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View Poll Results: Will Ford stick around in India?
Yes 255 53.01%
No 226 46.99%
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Old 1st May 2021, 22:31   #31
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Default Re: Ford India's future plans | Will it stick around in India?

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They do not have bad models, they have trust issues.
Trust issues aren't helped by the fact that no one from Ford India attempts to dispel notions of their impending exit/at least clarify their stand on this issue (if at all they're staying back). Even the latest communique is very ambiguous and does nothing to instill confidence in potential buyers. A confidence building measure would help them sell their present offerings at the least- know quite a few fence sitters who find their cars absolutely satisfactory for their needs but are postponing the purchase for to their uncertain future. The newly appointed team will do well to put out a statement of intent (even just provisional) that reassures present buyers.
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Old 1st May 2021, 22:36   #32
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Default Re: Ford India's future plans | Will it stick around in India?

I hope Ford stays in India, yet didn't vote as I fear Ford may do an Argentina in India.

I wish they don't exit India, instead update Figo+Aspire regularly with a raised coupe sort of variant for the sedan (first mover in segment).

Also keep on refreshing/ updating Ecosport to hang on to sub-4 meter SUV segment. Launch the Kuga/ Edge in Creta segment. Preferably a people mover from its international segment (which can also double up for commercial duties in few variants). Still I believe there will be space in Rs 25-35 lakhs segment for launch of Evos in India.

I understand I'm expecting more, but I see them making more mistakes & giving up segments/ markets easily than otherwise.
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Old 1st May 2021, 23:35   #33
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Default Re: Ford India's future plans | Will it stick around in India?

One thing that puzzles me is, Ford earned a lot of goodwill with the launch of EcoSport, reducing the cost of ownership et all. But they never had a plan for a larger SUV. The EcoSport owners who are impressed with the product and the service, what can they upgrade to ? In the last 6 years since EcoSport, they really should have developed a Creta rival, that would have made a lot of business sense.

If Kia and MG managed to find success in that segment, I am sure Ford with the right product and effort could have had a very successful model in that space too.
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Old 1st May 2021, 23:57   #34
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Default Re: Ford India's future plans | Will it stick around in India?

With this news and the very realistic possibility of Ford's exit from India, is it still a good move to opt for a new Ecosport Petrol automatic? It is one of my options.

What would happen in case Ford stops sales operations in India. I understand that law mandates support for a vehicle by a manufactures post it's sale. Yet, can we realistically expect decent service and spares availability? Will ownership become a pain?
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Old 2nd May 2021, 04:14   #35
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Default Re: Ford India's future plans | Will it stick around in India?

Chairman of Ford has publicly stated that Ford is going to invest $29 Billion for developing electric power trains in next 4 years. He has also spoken about vertical integration for the EV conversion that can mean addition investments for battery technology. This is a significant amount of capital investment even for a company such as Ford (though it pales in comparison with VWís commitment to spend $88 Billion for EV conversion over next few years). All the major global OEMs are in a race to get on to this EV train lest they are left behind.

Currently Ford is selling approx 100,000 units in India and its balance sheet is probably awash in Red. If you look at Fordís North American or European portfolio there is not a single vehicle that I see that can potentially do well in India. However Ford of China has a couple of vehicles including the Territory (about which there is enough speculation in Indian automotive media including on this forum that it might be launched here). One more vehicle that can act somewhat of a halo product and invite more footfalls into Ford dealerships is Ford Ranger.

Ford would need at least $1.5 to $2 Billion capital investment in tooling/jigs/fixtures costs to bring both of these vehicles to India and if they can launch the Territory between Rs. 17 to Rs. 22 lacs (depending on the variant) then they can sell 3 to 4,000 units a month. Ranger can possibly give them additional 15,000 to 20,000 units a year if priced sensibly between Rs 22 to 26 lacs. Even then it will give them a total sale of 170,000 units a year. How much money can they make off of these new platforms is anybodyís guess. What this additional volume will do is to give their dealers some economy of scale to run their operations profitably as their current portfolio has aged (barring the Endeavour). For Ford India however it is unlikely to do much by way of profitability at least in the short term.

