Ford Motor Company’s new president and CEO Jim Hackett has outlined plans which he says will make the car giant “fit” to compete in a changing industry.
Jim Hackett said Ford would shift resources from traditional cars to SUVs and trucks, while investing in electric power and tech services.
Ford will also automate its manufacturing processes more to help to cut costs by $14 billion.
Jim Hackett identified the goals after a 100-day review.
He became Ford’s president and CEO in May, replacing Mark Fields, who had been in the top job for only three years.
Investors have been concerned that Ford is not moving quickly enough in markets such as China and in sectors such as automated cars to fend off competitors, including new ones emerging from Silicon Valley.
Jim Hackett said Ford needs to automate and simplify its production processes and invest $7 billion in its successful products, such as SUVs and light trucks, which have driven US sales this year.
Ford is also planning to make its vehicles more tech-savvy, with 90% of its vehicles sold around the world “built with connectivity” by 2020.
Executives said those features – such as easy compatibility with phones and other devices – would help attract customers to the brand.
They said they also opened opportunities for new lines of business, such as medical transport, ride-hailing and goods delivery.
Ford already operates a shuttle bus service called Chariot in four US cities and is set to expand it further by the end of the year. It said it has signed agreements to work with cities such as Mumbai on transport.
Jim Hackett said Ford had been slow to shift to electrification because of the costs. But it is working on partnerships with companies such as Zotye in China, where the government has called for quotas related to electric car sales.