Ford has announced that it will accelerate the culling of its global platforms, with only nine platforms to remain in its corporate catalogue by the end of 2013.
Originally, Ford aimed to cut its global platform count to 11 by the end of 2013. However a renewed emphasis on the company's new "One Ford" strategy will see the guillotine drop on more platforms - and sooner.
Ford's global marketing and sales chief Jim Farley said at the Automotive News World Congress that the platform cull won't result in any model lines being killed off, but would see greater platform sharing between models and thus a reduction in development, tooling and production costs.
The nine remaining platforms will account for around 85 percent of Ford's global sales, the remainder being made up of region-specific platforms like Ford Australia's RWD/AWD Falcon/Territory architecture.
At this stage it's unclear which platforms will be cut from Ford's engineering inventory. Indeed, it's also unknown which of the remaining nine global platforms will be FWD, RWD or AWD-capable, or which size of vehicle they can support.
Currently, Ford has achieved great success with the new Ranger, Fiesta and Focus - all of which are built on globally-shared platforms.
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