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Ford business split will mean non-negotiable EV prices, less dealer inventory

Ford’s recently announced business split into EV and non-EV . units may lead to changes in the dealer experience, according to Automotive News.

Earlier this week, Blue Oval announced plans to split its passenger vehicle business into two separate units. The Ford Model E will handle electric vehicles, while the Ford Blue will handle internal combustion vehicles (both hybrid and plug-in hybrids). They will operate in conjunction with the existing Ford Pro business unit for commercial vehicles.

Ford Mustang Mach-E GT 2021

Ford Mustang Mach-E GT 2021

Automotive News reports that Ford is considering another sales model for the Ford Model E that would adopt some aspects of the direct sales model favored by Tesla and some EV startups. According to the report, that will include non-negotiable prices for the Ford EV, as well as less dealer inventory.

However, the Model E will still be bound by all of Ford’s longstanding franchise agreements, so a move to direct sales is not planned, the report notes. Electric vehicles will still be an option for Ford dealers, though on the contrary, Ford has not said whether dealers will actually be able to ditch internal combustion vehicles and only sell electric vehicles.

The intense experience of negotiating with the dealer, as well as the specific requirements of the electric vehicle, warrants a change in approach. But getting dealers to work with the wholesale shift to electric vehicles – as well as new ways of doing business – can be difficult.

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning cold weather test in Alaska

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning cold weather test in Alaska

Require dealers to comply upgrade to sell electric cars is a long-term trend — and must be faced by decision holders. Some Cadillac dealers decided not to go with the brand’s plan to switch entirely to electric vehicles by the end of the decade.

Volvo also announced plans switch to online sales started with EVs – changing the role of dealers – but due to clear objections from dealers, that plan was shelved.

Meanwhile, dealerships thrive in 2021, as weak supply and strong demand allow many people to shell out extra cash for vehicles in demand—including electric cars.

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