In all fairness Ford has a much larger stake in this part of the world than letís say GM that has sold off its European operations to Magna International & PSA and is only present in China. Ford of Europe is still a major player in EU and that reflects in the kind of portfolio it maintain in Europe (and of course in China). The geographical proximity of its various assembly operations in Asia Pacific/China/Southern Europe does provide some strength to Ford.

Realistically speaking the EV conversion in the Indian market is so far away (both in terms of absolute numbers & % market share) that it is also unlikely to act as an attractive proposition (in short to medium term) to a hard number crunching transformational advisor Mr. Steven Armstrong. In fact barring MG none of the global OEMs are even talking about the EVs in any substantial manner for the Indian market.

I believe that Ford has no illusions that it will never be a mass market player in India. If Ford has the tenacity and foresight and they can sustain their operations in the Indian market by making it economically viable in the medium term; it will stay with a limited portfolio with a focus on products that range between Rs 15 lacs & Rs 35 lacs. It will be a shame to see the blue oval leave India.

Note: In the interest of being transparent I must declare that I have had the opportunity to own two fantastic Ford products in last 18 years; a Ford Ikon in 2003 & a 2013 Ford Edge (a mid size SUV with 3.5 ltr. V6 motor that puts out 280 BHP). I passed on the Edge to my daughter in 2017 and it is going strong with 190,000 kms on the clock. My experience with Ford has been absolutely first class & I wish that they stay in India.
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Old 2nd May 2021, 09:32   #36
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Default Re: Ford India's future plans | Will it stick around in India?

Apart of poor financial condition of Ford india operations, we should also see Fords desparateness to be here in India. From joint venrures to multiple reanalysis, ford is leaving no stone unturned to save its Indian operation. Ford India losses are already written on the wall, so what the analysis is for??
IMO, its the scope of car penetration that is preventing Ford from leaving India. Markets all over the world are automobile saturated and the growth can only come from India in short term (read 10-20 years). Its the uncetainity caused by electric vehicles that all automobile majors are shirking to invest in conventional ICE vehicles.
Instead of closing Indian operations completely ford should stay in India but with limited presence. Its portfolio can start from endeavour onwards and can include Bronco, Mustang, Ranger. When the things get clear, ford can scale up operations any time. But if you leave any market in between, that will tarnish your brand image for next 50 years.

Last edited by Dr.Abhi : 2nd May 2021 at 09:33.
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Old 2nd May 2021, 10:09   #37
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Default Re: Ford India's future plans | Will it stick around in India?

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What would happen in case Ford stops sales operations in India. I understand that law mandates support for a vehicle by a manufactures post it's sale. Yet, can we realistically expect decent service and spares availability? Will ownership become a pain?
If we're drawing parallels with the GM/Chevrolet episode, the erstwhile customers of Chevrolet seen happy enough. https://www.team-bhp.com/forum/techn...t-india-3.html (Chevrolet owners, how is the spare parts availability & service since GM left India?)

Last edited by ajmat : 2nd May 2021 at 10:38.
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Old 2nd May 2021, 12:31   #38
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Default Re: Ford India's future plans | Will it stick around in India?

Actually this is not just about Ford but few others as well. India is the only large market in the world where a single OEM has almost half of the market, and the next two have half of what is remaining. So its obvious everybody else will be in single digits.

Look at the financial numbers I could get access to (these are consolidated numbers domestic + exports, don't have the latest), Ford was doing bad, but not REALLY that bad than the other OEMs in 'similar' situation. I am sure the latest numbers would be worse.

With these kind of numbers, India operation for these global OEMs is negligible and forgettable, unless it's a strategic priority.

So the intriguing questions is - what's keeping them in India and still fighting for that single digit Market Share? And what will make them leave?

Off-course being a new Ford customer, if Ford leaves I won't like it. The resale will go for a toss, while GM has managed the service, how will Ford manage, time only will tell. But the customers like me will loose for sure!
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Old 2nd May 2021, 13:12   #39
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Default Re: Ford India's future plans | Will it stick around in India?

