June 16, 2024
Electric & Hybrid Cars

Ford CEO Farley emphasizes that hybrid vehicles serve a purpose beyond simply bridging the gap to electric vehicles

DETROIT — Ford CEO Jim Farley is advocating for a shift in perception regarding hybrid vehicles, urging the industry to view them as more than just a temporary solution before transitioning to fully electric vehicles.

“We should no longer consider hybrids as transitional technology,” Farley remarked at a Bernstein analyst conference on Thursday.

While plug-in hybrids, equipped with a small battery for shorter distances, may become obsolete in the near future, Farley emphasized the significance of extended-range hybrids for the industry’s future. He may have been alluding to vehicles like the Ram 1500 Ramcharger, featuring a substantial battery pack along with a gas engine generator for additional electricity when needed.

Hybrid vehicles have seen a surge in demand over the past year, prompting automakers to reassess their shift towards electric vehicles.

Ford aims to quadruple hybrid sales in the coming years, diverting some of its investments in electric vehicles and delaying production of EVs in Canada and the U.S.

During the conference, Farley also expressed his belief that EVs should not rely on subsidies, urging automakers to focus on producing profitable battery-powered models efficiently.

“We must strive to achieve that level of efficiency as soon as possible,” Farley added.

In a strategic move, Ford separated its electric and software division from its gas-engine operations in 2022 to enhance efficiency in both areas.

Looking ahead, Ford anticipates a loss of $5 billion to $5.5 billion in its EV business this year following a $4.7 billion loss in 2023.

Farley and other industry executives predict that software and subscription services will play a crucial role in driving profits in the future.

Farley views autonomous driving technology as a major growth opportunity for Ford, noting that Chinese competitors have excelled in developing software and services that resonate with customers.

“The digital consumer experience in China surpasses that in the West,” Farley observed. “Competitive success hinges on cost efficiency and quality, benchmarks set not in the U.S. but in China.”

Amid intense competition abroad, Farley anticipates challenges for car manufacturers, particularly all-electric brands without gas-engine offerings to bolster profits.

 

FAQ

Q: What is Ford CEO Jim Farley advocating for regarding hybrid vehicles?

A: Farley suggests that the industry should not view hybrids as a temporary solution before transitioning to fully electric vehicles.

Q: What are Farley’s views on the future of EVs?

A: Farley believes that EVs should be produced profitably without relying on subsidies.

Conclusion

In conclusion, Ford CEO Jim Farley’s insights shed light on the evolving landscape of hybrid and electric vehicles, emphasizing the need for a strategic approach towards sustainable and profitable solutions in the automotive industry.

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