Ford has just announced that it is converting fully to crossovers in North America, dropping traditional sedans after the current generation. The shocking news came as part of the company's first quarter financial results announcement earlier today, along with the news of a new model coming.
Sales of sedans are dropping off a cliff in the last few years, as more small crossover options become available. Cheap gas, improving fuel economy, and changing tastes have moved buyers from cars to crossovers and trucks. Sales of the Focus, Fiesta, Fusion, and Taurus have all suffered as a result.
Fiesta sales in Canada last year were less than one-tenth what they were in 2011, not hitting the 2,000 car mark in 2017. Focus sales have cut in half since 2015, and Fusion and Taurus haven't fared much better.
So the Blue Oval is moving to crossovers. The only vehicle we'll get with one of those nameplates is the new Focus Active, which is sort of a Subaru Crosstrek version of the Focus platform. It's a taller, more SUV-looking Focus that's a five-door hatch. That model will arrive in North America next year, said the company.
Ford Mustang fans need not worry. Not yet, at least. That car will continue on, with this applying only to sedans.
Ford is also planning to bring more hybrid systems to existing models, with the F-150, Mustang, Explorer, Escape, and new Bronco all slated to become electrified. The company's fully-electric rollout will start with a performance SUV in 2020. 15 more will follow by 2022.
The move to drop sedans is part of a cost-cutting move that nearly doubles the target the company announced just a few months ago. The automaker now has a goal of cutting US $25.5 billion from company expenses in five years, up from $14 billion from last October. Ford expects that to mean an eight percent profit margin by 2020.
Ford didn't say when the vehicles will go away, just that they will not be replaced when they do. Ford also didn't mention if the Lincoln sedans that share Ford platforms will be affected by the changes.