Ford Motor US Sales Drop Again in May. Shakeout Coming?

Ken Zino of on Ford Motor US Sales Drop Again in May. Shakeout Coming?

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Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F) today reported May 2022 U.S. sales results of 154,461 units, a decrease of -4.5% year-over-year. Car sales have declined -45% in the same period. During 2022 sales are off more than -13%.

The disappointing results came as the United Auto Workers and Ford leaders announced plans to add more than 6200 new U.S. manufacturing jobs in the Midwest, convert nearly 3000 temporary UAW-Ford workers to permanent full-time status and provide all hourly employees healthcare benefits on the first day of employment.

Ford Motor no longer bothers to hold press conferences covering monthly sales. Yesterday Jim Farley, President and Chief Executive Officer when asked at the Alliance Bernstein Strategic Decisions Conference about Tesla and five other EV companies with a market cap above $20 billion – meaning the market is saying there are  at least six credible new entrants – said, “We’re going to see very large consolidation and big changes. I would say new EV companies probably will get simpler and Chinese will become more important…

“The old OEMs absolutely will get consolidated. They’ll be some big winners. Some people that transition, some won’t. Many of the small players cannot afford to make this transition. Many of them are not investing in embedded software and electric architectures, which is the heart of this transition. It’s not motors and gearbox, it’s gateway modules and software that controls the vehicle. The old suppliers will consolidate. And the new suppliers will emerge. A number of new suppliers that I don’t think are fully valued today. Like Mobileye, many, many, many new ones. And then the dealers, which is one of the largest valuations. Many of them are private. So, we don’t see the kind of capital markets value them, but their business will change a lot. And they’ll be a lot of winners and losers and, I believe consolidation. So, if you look at that all, I feel like there’s going to be more consolidation ahead of us, but it will be in pockets,” Farley said.

General Motors yesterday said it will drastically cut prices on its electric Chevrolet Bolt after the Detroit automaker had halted sales for six months following a battery recall. GM is cutting prices on the Bolt by around $6,000 and by as much as 18% for the lowest-price version, which will start at $26,595, down from $32,495. The Bolt EUV will start at $28,195 down from $35,695. “This change reflects our ongoing desire to make sure Bolt EV/EUV are competitive in the marketplace,” GM said in a statement, adding “affordability has always been a priority for these vehicles.”

Ford Motor is of course in the midst of a massive and complicated reorganization that requires optimizing old and new revenue streams where a strategic mistake could be life threatening:

The UAW actions announced today, coming more than a year ahead of 2023 contract negotiations, are part of the company’s Ford+ growth strategy above and include plans for an all-new global Mustang coupe and Ranger pickup for North America, as well as an all-new electric commercial vehicle for Ford Pro customers. Supported by $3.7 billion of investments in manufacturing facilities across Ohio, Michigan and Missouri, the new UAW-Ford manufacturing jobs are expected to result in the creation of an estimated 74,000 additional indirect non-Ford jobs nationally, based on a 2020 study by BCG on the economic impact of F-Series production.

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