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Ford suspends new EV models after further losses

  • Market: Battery materials
  • 24/06/24

US carmaker Ford has decided to hold back the release of new battery electric vehicle (BEV) models after heavy costs for its existing BEV models forced it to restructure its sales programme.

Ford will open up its range of BEVs to all dealerships in the US on 1 July, ending a programme it started in 2022 under which only "certified" dealerships could exclusively sell its EVs.

Under programme, which included vehicles such as the Mustang Mach-E sport utility vehicle (SUV), the F-150 Lightning pick-up and the E-Transit van, Ford required "certified" or "certified elite" dealerships to make significant investments in charging infrastructure and customer service.

Ford also required dealerships to display their prices on Ford's website, making it difficult for them to make significant mark-ups for EVs in high demand but with limited availability.

"We will not launch a second-gen [EV] product unless it's profitable within the first year and we are going to get a return on that capital we're investing," chief financial officer John Lawler said. Ford announced plans in April for an electric truck in 2026 and a three-row SUV in 2027, delayed from 2025.

The firm sold 20,223 EVs in the first quarter of this year — up by 86pc on the year — making it the second best-selling EV brand in the US behind Tesla.

Tesla posted a 13.3pc fall in sales, down to 140,187 units in the same period. Overall EV sales in the US edged up by just 2.6pc to 268,909 units in the first quarter.

Despite strong sales at Ford, the firm posted losses of $1.3bn before interest and taxes from its EV segment during the period, or just over $64,000 for each EV sold, owing to heavy costs.

The firm has had to cut prices this year to compete with Tesla, including focusing on smaller, cheaper EVs. The firm also announced delays in EV investments last year worth $12bn, including scaling back plans at its Michigan battery plant.

Ford's BEV sales increased by 88pc in January-May on the year to 37,208 units, ahead of 50.9pc for its hybrid vehicles and diesel and gasoline (internal combustion) models (see graph)

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Ford Jan-May car sales by propulsion

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China's Sunwoda plans $275mn battery plant in Vietnam


18/07/24
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18/07/24

China's Sunwoda plans $275mn battery plant in Vietnam

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Vietnam’s Vinfast cuts EV sales goal, delays US plant


15/07/24
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15/07/24

Vietnam’s Vinfast cuts EV sales goal, delays US plant

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11/07/24
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11/07/24

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BP to expand EV charging to US malls


10/07/24
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10/07/24

BP to expand EV charging to US malls

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