US:Ford sees cost savings in shorter product time
Ford sees cost savings in shorter product time
DETROIT -- Ford Motor Co. has trimmed the time it takes to bring a new vehicle to the market by eight to 10 months, resulting in cost savings of up to 60 percent, a top executive said on Tuesday.
Starting mid-2007, Ford vehicles that hit the market will have been developed in about 18 months, Phil Martens, Ford's group vice president of product creation told reporters.
Cutting vehicle development time can help Ford better compete with Asian rivals such as Toyota Motor Corp., an industry leader in manufacturing and product development systems.
Toyota and other Japanese automakers have been relentlessly increasing their share of the U.S. market at the expense of Ford and cross-town rival General Motors. Ford's U.S. market share, including Volvo, Jaguar, Land Rover and Aston Martin, is down 0.8 percentage points to 19.0 percent year-to-date, according to the Automotive News Data Center.
Martens spoke at a new $16 million safety testing facility that will also help the automaker cut product development time.
He declined to reveal how much money Ford will save with the shorter vehicle development time. The automaker now takes about 28 months to get a vehicle to market after the design of the new product is finalized.
Ford also announced that it is licensing a technology that reduces the time needed to develop stamped automobile parts by six to 10 weeks, which in turn will cut the time it takes to develop a vehicle.
That technology is expected to save the company more than $20 million annually, Ford said.
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.....