Ford’s direct EV sales experiment goes ahead in Europe - the US can be next

Max McDee, 21 May 2023

During the launch of the Ford E-Tourneo Courier at the Bring On Tomorrow event in Copenhagen, Denmark, Ford executives confirmed the company is going ahead with its new retail business model in Europe. Starting with electric cars, all prices are fixed with sales taking place online in a push to improve customer experience.

According to the company, the online sales and no price negotiations are in response to extensive customer surveys. Ford carried out lengthy research and found that 91% of customers want an option to buy a vehicle entirely online. And 77% of customers want fixed prices with no room for negotiations. On top of that, 69% want their new car delivered at home.

Ford Explorer EV Ford Explorer EV

Ford claims that all surveyed customers agreed that the online sales experience has to be flawless and the success of the new approach will depend on how seamless the entire process is. Having a consistent price means customers can start the buying process at the dealer and complete it at home or the other way around - without worrying about the price change.

Ford wants to be an electric passenger vehicle brand by 2030 and it is bringing 10 new electric cars to Europe by the end of the next year. This is a big push but it is the only way for Ford to remain relevant and stand a chance to fight off the growing competition from China. Making the buying experience for new EV owners, or experienced ones, will help the company to stay ahead of the game.

Ford E-Tourneo Courier Ford E-Tourneo Courier

The electric car lineup from Ford is growing in Europe. Ford Mach-E has been selling for a while now, the new VW-based Ford Explorer just launched and now we have the E-Tourneo Courier. Add to it the E-Transit Courier, E-Transit Custom, and the Ford F-150 Lightning and the model range is getting quite comprehensive. The new all-electric Puma is about to join its siblings and there is another electric SUV coupe in the making - at this pace, Europe will have the 10 promised EVs well before 2024 is out.

While customers may favor online sales and fixed prices, the same cannot be said about all dealers. The majority have accepted the change and are switching to the new program called Model e Certified, some are going for the Certified Elite EV program. But some dealers want nothing to do with it and as a result will be forced to sell only ICE-powered vehicles.

Ford F-150 Lightning is heading to Europe Ford F-150 Lightning is heading to Europe

Ford believes the new sales model will improve customer satisfaction and will bring clarity when it comes to ordering a new car and following the delivery process. The company wants to avoid mistakes from the past, the Bronco buyers were left in the dark for months without any updates is possibly one of the best examples here.

Bringing the direct sales business model to the US won’t be as straightforward. The franchise dealers are a powerful group and their rights are protected by legislation. Tesla found out that selling cars to the customers directly is not as easy but the company has just scored a legal victory in Delaware and you can be sure, Ford is paying close attention to the outcome of this case.



Reader comments

    Nothing yet. Be the first to comment.



    Popular models