Ford Rolls On

The boisterous recovery in the US automotive sector has carried all major players to strong sales and healthy balance sheets. For Ford Motor Company, the road to full recovery has been a little smoother as it did not take the government bailout — and go bankrupt in the wake of the financial crisis.

This week Ford reported 1 st quarter net income up 15 percent to $1.6 billion — and its US sales during the same period increasing 11 percent — a healthy 5 points ahead of the industry average. And though acclaimed for its global manufacturing and marketing strategy…Ford losses this year in Europe are projected at $2 billion — and another $218 million in South America.

On the product side, Ford has made a big pitch to reignite excitement in its storied Lincoln brand…with initial success stymied by embarrassing production delays that stalled deliveries to customers…some of whom presumably moved on to other car purchases.

The core Ford product line is the clear winner for the company. With stylish new updates of the Explorer SUV, Taurus and the latest Fusion and Focus — backed by the market-topping F-150 pick-ups — at least on home turf 2013 will be a good year for Ford.