Ford taking further steps towards globalization
April 2, 2008
Somewhere in a Ford press release, wrapped in several layers of marketing-speak, is an announcement about the Blue Oval is taking several more steps towards globalization, this time by reorganizing its product development and purchasing operations. Under the new structure, vehicle development is split up by segment rather by geographic location, which Ford hopes will reduce overlap and cut costs.
Additionally, the automaker is splitting up engineering and purchasing duties as well. Its North American arm will be responsible for doing engineering work on electrical and body components for vehicles around the world, as well as V-6 and V-8 engines, automatic transmissions, and hybrids. Its European operations will work on developing chassis bits, four cylinder gas and diesel engines, and manual transmissions. There will still remain some region-specific operations, however, such as F-series trucks in the U.S. and compact trucks in Asia.
The end result should be beneficial to both Ford and the consumer. Ford saves money by developing core components for the entire world and then adapting those for the needs of a region while reducing the time needed to get those vehicles to market and the consumer gets the best products the company has to offer, and faster. Its about time.