Re: U.S.A.:Excursion may get extended lease on life
Excursion extinction on hold at Ford
Sales of big SUV slide, but it's still profitable
October 28, 2003
BY JAMIE BUTTERS
FREE PRESS BUSINESS WRITER
Ford Motor Co. is holding off on plans to shelve the Excursion, its biggest SUV, next year.
Ford Division President Steve Lyons hinted as much earlier this month, telling Ward's Automotive Reports: "We're selling 2,000 a month, but even if sales go to 1,000 we could keep it in the lineup."
Another person at Ford, who declined to be identified, confirmed that is the plan, without saying how long Ford will continue the model.
Through September, Ford had sold 17,887 Excursions this year, a 22-percent drop from the previous year. In 2001, Ford sold 34,710 Excursions -- almost 3,000 a month. But with a profit estimated at $10,000 per vehicle, Ford may be reluctant to walk away from the SUV based on the Super Duty F-250 pickup. Both vehicles are made at the Kentucky Truck Assembly plant in Louisville, Ky.
As the most humongous SUV sold in the United States -- nearly 19 feet long and weighing about 7,200 pounds -- the Excursion was attacked by those who accused Ford of environmental irresponsibility. Before Excursion's 1999 introduction, the Sierra Club dubbed it the "Ford Valdez" -- a reference to the Exxon tanker that ran aground near Alaska in 1989.
But that was before General Motors Corp.'s 8,600-pound Hummer H2 -- so hefty it isn't covered by national fuel-economy rules -- hit the streets and won the wrath of the nation's environmentalists.
"The danger is that today they want to do away with big SUVs," Lyons told Ward's. "Tomorrow will it be big houses?"
My first car was a 67 Mustang Coupe, 2nd one was a 67 Cougar XR-7, 3rd one was a 66 Mustang Coupe. Why did I get rid of these cars for ? I know why, because I'm stupid, stupid, stupid.
My next Ford.....