• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • Ford Shines as Government Motors Stumbles

    Ford Motor Co

    For decades, General Motors, Chrysler and Ford have been notoriously lumped together at Detroit’s Big Three but these days Ford is distancing itself from the pack. But the reality is the separation began a few years ago when former Boeing executive Alan Mulally took control of Ford. “Alan Mulally came in 2006 and said, ‘This idea of producing vehicles that people don’t want to buy and forcing them into the market is insanity…By doing that he got a head start on everybody else,” AutoNation Inc Chief Executive Mike Jackson said in a recent interview with Reuters.

    Despite reporting record losses of $14.6 billion in 2008, Ford refused to take auto bailout cash and avoided bankruptcy and 2009 indicated that automaker is successfully turning the corner. Ford’s stock “gained 55 percent since November and more than quadrupled over the past year.” The company began January “by posting its first annual gain in U.S. market share since 1995 and the best sales growth in December among its peers.” What turned it around?

    “Under Mulally, Ford has slashed its North American workforce in half, closed factories and converted plants from making sport-utility vehicles to building smaller autos like the Focus. He sold Jaguar, Land Rover and Aston Martin and is near a sale of Volvo to China’s Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co.

    “I would like to be remembered for contributing to refocusing Ford on Ford,” Mulally said, adding he has no plans to retire. Mulally said he considers his “defining moment” at Ford his appearance before congressional committees in late 2008, where lawmakers derided him and his fellow U.S. auto chiefs for flying in private jets to Washington to beg for a bailout.

    “This is a very personal issue for me because I was the one there, doing it,” Mulally said. Americans “want companies to be successful. We don’t want to nationalize companies.”

    And while Chrysler and GM are working to reinstate unprofitable dealerships, Ford is seeking to consolidate. “The dealers are excited, because they all want the same thing. They want to be profitable while growing sales,” said Mulally.

    Chrysler says it sees light at the end of the tunnel, but Chrysler won’t reach the end of the tunnel until summer. The automaker said the company’s sales won’t improve until June. While both Chrysler and GM reported sales declines in December, Ford’s sales rose 33.5%.

    If the 2010 Detroit auto show is any indicator for future sales, the trend of Ford rising with the other two faltering will likely continue. Ford stole the show not only with its impressive 54,000 square-foot display but also with cars people actually want to buy.

    We can’t lump Detroit’s Big Three together anymore because right now Ford is in a class of its own while government motors shows no signs of returning to the private sector where it belongs.

    Posted in Economics [slideshow_deploy]

    21 Responses to Ford Shines as Government Motors Stumbles

    1. Daniel Harsh, Fresno says:

      It couldn't happen to a better company. Way to go FORD.

    2. Stephen Monteith, Vi says:

      I don't mind saying that the irony of Ford being the only major U.S. auto company to not take bailout money from the government And also be the only one to avoid bankruptcy was never lost on me. I hope it isn't lost on the American people.

      Not affiliated with any party. http://youngconservative27.blogspot.com/

    3. B.A. in Ohio says:

      A big Hooray for FORD CEO! Ford will have success because they have the right premises of doing business. I'll never buy a GM or Chrysler product since they've did a awful job of managing and took my tax dollars! This is unfair to companies that do run their company with good ethics and values the service/product it produces. Rewarding/bailing out a business for not managing the company is a slap in the face to every business which handles it correctly. Where's the free market in that thinking?

    4. Michael Garrison, At says:

      America is not buying Obamunism!

    5. Michael Garrison / says:

      America is not buying Obamunism!

    6. Leo B. Vadalà says:

      Last summer I was thrilled to see that Ford was holding its own despite not taking bailout money. It seems that history repeats itself, because back when Roosevelt was running rouughshod over the private sector with the National Industrial Recovery Act, Henry Ford was the only one who refused to play ball.


    7. Mike, in Ohio says:

      This article is about a political position. It isn't about cars.People may not like or agree with the GM bankruptcy process, but GM has an excellent lineup of vehicles that are not inferior in any way to Ford.

