quality, attacking waste in every corner of the business, maximizing cash flow and optimizing our industrial footprint.”
Ford Model e and Ford Blue will be run as distinct businesses, but also support each other – as well as the newly created Ford Pro unit, which is dedicated to delivering a one-stop shop for commercial and government customers with a range of conventional and electric vehicles and a full suite of software, charging, financing, services and support on Ford and non-Ford products.