Here’s How Ford Is Struggling, And Why It Needs To Nail Its 2020 Launches

Ford Motor Company has seen days like this before… back during the economic downturn of 2008. [Photo: Ford Motor Company]

On Thursday, February 27, Ford Motor Company stock fell to 7.08 USD −0.14

Ford Motor Company is having a tough year. With rocky sales numbers, issues with the Ford Explorer launch, controversy surrounding its PowerShift automated manual transmission and more, the Blue Oval has their work cut out for them in 2020.

Currently, the company is in a state where new Chief Operating Officer Jim Farley said Wednesday, “We have to fix a number of things.” Those who have looked back at the 2010s, a time when Ford should have capitalized on its rivals’ weaker positions coming out of the last recession, as a time when instead it squandered key opportunities. Some speculate that a new shakeup in leadership is in order. Others believe canceling so many cars and focusing on trucks and SUVs may have been a wrong decision. Many of Ford’s attempts to pull off many ambitious projects over the past few years have met with underwhelming results, as the company failed to meet customer expectations, according to some analysts.

Ford indicated that they intend to stay the course, maintain their leadership and keep their truck, SUV and crossover strategies they started a few years back. To date, it spent $3.7 billion of a projected $11 billion in restructuring. This year, Ford may add another $1 billion to the amount its racked up so far.

Speaking at a recent Wolfe Research conference in New York, Farley stated: “Everyone at Ford knows the situation we’re in. I can see it on the faces of my colleagues and it takes me back to about 10 years ago. I’ve seen the look before.”

What about the turnaround? 

The $11 billion restructuring plan is meant to improve Ford’s manufacturing infrastructure, quality, brand loyalty and technology. However, there’s something even more important for Ford’s image: having successful debuts. Within the next year, three major vehicles will debut for the Ford Motor Company. The upcoming Ford Bronco, next generation Ford F-150 and all-electric Ford Mustang Mach-E need to be successful debuts. 

Each vehicle represents Ford at its most successful (the F-150) most daring, (the Mustang Mach-E) or most buzz-worthy (the upcoming Bronco). There are other vehicles coming as well, but these three are the big ones that may or may not help Ford with its future. 

CarScoops pointed to another of Farley’s comments. He said that the company is capable of hitting a stride when its back is against the wall: “When I see Ford at its best was in ’08…When there was a threat, the team comes together, decisions get made quickly at the right level. It’s very natural.”

We’ll see how Ford weathers this storm. We’re particularly looking forward to the upcoming Bronco, which you can find out more about below.