Way back around 2016, Ford had exited Indonesia, Australia, Thailand and had reduced its exposure in Russia. The South Korean and Japanese onslaughts by competitors in the first three markets were obvious. We have been receiving signals from Ford eversince 2016, that it may or may not stay in India. Their very recent, second time JV with M&M came out a cropper.

Their marketing efforts lack steam. Safety is the main issue where they have an edge over the competition, but this has rarely been highlighted in their publicity material, on the media. If their "after sales service and spares issues" are resolved and the safety factor is highlighted, there is no reason as to why Ford will trail in the sales charts in our very competitive market.

I am reminded on a 1982 punk rock, chartbuster hit from the UK (Ford India's home country) that reached # 1 ten years after its first release by the pop group The Clash. The lyrics is quite meaningful for Ford. Some relevant lines from the pop song's lyrics :-

Quote:

Darling, you got to let me know ("Darling" means India and its customers)
Should I stay or should I go?
If you say that you are mine ("You" means India and its customers)
I'll be here 'till the end of time
So you got to let me know
Should I stay or should I go?
Should I stay or should I go now?
Should I stay or should I go now?
If I go, there will be trouble
And if I stay it will be double
So come on and let me know
This indecision's bugging me
If you don't want me, set me free
Exactly whom I'm supposed to be
Don't you know which clothes even fit me?
So ya gotta let me know ("Ya" also means India and its customers)
Should I stay or should I go?

Last edited by anjan_c2007 : 2nd May 2021 at 13:15.
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Old 2nd May 2021, 13:40   #40
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Default Re: Ford India's future plans | Will it stick around in India?

I agree with you. When people look at the Indian car market, it seems sizeable with approx 3 million units!

The reality its only a 1.5 million/year market with a dozen odd car manufacturers fighting for miniscule market share.

The Indian auto industry's biggest curse is a weed called suzuki India. It's eaten up half the garden but does not bear any fruit and its only purpose is ensuring the survival of Hamamatsu hq in Japan.

I have no issues with dominant car manufacturers. Like how Hyundai Kia dominates Korea or Peugeot Renault dominates France. Yet this domination leads to the creation of a global company with massive exports and global presence.

On the other hand Suzuki India gives nothing in return. Maruti had a 2 decade head start with the Indian governments backing and what do they have to show for it?! Indias largest maker of mediocre tin boxes.

Are they India biggest car exporter, no, even Ford exports more cars. They keep doing press releases for exporting a few hundred Jimnys! They have no real progressive R&D in India. No ev investment... nada.

This weed keeps destroying the market, detrimental to the Indian manufacturing sector.

Ford was not the first or last manufacturer to give up on the Indian car market.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ulhas.ahirrao View Post
Actually this is not just about Ford but few others as well. India is the only large market in the world where a single OEM has almost half of the market, and the next two have half of what is remaining. So its obvious everybody else will be in single digits.

Look at the financial numbers I could get access to (these are consolidated numbers domestic + exports, don't have the latest), Ford was doing bad, but not REALLY that bad than the other OEMs in 'similar' situation. I am sure the latest numbers would be worse.

With these kind of numbers, India operation for these global OEMs is negligible and forgettable, unless it's a strategic priority.

So the intriguing questions is - what's keeping them in India and still fighting for that single digit Market Share? And what will make them leave?

Off-course being a new Ford customer, if Ford leaves I won't like it. The resale will go for a toss, while GM has managed the service, how will Ford manage, time only will tell. But the customers like me will loose for sure!
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Old 2nd May 2021, 14:52   #41
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Default Re: Ford India's future plans | Will it stick around in India?

