Ford plans to cut Fusion, Taurus and Fiesta from vehicle lineup

Ford seeks to accelerate profit margins, drop less popular models

Ford seeks to accelerate profit margins, drop less popular models

The changes include getting rid of all cars in the region during the next four years except for the Mustang sports auto and a compact Focus crossover vehicle, CEO Jim Hackett said as the company released first-quarter earnings.

It comes as little surprise then that Ford announced that it will not pursue next-generation builds for sedans like the Fusion and Taurus, which were at one time or another major facets of its portfolio.

Ford's shares traded up about 2.2% in after-hours trading Wednesday at $11.35 after closing at $11.11, in a 52-week range of $10.14 to $13.48.

In its statement, Ford said it will rely exclusively on a two-car lineup, the new Focus Active-a raised, body-cladded version of its all-new Focus hatchback (a crossover, in other words)-and the Mustang.

The announcement came as Ford said it earned a first-quarter profit of $1.7 billion, a 9% increase compared to the same period past year. As usual, North America drove Ford's profits for the quarter with pretax earnings of $1.9 billion. We are determined to turn this business around right throughout the whole company. In fact, it looks as though the Mustang and an upcoming Focus Active crossover are the only cars that will survive the cuts.

During the company's first-quarter financials conference call on Wednesday, Ford presumably just said, ah, the hell with it, and more or less confirmed that it's dropping the axe on four of its cars.

Three injured on Air India flight as another plane window detaches
The video also shows two overhead oxygen masks dangling from overhead module, having fallen when the Dreamliner hit turbulence. Passengers aboard Air India are coming to terms with a severe turbulence which left three injured and jet's window cracked.

Ford officials already signaled that some cars would be removed from the portfolio as consumers gravitate toward far more profitable pickups, SUVs and crossovers.

Shanks suggested that Ford could reduce investment in certain geographic regions or exit them completely if it did not see adequate returns on the horizon.

Ford plans to cut $11 billion in operating costs and $5 billion in capital expenditures between 2019 and 2022.

"The threat of tariffs, particularly we believe on steel, had an impact on market prices", Shanks said during an interview on "After the Bell". The company previously predicted $14 billion in cuts by 2022.

For comparison, Ford's light truck sales rose 7.2 percent, while GM's light truck sales jumped 26.1 percent. It lost $149 million in South America, 37 percent less than in the first quarter of 2017, and earned $119 million in Europe, down 43 percent. Ford's sedans are slow sellers with profit margins that aren't as high.

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