Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) provides two types of vehicle sales data in the annual and quarterly statements.
The vehicle sales data are:
(1) Wholesale vehicle sales, and
(2) Retail vehicle sales.
The difference between the two is explained in the following paragraphs.
Wholesale Vehicle Sales
Wholesale vehicle sales are basically vehicles sold to dealerships and the majority of such sales is correlated with the company’s recognized revenue in the income statements.
In short, wholesales are sales to dealers and are recognized as revenue in the financial statements.
Retail Vehicle Sales
Retail vehicle sales represents primarily sales by dealerships to end customers and are based on estimated vehicle registrations which include medium and heavy trucks.
For such sales, Ford does not recognize the revenue generated from the sales of dealerships to end customers and in most parts, the retail sales data merely represents the strength of Ford’s brands.
What’s Being Covered Here
With the above said, this article covers only Ford’s retail vehicle sales.
Other than retail sales, we are also tracking Ford’s market share and the breakdown of Ford’s sales by region as well as by country.
Besides, this article also briefly talks about Ford’s year-over-year growth rates in global vehicle sales and vehicle sales by types in the U.S.
For readers who are interested in Ford’s vehicle wholesale, please visit this page: Ford’s vehicle deliveries.
Keep in mind that vehicle sales and retail sales are used interchangeably in this article and they are meant the same.
Let’s dive in!
Ford’s Vehicle Sales by Region (Quarterly)
The chart above shows Ford’s quarterly vehicle sales by region or by country in the U.S., China and Europe for the past 5 years between fiscal 2016 and 2021.
The U.S., China and Euro20 are Ford’s 3 largest markets in the world and their combined sales made up more than 80% of Ford’s total retail sales in fiscal 2021.
In the chart above, the U.S. has been Ford’s largest market, contributing, on average, half a million of vehicle sales per quarter to the company over the past 5 years.
In 4Q 2021, Ford’s U.S. vehicle sales stood at 508K units, representing a year-over-year decline of 6%.
Europe is Ford’s 2nd largest market after the U.S., at roughly 300k vehicle sales per quarter.
However, that number plummeted to only 169k vehicles in Q2 2020, the lowest since 2016.
Fortunately, Ford’s retail sales in Europe recovered significantly by 4Q 2021, with sales totaling 182k vehicles.
China is Ford’s 3rd largest market in terms of retail sales.
In fiscal 2021, Ford’s vehicle sales in China have slightly increased, hitting 167k vehicles in the 4th quarter.
Despite the recovery in China, Ford’s sales numbers in a post-pandemic world were still way below the pre-COVID levels.
Moreover, China used to be Ford’s 2nd largest retail market but Europe has surpassed China as Ford’s 2nd largest market since 2018.
Ford’s Vehicle Sales by Region (TTM)
The TTM plot above smoothes out the bumps seen in the quarterly plot and can clearly display the trend of Ford’s vehicle sales.
As seen in the chart above, Ford’s vehicle sales in all regions, including the U.S., Europe and China, have been on a long-term decline.
As of 4Q 2021, Ford’s vehicle sales in the U.S. reached only 1.9 million units, the lowest since fiscal 2016.
Similarly, Ford’s vehicle sales in Europe and China have also come in at record lows as of 2021, notably at 879k and 624k units, respectively, as of the 4th quarter.
Ford’s Market Share by Region (Quarterly)
The chart above shows Ford’s quarterly market share by region or by country in North America, China and Europe for the period between fiscal 2016 and 2021.
The Euro20 consists of Ford’s 20 European traditional markets. These 20 European countries alone made up more than 90% of Ford’s total European retail volumes in 2021.
The North American market consists of the U.S., Mexico and Canada, with the U.S. being the largest contributor at roughly 86% of Ford’s total retail volume in 2021.
That said, Ford Motor’s market share in the North American region averaged about 13% for the last 6 years.
In fiscal 4Q 2021, Ford’s North America market share increased to 14.3%, the highest level since fiscal 2020.
On the flipped side, Ford’s market share in Europe has been on a decline and came in at only 5.9% in fiscal 4Q 2021, a record low in the last 6 years.
Ford’s market share in China has remained steady at 2.4% in 2021 Q4 but was far below the historical highs prior to the pandemic.
Among the 3 regions, Ford’s retail market share was the worst in China, having the figure cut in more than half since 2016.
On the other hand, Ford’s retail share in North America and Europe has remained relatively stable.
Ford’s Vehicle Sales In The U.S. YoY Growth Rates
Ford reported the 1st year-on-year growth in vehicle sales in the U.S. in the 1st half of 2021.
The most obvious recovery was seen in 2Q 2021 at a 9% year-over-year growth rate.
However, in the second half of 2021, Ford’s vehicle sales in the U.S. dived significantly and were seen declining by 6.4% in the 4th quarter on a year-over-year basis.
Ford’s Vehicle Sales In Europe YoY Growth Rates
Ford’s vehicle sales in Euro20 also experienced a significant improvement in 2021, with sales growing 44% year over year in 2Q 2021.
However, Ford’s retail segment was down dramatically in the second half of fiscal 2021.
In fiscal 4Q 2021, Ford’s retail sales declined by more than 30% year-on-year.
