The Ford+ plan has the Blue Oval transforming itself by splitting into two separate divisions: Model E and Blue. They will operate as separate business units with a focus on electric vehicles and combustion-powered vehicles, respectively, but will be able to share innovations. This strategy will let the business excel against both new EV competitors and established automakers, Ford claims.
According to Ford, the Model E division will have the "speed of a startup at the leading edge of technology" while also having access to the automaker's high-volume manufacturing ability. This will include developing the EV platforms, batteries, electric motors, inverters, charging, and related systems.
Gallery: 2022 Ford Mustang Mach-E GT Performance Edition
The group will also be responsible for developing the software platforms and user experience for the whole brand's vehicles. This will include future connected car tech and advanced driving assistance systems. The team will also develop a new vehicle shopping experience that will be "simple, intuitive e-commerce platforms, transparent pricing, and personalized customer support," according to Ford's announcement
The automaker is pledging to build more than 2 million EVs a year by 2026. This is a significant increase because recent info from Ford has the company touting the production of 600,000 EVs globally each year by the end of 2023.
Ford will also invest $5 billion into EVs in 2022. The goal is for half of the global volume to be EVs by 2030.
The Blue division will be responsible for combustion-powered vehicles like Mustang, F-150, and Bronco. The company will continue to invest in combustion engines, but this will happen only in very specific segments like trucks, according to CEO Jim Farley during the live stream announcing this new strategy.
"Ford Blue is going to be the profit engine of Ford delivering the lifeblood to fund our future," Stuart Rowley, Chief Transformation and Quality Officer, said in the video above. This suggests that the ICE vehicles are largely going to fund electric vehicle development at least in the near future.
A rumor from February indicated that Ford was considering spinning off its EV operations into a separate company to appeal to investors. During the live stream, Farley confirmed that the company thought about this option. The automaker decided that it had enough capital to create the Model E division. This keeps everything under one corporate structure and allows for easier communication with Ford Blue.