DEARBORN – Ford Motor Company next year will launch 23 new vehicles to customers around the world, open three more manufacturing facilities and add more than 5,000 new jobs in the United States to meet growing demand for its products.
“Next year, we are embarking on our most ambitious global launch year ever to meet customer demand for our products around the world,” said Raj Nair, group vice president, Ford global product development. “We are investing even more through our One Ford plan to serve more customers, in more segments – and deliver profitable growth.”
The growth in 2014 will come on the heels of a strong year for Ford in 2013. The company saw growth due to having the freshest product lineup in the industry while adding more jobs. Ford expects its global launches next year to more than double those of 2013.
Ford is on pace in 2013 to produce 6 million vehicles, or about 16 vehicles per minute around the world. This momentum is led by Ford Focus, the world’s best-selling single nameplate, which is on track to reach 1.1 million sales this year.
Ford’s gains also are coming from the small utility segment. Globally, utilities are expected to grow at almost twice the rate of the overall industry during the next five years.
In the United States, Ford is the best-selling brand of utility for the third straight year, outpacing its nearest competitor through November by 31 percent. Utility sales are led by Ford Escape, which delivered its best annual sales record this year through November – with still another month left. Escape has sold more than 271,000 units, surpassing in 2013 its record sales year of 261,008 vehicles.
Sales also remain strong for Ford F-Series, which is on track to be the best-selling pickup for 37 years. F-Series sales are up 20 percent through November; Ford expects to sell more than 730,000 F-Series trucks this year.
Ford’s U.S. market share is growing at a faster rate than any of its competitors, rising five-tenths of a percentage point through November. The midsize sedan segment is contributing to these gains, with Ford Fusion selling at record levels and sales up 22 percent this year.
2014: An unprecedented product year in North America
Ford Motor Company expects its product momentum to intensify in 2014 with 16 new vehicle launches in North America, including Lincoln. These new vehicles include Ford Mustang, Ford Transit Connect, Ford Transit and Lincoln MKC. In all, Ford expects to have about three times the number of product launches next year in North America than in 2013.
“We saw unprecedented growth in the United States this year, especially in the midsize and utility segments,” said Joe Hinrichs, Ford president of The Americas. “With the addition of 16 new products to our showroom, including Ford Mustang, our momentum continues.”
Production of the all-new Transit will begin in second-quarter 2014 at Ford’s newly retooled Kansas City Assembly Plant. Ford is investing $1.1 billion to retool and expand the facility.
Kansas City Assembly Plant will add more than 2,000 jobs – more than 1,000 of which are new hires – to support high demand for Ford F-150 plus production of the all-new Transit family of commercial vehicles starting next summer.
Global growth in jobs and manufacturing
In Asia Pacific Africa, Ford sold its 1 millionth vehicle in October. In the third quarter, Ford’s market share in its fastest-growing region increased six-tenths of a percentage point, to 3.7 percent. In China, the company’s market share grew to a record 4.3 percent in the third quarter, up eight-tenths of a percentage point, reflecting very strong sales of Kuga, EcoSport and Focus.
“Our strategy in Asia Pacific is to serve our customers with even more One Ford products, and to increase our capacity to provide these great products with manufacturing hubs in China, India and ASEAN,” said Dave Schoch, group vice president and president, Ford Asia Pacific. “With more products, plants and people, in 2014 we will take another significant step in the implementation of our Asia Pacific growth plan.”
To support the onslaught of new products, Ford will open three new manufacturing facilities – two of them in Asia Pacific and one in South America.
Next year, Ford is on track to open its Changan Ford Assembly Plant No. 3 and Changan Transmission Plant in Chongqing, China, as well as Camaçari Engine Plant in Brazil. The new Chongqing Assembly Plant will increase the company’s production capacity in China by 300,000 units next year.
“This is the fastest and most aggressive manufacturing expansion the company has undergone in 50 years,” said John Fleming, executive vice president, Ford global manufacturing. “The last time Ford was growing like this, Dwight D. Eisenhower was the U.S. president.”
To fuel this growth, Ford plans to hire more than 6,000 employees in Asia next year, the vast majority of them hourly employees. Similarly, in the United States, Ford expects to create more than 5,000 new jobs, including 3,300 salaried positions, the largest hiring initiative since 2000. In the past two years, the company has created more than 14,000 jobs in North America alone.
More than 80 percent of the new salaried jobs will be technical professionals who work in product development, manufacturing, quality and IT.
More fuel efficiency and driver-assist technologies
In 2014, Ford also will continue its major global shift to provide customers with more fuel efficiency technologies.
Ford’s EcoBoost® engine family, which delivers fuel efficiency and performance, adds two new offerings next year – a new 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine and one soon to be named. Ford’s award-winning 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine offered in Ford Fiesta goes on sale in North America for the first time. With a fuel economy rating of 45 mpg highway, Fiesta with the 1.0-liter EcoBoost is the most fuel-efficient non-hybrid vehicle available in America.
Fuel efficiency technologies, such as Auto Start-Stop, also will be offered on more Ford vehicles in North America. The feature is currently available on Ford Fusion. It will spread to Ford’s highest-volume products, covering 70 percent of the company’s North America volume and reflecting progress toward Ford’s Blueprint for Sustainability to increase fuel efficiency.
Similarly, Ford’s success in hybrids – selling more than 80,000 through November – is expected to continue. In 2014, Ford plans to add more than 400 new positions to its powertrain engineering team, including approximately 100 new hybrid and electrified vehicle engineers.
Ford also is expanding its technology offerings, including new driver-assist features such as perpendicular park. These build on Ford’s current leadership in driver-assist technologies, which today include:
• Active park assist, which can ease the stress of parallel parking by using sensors and the steering system to guide a vehicle into a parking spot; the driver controls the gas and brake pedals. It is available on 12 Ford models today
• Lane-Keeping System, which uses a forward-facing camera that can scan the road surface for lane markings. The system can evaluate if the vehicle is drifting out of its lane and then alert the driver by vibrating the steering wheel. If the driver does not respond to the vibrations, the system provides steering torque to nudge the vehicle back toward the center of the lane. The system is available on 11 Ford models today
• Adaptive cruise control and collision warning with brake support, which uses radar to detect moving vehicles immediately ahead, and can modify cruising speed if necessary. The feature is available on 10 Ford models today
• Blind Spot Information System, which uses radar sensors in the rear corners that monitor the spaces next to and just behind the vehicle. On the road, these sensors trigger a warning light in the mirror when there is another vehicle in the driver’s blind spot. BLIS® is available on 13 Ford models today