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Auto blogWed, 23 Jul 2014 19:01:00 EST
Ford Motor Company is announcing a major personnel shakeup that could have a dramatic effect on the future of the Lincoln division. Kumar Galhotra (pictured above), currently vice president of engineering at Ford for all of its vehicles worldwide, is taking over as the president of the luxury brand on September 1, replacing Jim Farley. The automaker is also hiring a new head of advanced engineering.
Galhotra has a huge job ahead of him as the new boss of Lincoln worldwide, overseeing product development, marketing, sales and service. His task is to turn the luxury division into a world-class brand as quickly as possible, and he reports directly to Ford President and CEO Mark Fields.
"These changes underscore our commitment to build on the success of our One Ford plan by accelerating our pace of progress. They also make clear we are serious about Lincoln as a world-class luxury brand and that product excellence and innovation are what will deliver growth and define our entire company going forward," said Fields in the company's announcement.
If you've noticed that there have been more recalls than usual this year, you may be on to something. According to a report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the US market is on pace to break a record for recalls. In 2013, 22 million cars were recalled. We're only a third of the way through 2014, though, and we've already halved that figure, with 11 million units recalled. That's wild.
Considering the past few months, it shouldn't be a surprise that General Motors is leading the charge, with six million of the 11 million units recalled coming from one of the General's four brands. Between truck recalls, CUV recalls and the ignition switch recall, 2014 hasn't been a great year for GM.
Other recall leaders include Nissan (one million Sentra and Altima sedans), Honda (900,000 Odyssey minivans), Toyota (over one million units in a few recalls), Volkswagen (150,000 Passat sedans), Chrysler (644,000 Dodge Durango and Jeep Grand Cherokee SUVs) and most recently, Ford (434,000 units, the bulk of which were early Ford Escape CUVs). So while it's been a bad year for GM so far, its competitors aren't doing too well, either.
Domestic manufacturers enjoyed a good year for heavy-duty pickup sales in 2012. PickupTrucks.com has taken a close look at exactly how those sales broke down between each manufacturer and between three-quarter and one-ton pickups. Ford sold some 67,786 F-250 Super Duty models last year with the Chevrolet Silverado 2500 HD falling just behind at 56,359 units. The Ram 2500 HD came in third at 41,918, while the GMC Sierra 2500 HD earned itself fourth place with 27,616 deliveries. While Ford held onto the top spot in the one-ton market, Ram easily nailed down second place by selling more 3500 HD models last year than General Motors sold Silverado 3500 HD and Sierra 3500 HD trucks combined.
So, did GM manage to sell more trucks than Ford with its two brands? Very nearly. Ford sold a total of 119,338 heavy-duty pickups to GM's 111,555. Ram, meanwhile, moved a distant 77,583. But perhaps more interesting is the diesel take rate in this segment. PickupTrucks.com says 80 percent of all domestic one-ton trucks roll from the dealer lot with a turbo-diesel under the hood. Head over to the site for a closer look at the breakdown.