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Downsizing a Giant

Downsizing a Giant

When Henry Ford produced the first Model T in 1908, it was said that the vehicle “put America on wheels.” A century later the company created by the great innovator is hoping to be a part of the dramatic shift in the way we drive, only this time around they’ll be making those wheels a little bit smaller.

The New York Times reports that Ford plans to shift their focus from trucks and SUVs to smaller vehicles (this doesn't come as a huge shock; earlier this summer there was rumor that some of the plants that produce trucks and SUVs would shut down). With gas prices what they are—not to mention consumer interest in creating a greener lifestyle—it's no surprise Ford wants to think small!

“Trucks and SUVs have been so central to their strategy for so long, but the bottom line is that consumers have moved on,” David E. Cole, chairman of the Center for Automotive Research told the Times. The one-time auto industry leader will switch its strategy by producing smaller cars like the Ford Fiesta, which is now being manufactured in Europe, back here in the good ol’ U.S. of A. They will also utilize their Mercury line to transition to smaller vehicles.

If you’re having a hard time stomaching the fact that your next new car might just have to be a smaller one, does it help to know that it will be produced in your own back yard? Or are you already on the small car bandwagon? [NYT]

Posted: 7/23/08