Build To Order At Your Ford Dealer

Build To Order At Your Ford Dealer

Your local Ford dealer might start to look a bit different as Ford adjusts to a new business model triggered by the chip shortage and other factors. Instead of packing the dealer lot with new cars, Ford is instead moving toward a custom order process. To help boost online sales, Ford has already introduced Ford Express Buy and other digital options for new and used cars.

Ford Moves To  Custom Order Business Model

Ordering your vehicle with the exact color, trim, accessories, and everything else you want has long been how many people in Europe buy cars. However, the United States has generally kept the model where you go to your local dealer and pick from the cars on the lot, and then drive it home after you purchase.

The pandemic changed that process as many Americans decided to mostly shop online and some even rejected the test-drive option. Ford has noticed the shift and now wants to work with future buyers to embrace a more digital car buying process. Instead of going to your local Ford dealer to pick out and test-drive a car, you’ll simply order up exactly what you want and then pick it up when it’s ready.

Short Inventory Supply Causes Order Model

According to Ford spokespeople, the automaker is very committed to the pre-order process and keeping inventory on Ford dealer lots down to 50 or 60-day supplies. Ford believes that the traditional incentive-based buying process is now mostly a waste of money.

Aside from the pandemic, the chip shortages have also affected the car-buying process. The chip shortage has been affecting Ford dealers across the country since early last year. The shortage has forced buyers to wait for the car they want as low dealer inventory means there’s not much to choose from right on the lot.

Last year, Ford introduced Ford Express Buy to give customers the chance to buy directly online. However, the only vehicle available was the Mustang Mach-E, but Ford does expect this system to include other vehicles eventually.

An Exciting Future With a Dash of the Past

Ford expects that soon buyers will be able to use the Ford Express Buy system to completely customize their preferred vehicle online, place it in the cart, then use Ford Credit to get approved for a loan. You can complete the whole process very quickly, and when the car is ready, your local Ford dealer will have it delivered to your house.

In fact, the Big Three automakers used to sell vehicles this way in the past. Customers could pre-order their new vehicle with any option available from the automaker, sometimes down to the final drive ratio. Dealer lots didn’t take up so much space with huge inventories of new cars. Many customers seem to be in favor of this transition as it is more streamlined and fitting to the modern age.

Ford probably won’t be the only automaker going in this direction in the future. It’s clear that a post-pandemic consumer base wants more online buying options, not less.


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