Ford sets ambitious goals in China

07 December, 2017, 09:53 | Author: Leticia Walters
  • JV ford agreement china

Ford Motor Company in China is reportedly ready to start trying out direct-to-consumer vehicle sales online in China, selling through China's Alibaba via its retail site Tmall. Direct sales from automaker to consumer are possible in China and other global markets, but the practice is generally illegal in most U.S. states. The deal could be announced as early as tomorrow, and it would reportedly allow the USA -based automaker to sell cars on Tmall, which is Alibaba's e-commerce division. The arrangement could also allow Ford to test out "auto vending machines" in China, Reuters said, citing a source familiar with the matter. But Ford executive chairman William C. Ford Jr. thinks China will be the most promising market for the development and sale of electric vehicles, according to the New York Times. The letter of intent will reportedly set down the details of the partnership between the two companies.

Per Automotive News, Ford Executive Chairman Bill Ford and CEO Jim Hackett, who were in Shanghai earlier this week to announce the company's growth strategy for China through 2025, will be among the Ford representatives to meet with Alibaba representatives in Hangzhou on Thursday to sign a letter of intent that will lead to a proper agreement.

However, Ford could use the new retail concept on Tmall known as Automotive Vending Machine that is a parking garage of many levels, which resembles in some ways a huge vending machine, to sell to consumer directly.

Reuters' source at Ford also reportedly provided details about what Ford's direct-sales presence in China could look like. The vehicles would be ordered via smartphone and delivered to them on the ground floor of the structure.

Auto manufacturers may also find consumers who are more willing to make the switch from gas to electric-powered vehicles.

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