Today is investor day at Ford. That's the day where they give a state of the company address to everybody who owns a piece of the automaker and provide them with an idea of what to expect going forward. Fiscally speaking, anyway. Some of the announcements concern new product and future product planning, and there were a few significant ones made today.
The biggest is the announcement that the full-size Expedition SUV will be following the path of the company's pickups and moving to an all aluminium body. The new SUV will debut next year and is expected to go on sale for the 2018 model year. The switch to aluminium saved between 160 and 200 kg on the F-150 and Super Duty trucks, and would likely have an even larger impact on the Expedition as there is more of it to lighten. Combined with the latest turbocharged EcoBoost engines, the new SUV should have noticeable fuel economy improvements over the outgoing one.
In addition to the Expedition, Ford stated they had plans to launch four all-new SUVs in an effort to take advantage of the current trends in that market. Details were not given on how they would fit into the lineup, or what countries they were intended for.
Ford also announced plans to shift all North American small car production to Mexico in the next two-three years. The Fiesta is already produced in Mexico, so the big mover would be the Focus. The move is an effort to cut costs on low profit margin small cars. In order to further reduce costs and complexities, and simplify production, CEO Mark Fields said that the company wants to reduce the 300 option and colour configurations of the current Focus to a number closer to 30.