Ford's December sales were down 9 percent, but Ford, Mercury and Lincoln crossover utility vehicles paced the industry's fastest-growing segment with a gain of 62 percent for all of 2007. Ford sales analyst, George Pipas says that's more than triple the industry-wide growth of 17 percent. Why the dominance?
| "Well, it can be traced to the fact that Ford has the freshest lineup of crossovers in the industry, so with that fresh model of lineup and consumers appetite we benefited greatly and did well all year long." :14 sec. |
Even with a weakened economy expected in 2008, Pipas sees continued growth in the crossover segment.
|Cut# 2:|| "This category of vehicle has bucked the industry trends, year in and year out in this decade and it's due to consumers appetite for versatility for lighter, more fuel efficient vehicles, more car like ride and handling, and higher gas prices, we expect continued crossover growth at Ford." :20 sec |
However, even with growth in the crossover segment expected, Pipas did say they also expect to see a downward trend in overall sales in the first half of 2008.
|Cut# 3:|| |
"We do expect to see growth in crossovers, as I indicated, as well as in our Lincoln brand because they get a brand new sedan, the Lincoln MKS, but apart from that, I think that it would be fair to say that with a weaker economy we would expect Ford sales in '08 to be lower then they were in '07, along the lines of the industry." :23 sec.
Pipas says with these lower sales expectations comes a need for adaptation in order to meet their long term company goals to be profitable by 2009.