THE CAR COACH REPORTS:
September 16, 2016
Headed to Old Mexico Edition
In a nonsurprise, Ford announced what many, if not all, auto industry folks knew. Ford is moving its small car production to Mexico: http://www.freep.com/story/money/cars/ford/2016/09/14/mexico-ford-shiftng-us-car-production-mexico/90355146/.
Knee jerk reaction dictates that we throw our hands in the air and howl with rage at more American jobs going to a foreign country. Fine. Yeah. I guess. But maybe we can slow down and put the social media outrage on hold for just a sec.
Is this such a bad idea? “Yes, we are losing American jobs!” is the pat answer. But hear me out. We know that the [small] sedan market is dying a slow, cruel, long death while the SUV and truck market is in the midst of a growth spurt. If you want real time proof, remember FCA’s announcement to kill their small car line altogether or look at VW and its decision a couple of days ago to kill the two-door Golf in the U.S. So we know small cars and even mid-size sedans just aren’t the market. Not just at Ford, but across the industry.
If Ford is telling the truth, the trucks and SUVS—which include a possible Bronco and Ranger—stay in the U.S. Mustang, Taurus are both still made here and the Lincoln Continental will be made in the U.S. The decision is driven by demand, so as they sell more trucks and SUVs, they’ll need workers to fulfill the demand. IF the small cars stay, Ford continues to lose money and would eventually have to cut small car jobs; the actual result being more harmful to the American worker mid- and long term.
Ford also pointed out that, while it is in no hurry to join the autonomous rush, Ford will by 2021 have a self-driver, which would more than likely be a small car and would facilitate small car return to the U.S.
On a side note, the article does include just a little bit of irony in that Ford spent millions to retool its larger SUV factory into a small car factory just six years ago and now will need to revert to SUV production. The market can be fickle.
That fickleness, could be an argument against Ford’s move, but really the decision is made, dollars have bene committed [more importantly] and the train is leaving the station.
But what do you think about Ford’s decision? Is it all doom and gloom or will it be okay?
Post your comments @laurenfix.
Here is an interesting read about the “science” of green lights. http://jalopnik.com/how-to-trigger-a-green-traffic-light-1786648802
I suppose this can be useful to try to get moving a few seconds quicker. Or we could maybe just wait for the light to turn. I mean, if we aren’t sitting at a light for more than a minute is it really going to kill us?
Love Your Car! See you next week!