Ford Motors, however, declined to comment on this. But the way Ola is focusing on electric vehicles, it is clear that Ford can sell its two factories.
Ford Motors may exit India soon
Ford Motor Company can follow the path of General Motors in India. According to a Times of India report, the American automobile manufacturer is looking to end its Indian manufacturing operations. The manufacturer will decide on its two factories in India by the end of this year. Ford India has two factories in India, one in Marayamalai Nagar and the other in Sanand. Ford is reportedly in talks with various manufacturers and other car companies for contract manufacturing or sales of its Indian factories. The latest round of talks is with Ola, a cab-aggregator but looking to enter the electric vehicle business.
While Ola officials declined to comment on the development, a Ford India spokesperson termed the news as speculative. According to a Ford India spokesperson, “We would not like to comment on speculations. We are continuing to assess our capital allocation in India and expect a response in the second half of this year.
Ford and Mahindra were expected to enter into a partnership. However, on 1 January 2021, both the producers amicably announced that the JV is closed and both the producers will go their separate ways. As Ford and Mahindra were at an advanced stage of negotiations, Ford slowed down with discussions of contract manufacturing with other manufacturers. Had the joint venture been successful, the manufacturing at Ford’s Marayamalai Nagar and Sanand plants would be around 40,000 units per year.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the associated lockdown, most of the manufacturers have suffered massive losses in the country. The market has shrunk, due to which factories are operating well below their total capacity.
Ford has recently launched the new EcoSport SE in the Indian market. However, the manufacturer is still missing out on some of the most important segments in India, especially the mid-sized SUV, which is ruled by vehicles like the Hyundai Creta and Kia Seltos. Ford’s best-selling vehicle, the EcoSport, has been present in the Indian market for years, but it has lost out to new, highly competitive vehicles like the Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza, Hyundai Venue, Kia Sonet and many other cars in the segment.
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