Despite the promising progress on the parts of GM and Chrysler, Ford is quickly putting distance between itself and the other two companies; certainly a perk of operating free of the interference of the federal government and bankruptcy court. The company”s year over year sales for September rose 40% and it gained retail market share in 23 of the last 24 months. GM”s year over year sales rose by 11% last month.
Morgan Stanley has indicated its confidence Ford, initiating stock coverage with a target price of $20 per share. The stock is currently at $13, and was below $3 two years ago.
“Our forecasts give Ford credit for a transformational turnaround yielding performance far exceeding its own historical averages and places the company among a select group of global automotive firms,” said analyst Adam Jones.
The momentum is likely to continue, as Ford is moving briskly toward electrifying its fleet and expects 5% of its global feet to be a mix of gas-electric hybrids, plug-in hybrids, and battery powered electric vehicles. That share is expected to reach as high as 25% by 2020.
Fords recent streamlining has also helped; as of 2006, Ford was producing 97 nameplates on 27 platforms, which will be reduced dramatically after Mercury is discontinued to 32 nameplates on 15 platforms worldwide.
– By: Stephen Calogera