The Ford Motor Company lost $1.2 billion in the first quarter of this year but they don’t plan on staying down for long. They have big plans to make a splash in the AWD market. Right now Subaru is king of the hill when it comes to all-wheel-drive cars but Ford could challenge them for dominance.
Ford’s goal is to sell half a million by next year. This would definitely make them a major player in this area because the total sold for this year was only 1.5 million. Ford’s aim will be to capture the middle market. BMW and Audi, among others, offer AWD luxury models while Subaru has catered to the other end of the market.
The plan will bring all-wheel-drive to the company’s Ford Fusion, Mercury Milan and Lincoln MKZ mid-sized sedans in August and to the new Ford Edge and Lincoln MKX crossovers this fall. Ford already offers it as an option in other vehicles, such as the Freestyle crossover and the Five Hundred full-sized sedan.
Many drivers value AWD vehicles for their stability in harsh conditions and off-road terrain. Currently, most AWD vehicles are trucks or SUVs. Ford is hoping to attract these SUV buyers as some are turning to crossover SUVs based on car designs.
Ford is not the only automaker getting into this field. GM and Chrysler will offer new AWD options soon, although on a smaller scale than Ford. You might expect Subaru to feel some pressure now, but they seem to welcome the help to convert the masses to all-wheel-drive passenger cars.