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Ford closing 10 plants?!

Old 12/7/05, 06:59 AM
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It looks like Ford's restructuring plan is gonna be a bit more intense than previously assumed.
http://www.detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/artic.../512070322/1148

They're now saying at LEAST 10 plants will be closed, as well as 30,000 workers, including salaried, white collar workers and some execs as well as the hourly workers. That's pretty darn rough, when we heard of GM's plan, I was like, yeah, ford'll be mentioning similar plans soon, just maybe not as rough as 8 plants and 30,000 workers... guess i spoke too soon.

I guess they wanna make sure they get it right in one shot. I guess they'd rather be scrambling to meet demand rather than sitting around lazily with capacity way above demand. So i guess long run, this is probably a really good step towards turning the company around. On the short term though, i wonder how news like this affects sales. Do people here this and think, whoa, ford's dying, maybe i shouldn't buy their car, cause they'll go bankrupt and the warranty won't be good anymore. Whether or not that's actually true, i wonder if people think that.
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Old 12/7/05, 03:18 PM
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I hope it all works out in the end...
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Old 12/7/05, 03:54 PM
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Originally posted by mustang_sallad@December 7, 2005, 10:02 AM
It looks like Ford's restructuring plan is gonna be a bit more intense than previously assumed.
http://www.detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/artic.../512070322/1148

They're now saying at LEAST 10 plants will be closed, as well as 30,000 workers, including salaried, white collar workers and some execs as well as the hourly workers. That's pretty darn rough, when we heard of GM's plan, I was like, yeah, ford'll be mentioning similar plans soon, just maybe not as rough as 8 plants and 30,000 workers... guess i spoke too soon.

I guess they wanna make sure they get it right in one shot. I guess they'd rather be scrambling to meet demand rather than sitting around lazily with capacity way above demand. So i guess long run, this is probably a really good step towards turning the company around. On the short term though, i wonder how news like this affects sales. Do people here this and think, whoa, ford's dying, maybe i shouldn't buy their car, cause they'll go bankrupt and the warranty won't be good anymore. Whether or not that's actually true, i wonder if people think that.
Jeff, you bring up a very valid point and you pose a very good point of view. Undoubtedly there will be people that will think that way and the only way to change that is to educate them on what is really going on.

Not to insult the common public, but the majority of the masses don't have the capacity to rationally think out the whole long term process. What is being done needs to be done. With this plan in motion it may allow the future to be a very positive one, instead of doing what you said by sitting back and ignoring it. Bill Ford Jr. is a brilliant man in my opinion and is doing the right thing.

Kudos to you on your post, Jeff! You're a very bright gentleman.
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Old 12/7/05, 04:44 PM
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Short-term thinking is not only limited to "the common public" - corporate America can be included as well. You can look at companies like GM and Ford (among others) being in their current position as a result of the same point of view.
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Old 12/7/05, 05:15 PM
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Ford used to be company that everybody else followed their moves. Now its other way around. Ford introduced Mustang - everybody else followed. Ford introduced Taurus - everybody else follow. Now, Honda introduced Ridgeline, their first truck ever and Ford is following them with that new concept truck. What the heck are they doing? Ford is leader in truck world and now they're following Honda?

Take chances. Build cars like 427 and 49 Concepts, they will be success. Chrysler took chances with Magnum, 300 and Charger and yeah, they did succeded. Stop following and take leadership.
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Old 12/7/05, 05:23 PM
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I would say the Ridgeline was an after thought of the original Sport Trac.

And it's hard to take chances after shooting yourself in the foot for some many years. The last time Ford took chances . . see Mr. Nasser's vision of turing Ford into a corporate conglomerate, i.e. GE. You need money to take chanes and Ford doens't have much "play" money at present time.
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Old 12/7/05, 05:36 PM
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Take chances. Build cars like 427 and 49 Concepts, they will be success. Chrysler took chances with Magnum, 300 and Charger and yeah, they did succeded.
As neat as those cars are the difficulty is that they are kind of niche cars. While you and I may be very well interested in buying them, the majority of family orientated customers may be looking for more family orientated cars. Especially with the way people freaked over the gas prices.

