Ford CEO says 65% of US dealerships agree to sell EVs

Ford F-150 Lightning trucks manufactured at the Rouge Electric Vehicle Center in Dearborn, Michigan.

Courtesy of Ford Motor Co.

DETROIT – Approximately 65% ​​of Ford Motors Dealerships have agreed to sell electric vehicles as the company invests billions to expand production and sales of battery-powered cars and trucks, CEO Jim Farley said Monday.

About 1,920 of Ford’s roughly 3,000 dealerships in the United States have agreed to sell electric vehicles, according to Farley. He said about 80% of those dealerships have opted for the higher level of investment in electric vehicles.

Ford has offered its dealers the option of becoming “EV Certified” under one of two programs – with planned investments of $500,000 or $1.2 million. Top-tier dealerships, which incur upfront costs of $900,000, receive “elite” certification and are awarded more electric vehicles.

Ford, unlike its Crosstown rival General Motors, allows dealerships to opt out of selling electric vehicles and continue to sell the company’s cars. GM has offered buyouts to Buick and Cadillac dealerships that don’t want to invest in selling electric vehicles.

Dealers who have decided not to invest in electric vehicles may do so when Ford reopens the certification process in 2027.

“We think EV adoption in the United States will take time, so we wanted to give dealers a chance to come back,” Farley told an Automotive News conference.

Ford’s plans to sell electric vehicles have been a point of contention since the company spun off its all-electric vehicle business earlier this year into a separate division known as Model e. Farley said the automaker and its dealerships need to reduce costs, increase profits and provide customers with better and more consistent sales experiences.

Farley also reiterated on Monday that a direct sales model is estimated to be thousands of dollars cheaper for the automaker than the auto industry’s traditional franchise system.

Wall Street analysts have widely viewed direct-to-consumer sales as an advantage for maximizing profits. However, there have been growing pains for You’re herewhich uses the sales model for the maintenance of its vehicles.

Ford’s current lineup of all-electric vehicles includes the Ford F-150 Lightning pickup, Mustang Mach-E crossover and e-Transit van. The automaker is expected to launch a litany of other electric vehicles around the world as part of a plan to invest tens of billions of dollars in technologies by 2026.

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