According to a report from Ward’s Auto released last week, the global number of cars exceeded 1.015 billion in 2010.
This is a massive market made even more attractive as the ‘final automotive frontiers’ – China and Africa are being explored.
And which companies have had the most sales of their vehicles?
The top 5 selling vehicles of all time:
- Toyota Corolla
- Ford F-Series
- Volkswagen Golf
- Volswagen Beetle
- Ford Escort (now branded Ford Focus)
Fitting perhaps then that Ford treated local media to a working lunch yesterday hosted by no less a personage than David Schoch, the Ford Motor Company group vice president and president for Asia Pacific which includes South Africa. Accompanying David was Jeff Nemeth, Ford Motor Company of South Africa president and CEO.
The working lunch was to celebrate Ford achieving their highest retail sales month since September 2011 (in February 2013), an all-time sales record for the Ford Focus and the Ford Ranger as well as increased capacity at the Struandale engine plant which has led to a succesful export order of Duratorq TDCi engines to North America. This year will also see the most launches of new Ford vehicles in the history of Ford in South Africa as the range is expanded to 17 base models.
David and Jeff are particularly proud of the locally produced 3,2-litre Duratorq five-cylinder (i5) turbodiesel engine, which was recently introduced in the New Ford Ranger. This engine will be used in the Transit van when it joins Ford’s North American product line-up for the first time in 2013 as the 3,2 litre Power Stroke diesel. The Transit is Europe’s best-selling commercial vehicle.
“The expansion of our Duratorq TDCi production capacity for North America is an exceptionally proud and important achievement for Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa, as it’s the first time we will be exporting engines to the United States,” explained Jeff Nemeth.
“Coming on the back of the extremely successful launch of the New Ranger, this will increase our annual production capacity of the Duratorq TDCi engine by over 31,000 engines per year.”
“The expansion programme will see new equipment being added to the current machining and assembly lines, without affecting our current production and global export programme for the Duratorq TDCi engine that powers the New Ranger.”
The Duratorq TDCi will be exported to the Kansas City Assembly Plant in Claycomo, Mo., which received a $1,1-billion investment for the Transit programme. Transit production, is scheduled to begin in late 2013.
According to an economic impact report, on the heels of Ford’s R3 billion local investment to produce the next-generation Ford Ranger the economic spinoff will contribute R79 billion to the Gauteng economy over the next 15 years and create almost 700 000 direct and indirect employment opportunities.
No small wonder then that David and Jeff are pretty upbeat about the longevity and expansion of the local Ford Struandale engine plant.
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