Mark Fields, the chief executive officer of Ford Motor Co., the second largest US automaker, has said he wants the company to follow the lead of successful startups in embarking on the evolution of the automotive industry.
The positive statement came after the automaker posted second quarter financial results that massively topped analyst forecasts, with Ford and other peers now racing to position themselves at the forefront of what Fields dubs as a rare “period of change and disruption in the industry”. That includes the growth of other business scenarios – such as car-sharing but also the advent of autonomous vehicles, connected autos and generally numerous new ways for people to resolve the transportation issue. “We are really pushing ourselves to think, to act, and disrupt like a startup company,” commented Fields, a rather young leader for the automaker that was established by Henry Ford 112 years ago. He also said the startup scenario is being pursued through 25 experiments the company announced this year that seek to cover all mobility needs of the worldwide consumers for the upcoming decades.
“It’s very encouraging that (Fields) and (Executive Chairman) Bill Ford are thinking about this type of thing,” commented Barclays analyst Brian Johnson, though he also pointed out it’s way too early to see if Ford’s efforts into adapting to the evolving auto industry are successful. Ford conventional business was responsible for the second quarter financial results, which yielded the best automotive profit since 2000. That was based on the underlying strength of the traditional pickup truck and sport utility vehicle lines across the North American region.