The Detroit Auto Show 2011 is here, and Ford pickups are making major industry noise. That’s been a trend so far in the first quarter of 2011, reports Reuters. A top Ford executive told the news service that the rise is predicted to continue, and Ford’s success should also be a strong indicator for the U.S. auto market as a whole.
2011 Detroit Auto Show paves way for big-time sales
The Detroit Auto Show 2011, aka the North American International Auto Show, is the perfect platform to catapult an automotive brand forward. It’s not as if Ford needs any help, however. According to the automaker’s worldwide sales and marketing chief Jim Farley, Ford’s sales forecast is holding steady at a very high level for 2011, in the area of 12.5 to 13.5 million vehicles sold. That’s up about 2 million from the previous year, when sales had already increased by 19 percent from 2009. Ford’s 2010 sales numbers marked the largest single-year increase since 1984.
Farley was quoted as being “very optimistic” that Ford pickup sales, a vital part of the automaker’s business, will lead the way through 2011.
“How strong the pickup market is in percentage of the market is important. Pickup trucks were around 12 percent of the industry (in 2010),” Farley told Reuters.
New tax laws should boost truck sales
Ford and other automakers expect the new tax laws that went into effect in 2011 to give truck sales a welcome boost, as businesses that purchase fleet vehicles will receive tax breaks. Ford pickups like the famous F-series have always been popular sellers, and new laws should only serve to increase Ford’s dominance in the category.
Small cars, electric vehicles among Detroit Auto Show 2011 highlights
The newest Ford Focus, in both its standard and electric vehicle formats also proved popular at the 2011 Detroit Auto Show.
“We have not had this kind of competitive C-segment car at Ford, a global car, in a long time,” Farley said.
As small car sales make up about 28 percent of the U.S. market – and the Ford Focus is a top seller within the niche – Ford expects great success. Only consumer concerns about EV range could hamper sales of cars like the Focus Electric, which Ford hails as its flagship leading into the full EV era.