    8. Mississippi says:

      Good for Ford. I haven’t had a Ford in some time, but it may be my next car purchase. Years ago I knew a man who was head over heels in debt. He refused to take bankruptcy and I admired him for his resolve and integrity. It took him several years, but he paid his debts. That’s what we need in America today: people, like Ford, who will take responsibility and not depend on the government to bail them out. Actually most of these bailouts have been pushed by an administration bent on power and control.

    9. Shane Childers Chica says:

      This doesn't really surprise me. I have owned mostly Fords I have cars and trucks ranging from a 2008 fusion to my old 93 F250 diesel with 340,000 miles and still running, a 99 f250 gas truck with 225000 miles on it and an explore with 130,000 these are just what I have now. The 93 took a trans. At 200000 nothing else major on any of them. This is just a real lipfe account of the product Ford has been putting out for years. With that developing new technology and a model business platform.

    10. Adam Dietrich Conk says:

      Way to go Ford! As a Michigan native, involved in Agriculture (Michigan's second largest industry after the Auto industry)…I am not sure I want to see that change, and I think Ford is the model to follow to see that it doesn't. Industry is necessary to this state, and perhaps vital…despite what our Governor may think…Green jobs won't pull us out, nor will government action… Capitalism will and Ford proves that.

    11. ERHandyman, Central says:

      Way to go Ford, stay out of the governments control. I have owned many Words over the years and currently have two (2) and will continue to buy them if they can keep the quality up, the pricing reasonable and the feds out!

      Thank you Ford, keep on your present course and we will keep buying you products.

    12. Ron Welge Mo. says:

      GM has many fine vechicles, of which i have had many. But to me the way Ford has handled it's company with integerity and with the capilalist spirit refusing our money from the Govt., pulling themselves up with thier boot straps, has placed them in the proper position for succes. They have chosen capitalism over socialism! I will not own another GM vechicle! THANK YOU FORD

    13. Teddy, Texas says:

      I've always been a GM man, not now. I will never buy a GM or Chyrsler product while they are majority owned by unions because Obama paid them off for political support. Shareholders were thrown to the side and all the companies assets were "gifted" to the corrupt unions that strangled the corporations in the first place. If you're an American and believe in what made this country strong, let GM and Chrysler fail the way they should have and take their corrupt majority owners with them! Give the UAW what it has coming to it!



    14. Bobbie Jay says:

      FORD, you are the example of AMERICA. SELF RELIANT!

      Please don't ever reach out for the hand of government. FORD TOUGH!

    15. Zach says:

      I've owned a chevy since 2004, but my next truck will definitely be a Ford. Way to go Ford!

    16. Alesia Bates Parkway says:

      I am so proud of Ford and I am so thankful to work for Parkway Ford! I just love that Toyota is in some problems. It is about time the Imports get what us American products had on bad publicity. I have been in sales for twenty seven years and I am proud to work for a company who is up on everything. Best product in the world. I love you Ford!l

    17. samantha says:

      Unfortunately, Ford has been in bed with the progressives! This is why they did not need a bailout. Do your homework and check out the connections with the Ford Foundation. I loved my Ford until I learned this and will never buy a Ford again.

    18. Pat, Cincinnati says:

      Alan Mulally made a very good business decision obtaining very favorable credit prior to the financial meltdown. Ford was able to continue business without TARP government meddling. Thank you President Obama, but no (Tax; Government Deficit Loans). Ford continues to run its' own Auto Business better than the Government. No doubt, Alan Mulally is a good Auto businessman in addition to his financial success. Ford is now the number one Car company.

    19. Pat, Cincinnati says:

      Attention American Heritage Blog. All comments seem to bestuck on January 15, 2010 at 12:28pm.

    20. Pingback: Jason's Blog » Ford Shines as Government Motors Stumbles

    21. phil,pa says:

      They are profiting because they stole my ideas for the redesign of fords trucks and the microsoft SYNC system….ALL MY IDEAS WERE STOLEN!!!!!

    Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone's intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.

    Big Government Is NOT the Answer

    Your tax dollars are being spent on programs that we really don't need.

    I Agree I Disagree ×

    Get Heritage In Your Inbox — FREE!

    Heritage Foundation e-mails keep you updated on the ongoing policy battles in Washington and around the country.