Monday, May 18, 2009

Ford UK not ready for their Clunker program, could delay hurt sales?

Read the story, linked in title, about Ford's problems with the UK's "Scrapage" program, their version of Cash for Clunkers. With vehicle sales down globally, many countries are starting their own version of this scheme. In the UK, it seems that Ford was negotiating and trying to get online with the program from day one, but with so many changes right up until the last minute they were caught out on day one of the program. From what I've read in 2 different articles, the program gives people a 2,ooo Pound incentive for trading in a car 10+ years old when they purchase a new more fuel efficient vehicle. Half of the incentive from the government and half from the manufacturer ( that's about $3,000 with $1,500 from Ford ) and the lag is that Ford needed to get new forms to 550 dealers to initiate the program. Ford's not crying about the money, it's just that with all the last minute wheeling and dealing they couldn't cross the t's and dot the i's on the paperwork quick enough. Fiat was rumored to be in the same boat, but they denied that was the case.

Patience my UK bretheren, FoMoCo is doing it's best to get their ducks in a row.
I wonder if this will initially hurt Ford sales? Doubtful in the long run, what's a 2-3 delay in buying a new car?

UPDATE: CarScoop has an interesting piece about the European sales as they relate to programs like this. And Ford's new Fiesta is doing very very well!

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