HomeBusinessIn or out: Ford gives dealers ultimatum on EV sales

In or out: Ford gives dealers ultimatum on EV sales

Ford CEO Jim Farley told the brand’s dealers in Las Vegas on Tuesday that they’re either in or out when it comes to selling EVs.

Farley unveiled a new plan requiring dealers to be certified to sell all-electric vehicles, which comes with several hard stipulations.

Two tiers are offered, with the higher Elite tier requiring an investment of up to $1.2 million to install two to three fast-charging stations in each store, while standard certification requires just one, according to an Automotive News report.

Ford has confirmed the details of the report to Fox Business.

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Ford CEO James Farley, speaking here at a 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning all-electric truck launch event in April, told dealers they must meet certain requirements in order to sell Ford’s electric models. (Emily Elconin/Bloomberg via Getty Images/Getty Images)

Elite dealers are allowed to carry EV stock and have demo units, while the rest can only place orders for purchases.

Both must agree to sell their vehicles at non-haggling prices that will be posted on the Ford sales portal, although they may continue to set those prices as they see fit.

Dealers have until October 31 to decide whether to participate in the program, which will begin on January 1, 2024 and run through the end of 2026. Another window to sign up will open in 2027.

Ford CEO Jim Farley

Farley said Ford will continue to invest aggressively in models with combustion engines. (Bill Pugliano/Getty Images/Getty Images)

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Ford split the company in March into the Ford Blue division, which focuses on cars and hybrids with combustion engines, and the all-electric division Ford Model e.

“We don’t want to rush dealers into becoming a Model e-dealer before their market or they are ready,” said Farley.

“We want people to adopt these standards that can be profitable in executing them,” he said. “It won’t be good for the dealers or the business if people adopt these standards and they don’t get a return on their investment. We’re not so excited or dogmatic that we want a certain number of people to take it we would look beyond the financial feasibility of it. That would be a really bad move for us.”

Ford F-150 Lightning Factory

The Ford F-150 Lightning is the brand’s first electric pickup. (Ford/Fox News)

Farley told FOX Business on Tuesday that while the company is adding pure electric vehicles, it will continue to invest aggressively in internal combustion engines (ICE) and hybrid models such as the Ford F-150, Bronco and Mustang.

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“We’re investing in ICE segments where we’re dominant and where we think, if competitors leave the segments, we can actually grow,” said Farley.

“Not all segments will go electric at the same time, and some may never.”

General Motors, which has committed to going all-electric in the U.S. by 2035, has offered acquisitions to Cadillac and Buick dealers who do not want to invest in the infrastructure needed to sell and service electric vehicles.

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