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Originally Posted by shortbread View Post
The Indian auto industry's biggest curse is a weed called suzuki India
Could not agree more! As clearly indicated by market share numbers month over month, year over year, MSIL provides Indian car buyers with what majority of them want - superb fuel efficiency and low cost of ownership, period! No one bats an eyelid if this comes at the cost of riding in tin cans which can crumple with a mere human punch! As if this was not enough, enter the Korean cousins with all their razzmatazz - brake-failure issues and what not, notwithstanding - and take away half of what's left

Needless to say, Ford India - and many other global manufacturers, for that matter - would have realized this long back and would not be striving to significantly increase market share beyond what it has been for quite a few years now. If they have stayed on for as many years, why quit now? But if they do, all I'd say is that Indian automobile market got what it deserved

Last edited by cool_dube : 2nd May 2021 at 14:54.
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Old 2nd May 2021, 15:03   #42
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Default Re: Ford India's future plans | Will it stick around in India?

There is no doubt that Ford is in the end game now along with some other brands too. They need to bring in their core strengths to the game and use their greatest weapon. Good, strong cars with fun to drive factor. There is this talk about foreign players not able to bring down their quality levels to accommodate Maruti/Hyundai levels. Then why not play in the segment where those two don't have any offerings ! A few years ago VW/Skoda looked at a very dark future, yet today they have some promising SUVs lined up for release. This is where Ford should strike in my opinion. Forget everything below the EcoSport, and target everything from that point all the way up to the endeavor.
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Old 2nd May 2021, 22:25   #43
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Default Re: Ford India's future plans | Will it stick around in India?

All this news and view posted here makes me worry and think if I should buy the time and hold on my Ecosport purchase.
If Ford exits, would their service centers live up to their reputation of low maintenance costs? And in their absence, would their cars have any resale value over the period of time?
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Old 3rd May 2021, 09:47   #44
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Default Re: Ford India's future plans | Will it stick around in India?

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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
If Ford India does stick around, it will only be with minimal new investments and selling cars picked from its global portfolio.
Does it really make sense to bring in 2500 units without homologation?

I assume that for each new model that they bring, there must be crores of rupees spent on training the sales and service teams, and stocking spares and body panels. Anyone who owned a vintage car/ bike will know the feeling of being able to build 2 more models when they look around their garage.
Also they may have to fly the mechanics around like Ferrari/ Lamborgini do.

Homologating a new model is a tedious and expensive process. That's why manufacturers are scared to even add a decal in case they have to rehomologate.

That said I don't think Ford or any other European/ American brand will be willing to put the time and effort to do a small volume, high investment and low returns business. Mercedes and BMW may do it. Audi may give a face presentation along with Jag/ LR but all others will definitely leave. This is regardless of the market presence. Remember that GM was in the top just about 10 years ago with Astra/ Optra and Captiva.

We will continue to have home brew brands - Mahindra, Tata, and new ones will come up. And a Japanese/ Asian presence as they are usually willing to look at a looong term picture.

Last edited by wildsdi5530 : 3rd May 2021 at 09:50. Reason: To add GM exit.
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Old 3rd May 2021, 09:53   #45
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Default Re: Ford India's future plans | Will it stick around in India?

If Ford India wants to survive, as far as I can think of, they have 2 options:

1) Develop new products or bring products that can sell in India (highly unlikely)

2) Go into Hibernation mode and wait till the time is ripe:

What do you mean by hibernation? Focus almost completely on exports. I don't know if they have a good hold in African markets. But something like the EcoSport fits the bill perfectly for African market. Suzuki is having a field day selling their products there. So much so that even Toyota is selling their "Urban Cruiser" a.k.a Brezza in African markets beside Suzuki.

If FORD tries honestly, they can make India the manufacturing hub for 2 products - The Ecosport (if they plan on continuing it) or their very popular RANGER pick-up. They already have half the parts for the Ranger and vendors they need here, from the Endeavour supply chain. They only need to invest to scale up the production. If I remember right Endeavour's daily production number are only in Double digits.

They can sell some products, if people want to buy them, on the side and bring in and sell 2500 units of some desirable international products like VW to keep the Brand alive long enough to find the right time come back.

I'm sure they can easily find 2500 rich people in India to sell their New Mach-E electric SUV or future electric vehicles or a few examples of the proper Mustang to maintain/develop their image.
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