Ford India is banking heavily on the partnership with Mahindra to improve sales as they are working on new models
Ford India has the EcoSport as its current best-selling vehicle domestically. Even though the American manufacturer has 20 years of experience in the Indian market and had so many successes in the past with models like Escort, Icon, Fiesta, Figo, at present there is no big volume turner except EcoSport.
Ford is making money in India and it comes more from exports. The company is working on an aggressive cost-cutting measures to improve profit as they had decided to slow down hiring on all departments except in engineering and technology centre reportedly. The management has evaluated positions and decided not to hire, which is why so many positions are vacant.
Ford gives two annual increments to its employees in March and October, but the company decided to scrap October increment. To further reduce costs, Ford shifted its corporate office from Cyber City, Gurgaon which is one of the plush areas in the city to another location in the same city, and they are moving large number of employees to Chennai office.
The American manufacturer has also decided not to launch any products independently in the country until 2020 according to the report and they announced a strategic partnership with Mahindra earlier this year. Both these companies are jointly developing new products like SUVs and compact SUV models, which will be launched by the end of this decade.
The upcoming compact SUV will be either based on SsangYong Tivoli platform or Ford’s own platform, which is currently under development. But the design of final product will be different for each manufacturer as they are not interested in badge engineering. The first product from this new partnership will be a SUV, which will be positioned between EcoSport and Endeavour.
The upcoming SUV will likely be based on next generation XUV 500 platform, which is jointly developed by Ford, Mahindra and SsangYong. Ford will use Mahindra’s next generation BSVI diesel engine and the dragon series petrol engines from Ford that will be shared with Mahindra. The future of Ford in Indian market will depend heavily on the success of its partnership with Mahindra.