Now that GM has put forth an ambitious (and desperate) restructuring and cost-cutting plan, it’s Ford’s (F) turn to unveil their new direction. F will announce earnings this Thursday and due to a “rapid and permanent shift in consumer tastes brought on by high gas prices”, the car company is going small.
The New York Times reports that Ford is expected to announce that it will convert three of its North American assembly plants from making trucks to making (small) cars. The company will also end the death watch for its Mercury division and make it a centrepiece of their newly-minted small-car blitz.
While the confirmation of the new strategy is nice, was there any other option? We can’t imagine shareholders would have reacted kindly if Ford’s plan was ‘gas prices be damned, we’re going to keep pumping out trucks and SUVs no one wants anymore.’ And another pat on the back for Ford and the other American car makers for making the same mistake all over again.