FORD'S vital Raptor 4WD
program will go to the US for
budget approval later this year,
and Mr Polites is nervous about
the reply he might get from
"Hopefully it will get approved,
but at this stage my concern is
we're putting it into an
environment a bit different to
last year — in terms of getting
approval," he said.
"The US economy is tougher,
the Firestone issue is going to
take $4 billion of cash, profits
are going to be lower, so the
environment you're going into
asking for money is a lot
tougher than it would have been
last year or the year before."
Mr Polites said the cost of the
program (about $200 million),
although small in global terms,
would not help Raptor's cause.
Mr Polites also:
Rejected a report on the
Ford-watcher Blue Oval News
web site that the Barra (AV)
Falcon program was exceeding
budgets and could cause some
anxiety in the US: "We've spent
more on engineering than we
planned, but that report's just
not true," he said.
Rejected talk of plans to
import the Focus in the short
term. He said Ford Australia
would reconsider the "C-Car"
situation when the next
generation Focus and Laser
were merged onto the same
Ford need the Raptor project for many reasons. One is that they have to get a constant wheel drive program up and running, or they will get left at the alter in a way that is even bigger then the V8 debarkle.
From a business perspective, the money already sunk into the Raptor program would be down the crapper if they didn't go ahead with it. If they do, it would be bound to be reimbursed in sales over time. The whole AWD technology is so vital to Ford at this point in time that to decide against it would be like shooting off your legs and entering a marathon.
Now powered by PCOTY WINNING SR20DET - 32% engine weight, 37% capacity, 50% cylinder count
Clicky clicky here for previous ride! I still miss her!
The AutoGuide.com network consists of the largest network of enthusiast-owned enthusiast-operated automotive communities.
AutoGuide.com provides the latest car reviews, auto show coverage, new car prices, and automotive news. The AutoGuide network operates more than 100 automotive forums where our users consult peers for shopping information and advice, and share opinions as a community.