Ford Motor Co. (NYSE:F) Q4 2018 Earnings Conference Call Transcript

Jan 23, 2019 • 05:30 pm ET


Ford Motor Co. (NYSE:F) Q4 2018 Earnings Conference Call Transcript


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Q & A

(Operator Instructions) Your first question comes from the line of David Tamberrino with Goldman Sachs.

David Tamberrino

Great. Yes, thanks for taking my questions here. Jim, the way you kind of communicated how you think about 2018 as a year and 2017 as a year kind of planning from a redesign perspective. If we're to fast forward to the end of 2019, and maybe into the middle of 2020, will 2019 be known as an action year for Ford?

James P. Hackett

Unquestionably, David. And it's worth pointing this out that the time in -- I'm going to say, in 2017 when we had our first investor conference to the beginning of 2018, we worked on the strategy. We addressed the product portfolio from stem to stern. You've just heard from Jim how important that was. We were constipated in product development. And when we did that, we updated the way we thought about car architectures and propulsion. So we addressed three big issues all at the same time, got our cycle plan in shape to taking costs out to boot. The second thing we did is we -- I was really pleased with the AV work with Argo. They really started at the same time in June 2017, so they've only been in real action in 20 months. So in that time that we are planning, we put a lot of work towards thinking about the evolution of AV. I can just share that independently lots of people looking at this business and looking at all the competitors have rated Argo very high. It's not surprising given the talent that we've got there.

And we -- when then we started tackle mobility, and you've heard me talk about David that the idea of building a cloud structure and connectivity, we had none of the vehicles really connected, back, and when the call to action was being asked for. So we had to get that through product development and now the plan to monetize that. All those things are in shape. And then as I toured with you, if you look at North America, its exemplary for me the way management team gathering to work and make all this stuff happen with Kumar has really gone very well. They ran into some headwinds that they frankly offset a lot of it and then some they couldn't. And then we had a footfall with warranty this year that Joe can explain in more detail if that helps everyone understand that we've arrested, we think, a lot of the issues, and some of them were caused from the past that you just have to deal with.

When I think about then, in October '17 the call from very smart people following the industry, hey, what are going to do about these markets that are underperforming? Every one of them are being addressed. I also just want to confirm in China that I'm not happy with the way we performed there, but the lessons also showing the market moved