Ford ballyhoing “not taking bailout money” and “doing just fine going it alone” has got to be one of the most brilliant, and deceptive, marketing ploys of this century. First of all, losing $1.4 billion in a quarter is hardly doing fine. Ford has borrowed against every asset they own, including the blue oval logo, has no unleveraged assets, and is up to their eyeballs in debt. They are betting everything on one roll of the dice: the economy will pick up before they run out of money to pay their enormous junk bond debt.
But it is their deceptive marketing ploy that one has to admire. Ford knows that a lot of people are opposed to giving tax money to failed corporations. They know that broadcasting how they, alone, are making it on their own, with NO government money, will attract customers. After all, who would want to buy a car from a failing company that begs for tax money to stay alive? Certainly no red blooded, true blue American.
Ford hopes to capture the lion’s share of sales lost by GM and Chrysler. They know they have already lost the global auto war to better managed companies like Toyota, Nissan, VW, that build quality products and stand behind them. Their only hope, before they run out of money, is to steal customers from GM and Chrysler, since they cannot compete with Toyota and others.
So Ford never mentions the largest recall in history, the fact that they are the only corporation in American History to be charged with reckless homicide, or the hundreds of people burned alive in defective Fords. Bill Ford was strangely silent about class action lawsuits against Ford for defective products that have killed and maimed thousands. But he sure broadcasted about how Ford is “doing just fine, making it on its own, not taking any bailout money….” Brilliant. But then again, Ford has a long history of misleading people. Remember “At Ford Quality is Job One” when they were stuggling to avoid bankruptcy from the recall of millions of cars with defective transmissions? Remember “Nobody Sweats the Details Like Ford” when they were offering buyouts to try and stay alive? Oh yeh, Ford has one area of competancy: a marketing department that can mislead, misinform, and deceive people. Who knows? Maybe they will actually survive. Now THAT would be a tragedy on the American People.