Ford still leads more than one would think. They've focused more on safety and environmental innovation rather than sheer power though within the past 5 years or so. Volvo was one of the best mergers Ford has ever made.

I will be the first to admit that I would have loved to see a sedan with 427 cu. in. V10, but it just wouldn't be feasible to the masses.

Don't forget that at the moment SVT has taken a short hiatus to design bigger and badder cars for the "niche" market and will most likely be back in full force within the next couple years. The Adrenalin and Shelby are two very strong indicators of that.
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Old 12/7/05, 05:46 PM
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It doesn't have to have 427 cid V10 under the hood, get something like new 3.5L V6 and pair of 4.6L V8 (but with more hp than Crown Victoria have). Base price $24,000 for V6, $30,000+ for V8s ... it could be success.

I saw Ford 49 in person once, darn, that was one hot car. I think it would be a lot more successful than 2002+ Thunderbird.
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Old 12/7/05, 06:09 PM
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Ya, i think ford actually deserves the credit for creating the compact 4 door pick up SUT segment. The sport track was a first of its kind and many have followed in their lead, the ridgeline just being one example. There's some aspect of that global truck concept that resembles the ridgeline in some way... its hard to put a finger on it, maybe the front fascia or something, but honestly, the ridgeline is one of the ugliest cars on the market right now in my opinion. That ford truck is conservative yet quite stylish. Anyways... this discussion belongs in the thread about the truck, i suppose.

I agree with you Andy that cars like the 300 and charger are really niche vehicles, that's a good way of putting it. They stand out and make a statement, but a lot of people don't want to make a statement with their car.... my parents for one are like that. They don't want some in your face giant grill or cross hairs. What if you have a serious business engagement or a funeral or something... wouldn't you rather show up in a boring but handsome Ford 500?

Nevertheless, sales numbers are showing the 300 selling significantly more than the 500. The bold styling catches attention that's for sure... i just think it doesn't have much lasting power. I think you need a happy medium between bold style and conservative good looks, and i think that's where the fusion sits. Hopefully we'll see that come true and really be a sales hit. And then lets see ford apply that quality of styling to a small entry level car. Get people into the Ford family at a young age!


oh and thanks andy, you're a smart guy yourself.... Heck, everybody's smart here! Props to all the "Other Fords" posters who care about the mustangs brothas and sistas!
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Old 12/7/05, 06:25 PM
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Originally posted by mustang_sallad@December 7, 2005, 7:12 PM
Ya, i think ford actually deserves the credit for creating the compact 4 door pick up SUT segment. The sport track was a first of its kind and many have followed in their lead, the ridgeline just being one example. There's some aspect of that global truck concept that resembles the ridgeline in some way... its hard to put a finger on it, maybe the front fascia or something, but honestly, the ridgeline is one of the ugliest cars on the market right now in my opinion. That ford truck is conservative yet quite stylish. Anyways... this discussion belongs in the thread about the truck, i suppose.

Wasn't Cadillac Escalade EXT first one?

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Old 12/7/05, 06:30 PM
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The Sport Trac came out in '00 as an '01. I think the EXT came out in '01 as an '02.
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Old 12/7/05, 06:37 PM
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Originally posted by Evil_Capri@December 7, 2005, 9:33 PM
The Sport Trac came out in '00 as an '01. I think the EXT came out in '01 as an '02.
I just checked Edmunds and you are correct sir.

DA BEARS!!!
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Old 12/7/05, 07:24 PM
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People forget that Chrysler went through a massive restructing as well in 2001 where plants were closed and people lost jobs.

The biggest killer for Ford right now is downtime and lousy products (some of them). Example, the windstar plant runs on only one shift. Shift one works for two weeks, then shift two comes in for two weeks. That kind of productivity is a killer for the company.

A car plant needs to run on two 8 hour production shifts minimum to be considered profitable. With explorer sales tanking, one of the two plants building it needs to be closed. Same with the panther cars. Wixom and St Thomas should not both be running to build those platforms.

Ford and GM won't get better until they get much leaner. This means trimming all the useless management and the plant overcapacity.
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