Ford resumed U.S. production of the midsized Ranger pickup on Monday for initially in seven years.
The move is usually part of a plan to strengthen Ford’s historically robust presence in profitable trucks at a time when the automaker faces pressure coming from shareholders and also also also an uncertain future. Ford shares are down more than 30 percent This kind of year, and also also also the automaker is usually contending with high costs for materials, threats coming from traditional competitors and also also also disruptive tech companies, as well as a trade war.
The second-largest U.S. automaker invested $850 million within the Michigan assembly plant to build the Ranger and also also also the Ford Bronco. The Ranger was discontinued within the U.S. in 2011, nevertheless produced internationally, while the Bronco was discontinued in 1996.
Reintroducing both vehicles to the U.S. market is usually part of the company’s gambit to take advantage of America’s shift in consumer sentiment toward pickups, SUVs and also also also crossovers. Ford plans to replace 75 percent of the vehicles in its lineup by 2020 and also also also will move away coming from selling sedans and also also also compact cars.
The midsize pickup segment is usually growing, and also also also Ford has the potential to snag market share coming from current leader, Toyota, said IHS Markit analyst Stephanie Brinley said.
“Ford has seen the response General Motors has gotten coming from their trucks, and also also also Ford is usually a pickup truck brand in a lot of ways,” she said. “So they finally feel like they can make money there.”
The brand new Ranger will be different coming from its predecessor in some key ways, Brinley said. the idea is usually bigger, and also also also offers a four-door configuration currently seen as essential for any pickup which wants to compete. Trucks are increasingly becoming appealing options for families or buyers who prefer a spacious cabin.
the idea is usually also priced a bit higher, in part, because customers demand more coming from trucks than they have within the past. The outgoing Ranger was very much a bare-bones, entry-level vehicle, Brinley said. The newer variation starts at $24,300, and also also also will come with more safety features and also also also technology.
“The environment has moved on quite dramatically and also also also I don’t know which you could be successful with the same kind of truck the first one was,” she said.