Bill Ford Jr. shares thoughts on auto industry amid changing times

Ford believes another recession is inevitable

By Rod Meloni - Reporter, CFP ®, Amber Ainsworth

DETROIT - Bill Ford Jr. shared his thoughts about the auto industry and Ford Motor Co.'s place in that industry as times change.

He thinks a fast-changing auto industry is not just challenging, but a great opportunity. He believes his great grandfather, Henry Ford, would love the way things currently are.

Ford said he believes that not all automakers will survive the evolution to come, and the ones that do make it will have to work together because costs are so high, especially when it comes to electrification and autonomous vehicles.

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"Ultimately, it's about the company that can harness the technology and deliver it," he said.

Despite a need to work with other automakers, Ford said he doesn't see a case where the family would sell parts of the company as it changes with the times.

He shared an example of how his company has been dealing with a changing world; the automaker invested in a shuttle service, called Chariot, that it closed when it failed.

Ford also noted that being ready for a recession is important for the survival of automakers.

"It's inevitable a recession is going to come, and we are trying to get our house in order in order to be able to invest in new products and new technology," he said.

While there is opportunity and the company is preparing for the future, Ford said the current political climate is dangerous to his business because it leads to nothing getting done.

"We make decisions, billion dollar decisions," he said. "Right now, we're flying blind and that's not the way we want to do it."

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