Ford wants to sell cars, especially electric vehicles, online at fixed prices
The company says it will still be possible to buy cars from dealerships, who can set their own price
The details of the arrangement are still being worked out, hence the confusion of some elements
Recent comments by Jim Farley, CEO of Ford Motor Company, in which he said the automaker would opt for a “100% online” buying process have caused confusion.
Ford has now cleared up some of that confusion, but the details of the program are still pretty hazy and some even seem to directly contradict each other.
According to the company, the CEO’s comments mean that the buying process will be done online rather than at a dealership, not that the company will get rid of its dealerships. Indeed, Ford has confirmed that it will not be abandoning its established dealerships and it has even stated that customers will still be able to walk into their local Ford dealership to order a new vehicle. The difference is that the employee would help them order a vehicle on the company’s website, a practice similar to Tesla and Polestar.
This will be done to remove the price negotiation that usually takes place between seller and buyer as well as to prevent dealers from placing a large markup on the price of popular vehicles, as is the case with some of the most popular models. recent models from Ford, such as the Maverick, Bronco and F-150 Lightning.
Where there is further confusion is when Ford says its vehicles will be offered at one price, but dealers will still be able to set their own selling price. It doesn’t seem too different from the current model where the manufacturer suggests a price (the MSRP) and then the dealer chooses to add or subtract a certain amount.
According to the automaker, dealerships will all have to invest some of their own money to fund the transition to this new business model, but the amount that comes out of each establishment’s pockets will depend on their business size and location.
The details of this new business model are being worked out by the automaker, which would take a clean sheet approach and attempt to rebuild an entirely new way of selling vehicles, working with some of its current dealerships.