Two key components might make the go back of a right-hand power (RHD) Ford F-Series pickup economically possible for the primary time in years – opening the door for a hypothetical go back to Australia.
The extra obtrusive of those is the hot addition of a diesel engine to what has lengthy been the United States marketplace’s primary automobile (greater than 800,000 annual gross sales there). The 2nd is the luck Ford has loved by way of ‘globalising’ the enduring Mustang fashion, surroundings a possible precedent.
Sales buffs will know that the in the neighborhood engineered Ford Ranger is the corporate’s greatest supplier by way of miles in our marketplace, and certainly is the total 2nd biggest-selling automobile in the entire nation. Number two in Ford’s Australian ranks? Mustang.
Furthermore, with utes now making up 17.five in line with cent of the Australian new automobile marketplace, extra manufacturers are having a look at choices for us. RAM permits ASV to transform the 2500 in the neighborhood to manufacturing unit requirements, whilst Nissan is strongly taking into account making the Titan RHD.
To the beef of the tale. Peter Fleet is the British team vice-president of Ford Asia Pacific, overseeing the important thing marketplace of China but additionally little outdated Australia. We had the danger to talk with him at this week’s Detroit Auto Show.
“Yes, to answer you directly. The availability of diesel in F-150 would make a discussion about a vehicle that could be sold in RHD a less difficult conversation,” he mentioned.
Of route, lest we take him out of context, he added: “But it’s still a very challenging conversation. But there are lots of markets that’d love to have F-150”.
Perhaps extra attention-grabbing, regardless that, used to be Fleet’s trace that the large luck of constructing the Mustang for the entire international, in this present generation, might open the corporate as much as increasing this program of ‘internationalising’. The Pony Car has been a spoil in Australia, China, the United Kingdom, Germany, and extra.
“In the company, when you look at the success we had from Mustang. What did we do there? We took one of our iconic North American brands and globalised it. There is a lesson there. Those kind of things work,” he postulated.
“I am a big advocate of trying to make more of those iconic ‘brands’. If I have any opportunity to bring those to Australia I’d be at front of queue.”
The just right information is that Fleet’s direct supervisor is James Farley, who in-turn studies at once to the Ford world president and CEO Jim Hackett. So you’d consider he carries just a little weight internally.
For background, what exactly is retaining Ford again from providing the F-Series – now not presented in F-250 guise to us since 2006, and in F-150 guise since 1993 – in factory-backed RHD, forcing large truck enthusiasts to supply in the neighborhood transformed, dear choices from corporations like Performax?
It’s now not homologation, actually. It’s simply manufacturing scale. Any RHD gross sales can be a drop in the sea in comparison to what Ford manages in North America with a more practical, LHD-only operation.
“It’s all about scale,” Fleet showed. “That’s the tricky bit, it’s only that. Can you get enough scale to warrant the development of RHD, and which plant do you put put it in?”
Now, on the possibility of planting false concepts with this tale, Fleet used to be requested if any hypothesis that the F-Series used to be already green-lit for RHD might be drawing a proverbial lengthy bow.
Pictured: 2001 Australia-market Ford F-Series
“I think so… a little ahead of the curve I think,” he mentioned, including that “it’s even more difficult to do it mid-cycle”. The present Ford F-150 premiered in 2015, so the next one isn’t due till the early 2020s – regardless that construction starts approach previous.
Nevertheless, it’s a good assumption RHD Ford F-150 in next-generation shape, made as a part of a world program, turns out a more potent probability than it's been in a very long time. Fingers crossed?
Two new reasons why RHD might happen in next generation