Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) Focus On China Growth Plan

Remigio Civitarese
Dicembre 7, 2017

Ford Motor expected to sign as early as Thursday a deal with Alibaba Group Holding, which may allow the United States carmaker to test selling cars to consumers in China through Alibaba's online retail arm Tmall, as well as via a new "auto vending machine" store concept, according to a Ford source familiar with the matter. Collaborating with leading technology players builds on our vision for smart vehicles in a smart world to reimagine and revolutionize consumers' mobility experiences, " said Jim Hackett, Ford's President and CEO.

By the end of 2019, 100 percent of new Ford and Lincoln-badged vehicles in China will be connected through either embedded modems or plug-in devices.

And while Ford benefits from Alibaba's retail and digital experience, Alibaba can pull from Ford's experience running a global company as the Chinese company tries to expand.

The source said the proposal could mean that cars bought online are delivered to buyers by franchised Ford retail stores and would be maintained and repaired by them.

The Tmall sales strategy includes an "Automotive Vending Machine", a multistory parking garage that sells directly to consumers.

Hackett added that Ford's goal is to become the most trusted mobility firm of the world, designing smart cars for a smart world.

Alibaba says that consumers can use their phones to browse the cars in the garage, before choosing to either test drive it or buy immediately.

"From luxury Lincolns, to Ford cars and SUVs, to an all-new electric vehicle brand, we will meet the growing desire and need in China for great new energy vehicles", said Jason Luo, chairman and CEO, Ford China. The chosen vehicle would be delivered to the ground floor.

That won't be the case, some experts say. "But if this format gained steam, it would definitely impact dealers", according to Yale Zhang, head of Shanghai-based consultancy Automotive Foresight. However, Alibaba gets both the financing and the sales.

Online auto sales volumes are now small in China because buyers want to be able to see, touch and drive cars before buying, Zhang pointed out. The ability to test drive a vehicle ordered online could change that.

Altre relazioniGrafFiotech

Discuti questo articolo

Segui i nostri GIORNALE