New automotive technologies, such as
self-driving or autonomous cars. These could increase demand for new models and
sales. The publicity-generated new technologies could also increase interest in
Volkswagen’s Diesel scandal: Ford
has not marketed any diesel-powered vehicles in the United States (Only Hybrids
and EV’s), which means it will not be hurt by the scandal. Ford could take some
market share by marketing disgruntled Volkswagen customers who want a clean
economical petrol-powered car. Volkswagen will lose the competitive edge that
diesel mileage gives it.
Ford has recently launched its commuter
shuttle service Chariot, Chariot offers a hassle-free on demand commuting
service with professional, background checked drivers who pick up and drop off
workers in specially designed Ford Transit Minibuses. Ford are looking to
supplement existing public transit bus routes and local trains with commuter
routes that aren’t well served by either of those existing solutions. Ford
Smart Mobility, the company Ford founded to focus on mobility alternatives to
vehicle ownership, acquired Chariot in September 2016 and since then Chariot
has expanded to more cities across the USA and recently London. This allows
Chariot to undercut private rideshare programs such as Uber and Lyft as bills
are split between passengers and only offer set routes which lets Chariot
calculate fuel costs more efficiently.
The growing presence of German and Japanese
automakers in the vital North American auto market, particularly Volkswagen and
Toyota. Toyota is now competing directly with Ford in the pickup truck market,
and Volkswagen is considering entering that market. Mercedes and Nissan are now
competing directly with Ford in the commercial van market with the Sprinter and
NV Cargo models.
Today’s young demographic are driving less
than previous generations, news stories indicate. This means less interest in
cars and could lead to fewer car sales at some point in the future.
The Volkswagen scandal could limit the demand
for diesel-powered vehicles, including the Ford F150. However, Ford wish to
counteract this by offering a wider range of Ecoboost engines in 2.7 and 3.5 Litre
variants. Which offer near diesel levels of torque for pulling heavy payload
but with the emissions levels and refinement of a petrol-powered engine thanks
to turbocharging and direct injection. Ford were one of the first to introduce
this in the light truck segment.
Some companies have a head start in
alternative fuel vehicles. Toyota and Honda are ahead in the production of fuel
cell vehicles and are pushing for widespread adoption and more available fuel
cell filling stations.