Ford to invest $11 billion by 2022 in 40 hybrid and electric models
Chairman Bill Ford has announced that the multinational automaker is greatly scaling up investment in the next generation automobiles aiming to add 40 hybrid and all-electric models to its line-up by 2022.
Ford is making a big move to embrace the transition to low-emissions transportation as the company had previously announced an investment target of $4.5 billion by 2020.
“We’re taking our mainstream vehicles, our most iconic vehicles, and we’re electrifying them. If we want to be successful with electrification, we have to do it with vehicles that are already popular”, Bill Ford said.
“This $11 billion you’re seeing, that means we’re all in now. The only question is whether the customers will be there with us and we think they will”, he added.
From the total 40 models, 16 are planned to be fully electric and the rest plug-in hybrids.
Last October, Jim Hackett, Ford’s Chief Executive, informed the company’s shareholders that it planned to cut back $14 billion over the next 5 years and that the company’s investments would shift from sedans and internal combustion engines to increase the manufacturing of more trucks, and electric and hybrid cars.
To this end, the company has formed a special team to accelerate its mission to harvest the global development of electric vehicles.
Jim Farley, Ford’s President of global markets, said that “what we learned from this first cycle of electrification is people want really nice products”, urging the industry to “think big” as the competition between automakers increases.
Ford is getting prepared for tougher pollution standards in countries all around the world, as China, UK, France, and Germany have already planned, or are planning, to ban the sale of conventional combustion engine vehicles.
Raj Nair, Head of Ford’s North American operations has admitted that such moves are “rightful” adding: “We believe man-made CO2 is contributing to climate change and we’ve got our part to play”.
The company’s aggressive shift to electrification took place after Tesla surpassed Ford in market value in 2017. This is when Jim Hackett took over the CEO position, to lead the transition of Ford’s focus.
“You’d rather be ahead than fast in this world. What that means is that when you come out with a new product it better be ahead of anything that’s on the market”, he added.