Ford Middle East reports strong first half growth

Ford Middle East continues full speed ahead with GCC-wide sales growth of 31% during the first six months of 2010 over the same period last year.

SUVs and Trucks led the surge with 46% increases, while cars posted 18 percent growth in sales across the region driven by the new Ford Fusion and Taurus. The company is strongly positioned and set to end the year on an upbeat following the arrival of new models in the third quarter according to Hussein Murad, Ford’s director of Sales in the Middle East.

The Middle East results reflect Ford’s strength globally with the company posting nearly US$4.7 billion first half net income after tax, an impressive US$3.85 billion improvement over the same period last year. Earnings per share rose to US$1.13 during the first half of 2010, up by US$2.03 compared to the same period in 2009. Ford Motor Company’s second quarter income after tax was registered at US$2.6 billion, an increase of US$338 million against US$2.2 billion in the second quarter of 2009.

In the Middle East, SUVs continued to be favourites among Ford vehicles, with 97% increase in sales for Expedition, followed by Explorer at 83% and Flex at 58% while Ford F-150 led the truck sales with 486% over the same period last year. In the passenger car segment, Fusion led the growth, recording a 105 percent sales increase in first half. Additionally, the all-new Taurus, although in short supply, was up by 75%. Ford’s legendary Mustang also continued to increase in popularity, with sales growing by 16%.

“This has been an exceptional half year for Ford in the region, and we anticipate sustained growth,” said Murad. “Thanks to new products we’ve introduced – and our visible commitment industry leading quality, safety, technology and value for money across the Ford marque – our customer base is growing at an unprecedented pace, and we are gaining market share. Ford’s global success story is clearly rippling across all of our markets,” he said.

Ford has been strengthened as a result of its aggressive push for quality products, rolling out vehicles that have received numerous recognitions from consumers, and private and government bodies. Most recently, Ford was recognized for having the highest quality among all non-luxury brands in the J.D. Powers and Associates’ 2010 Initial Quality Study (published June 2010).

In the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, sales were up by 56%, thanks to hefty gains from sales of Expedition at 159%, Explorer increasing by 144%, Fusion by 91% and Taurus by 57%. Qatar follows with 22% increase year-on-year and UAE recording a rise of 15%. Kuwait enjoyed robust sales in Explorer posting an increase of 70% and a 55% increase for the all-new Taurus.

The same bright picture is seen in the US, as Ford Motor Company reported a first half sales increase of 28% versus a year ago, with June sales alone up by 15%.

“Our growth here and globally confirms the success of Ford’s transformation plan,” said Murad. “We are enjoying strong business not only because of the quality products in our line up but also due to the ongoing commitment of our dealers,” Murad added.

Ford’s product drive remains on track for 2010 with a host of new models making their way into the region including the new Mustang V6 and V8 models, and the all-new crossovers Ford Edge and Lincoln MKX.

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