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Commentary & Voices

Cox Automotive Commentary: Ford Leadership Change


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Cox Automotive Executive Analyst Michelle Krebs on Jim Farley succeeding Jim Hackett as Ford Motor Co. CEO, effective Oct. 1, 2020: “How appropriate that Jim Farley was elevated to CEO of Ford Motor Co. 10 years, almost to the day, that he joined the automaker from Toyota. His first, or one of his first public appearances, as a Ford executive took place at the historic Ford Rouge plant. Farley, emotionally almost tearfully, talked about how his grandfather, Emmett Tracy, worked for Ford, and joining Ford was like coming home. Today, as he accepted the top job, he again referred to his grandfather. For Farley, the story, like the history and emotion behind the Ford Bronco, the F-150 and the Mustang, is what makes vehicle products something more than a commodity.

The road ahead for Farley and Ford will be anything but easy as the industry struggles to adopt new technologies, new global regulations and high customer expectations. In times of transformation, leaders that dream big and lead with emotions often rise to the top. And that certainly seems to be the case right now with Jim Farley.”

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