Ford’s Vehicle Sales In China YoY Growth Rates
Surprisingly, Ford’s total vehicle sales in China increased year over year in 3 consecutive quarters in 2020, driven mainly by strong demand for Ford’s SUVs and luxury vehicles following the lifting of COVID-19 pandemic restrictions.
However, Ford reported significantly lower YoY growth rates in China in fiscal 2021.
In the 4th quarter of 2021, Ford’s retail sales in China declined 12.6%, driven possibly by a host of issues, including a post-pandemic disruption and lower demand as a result of surging COVID cases.
Ford’s Vehicle Sales By Category In The U.S. (Quarterly)
The chart above shows Ford’s total vehicle or retail sales by category in the U.S. between fiscal 2016 and 2021.
Ford’s U.S. vehicle sales are broken down by category into trucks, cars and SUVs as shown in the chart above.
According to the chart, Ford’s truck sales in the U.S. have held up firmly for the past 4 years and the same trend is observed for SUVs sales.
In the 4th quarter of 2021, Ford’s truck sales in the U.S. were down 7% year-on-year to 268,000 units.
However, Ford’s SUV sales held up firmly in 4Q 2021 at 228,000 units, representing a 5% increase on a year-on-year basis.
Ford reported in its financial statement that it’s more profitable to sell larger vehicles such as SUVs and trucks.
The following quote was extracted from one of Ford’s annual statements regarding the profitability of larger vehicle sales.
Ford’s trucks especially the F-Series pickups have been popular with consumers in the U.S.
While Ford’s truck and SUV sales were favorable in 2021, the car or sedan segment in the U.S. suffered the most, with total car sales plunging by a stunning 56% in the 1st half of 2021 and more than 70% in the 2nd half of 2021.
In the car segment, Ford’s Fiesta and Fusion were completely wiped out in fiscal 2021.
The popular Ford Mustang also took a beating when only 52,000 deliveries were reported in 2021, down 14% from a year ago.
Ford’s Vehicle Sales By Category In The U.S. (TTM)
From a TTM perspective, Ford’s SUV has made a significant comeback in fiscal 2021, with sales even exceeding that of the pre-COVID period.
As of 4Q 2021, Ford delivered 827,000 SUVs on a TTM basis, up 10% from a year ago.
On the other hand, Ford’s truck sales were down 8% from a year ago to 1 million units in Q4 2021.
As for sedan or car sales, Ford’s vehicle retail volume has been on a dramatic decline, slipping to only 68,000 units as of 2021 4Q, a record low in the last 6 years.
Ford’s Global Vehicle Sales by Country
The chart above shows Ford’s global retail or vehicle sales by country on a yearly basis for the period between fiscal 2015 and 2021.
The countries shown in the chart are the United States, United Kingdom, Brazil, Germany, Canada and China.
Cumulatively, these countries made up more than 70% of Ford’s global retail volumes in 2021.
As seen in the chart, the United States has been Ford’s largest retail market from 2015 to 2021, contributing roughly 2 million vehicle sales to the company annually.
Despite topping the chart for the past 6 years, Ford’s U.S. vehicle sales were seen declining year over year and reached the lowest at oly 1.9 million units in 2021.
China claimed the 2nd spot at an average sales figure of 900k per year.
Ford used to sell more than 1 million vehicles in China, but that figure has dropped to only 600k as of 2021.
Ford may have one of the worst sales results in 2021, with nearly all countries in the chart reporting negative growth rates compared to 2020.
A trend worth talking about is that Ford used to deliver a much higher vehicle volume in Canada, Brazil, the United Kingdom and Germany prior to 2020.
However, Ford’s retail volume in these countries plummeted dramatically in 2020 and the low volume continued into 2021.
For example, Ford’s retail volume in Brazil basically vanished as of fiscal 2021.
Similarly, Ford’s retail sales in the UK have been cut in half as of fiscal 2021 compared to pre-COVID levels.
Ford’s Global Market Share by Country
The chart above shows Ford’s global market share by country for the period from fiscal 2015 to 2021.
While the U.S. has been Ford’s biggest market, the company’s retail market share in the U.S. has declined slightly between 2015 and 2021, dropping to its lowest at 12.4% in 2021 from its high of 14.7% back in 2015.
Ford also experienced a similar market share decline in the United Kingdom, with market share dropping from 14.3% in 2015 to 11.8% as of 2021.
Similarly, Ford’s market share in Brazil declined the most, dropping from 10.4% in 2015 to only 1.7% as of 2021.
Ford’s retail market share in China increased modestly from 2.2% in 2019 to 2.4% in 2021.
However, between 2015 and 2021, Ford has seen its market share in China tumbling more than half from 4.7% in 2015 to only 2.4% in 2021.
The only countries that hold up firmly in terms of market share were Canada and Germany.
Between 2015 and 2021, Ford has maintained its market share in Canada at more than 14%.
As of 2021, Ford’s market share in Canada has maintained at 14.3%, making it the only country that sees its market share being held up firmly.
In summary, 2021 has been a tumultuous year for Ford. The company saw its vehicle sales tumbling in 3 of its largest markets, namely the U.S., China and Europe.
While vehicle sales have plummeted in most cases, Ford’s retail sales in China have held up in fiscal 2021 compared to the prior year, driven primarily by strong demand for the company’s trucks, SUVs and other luxury vehicles.
For full-year 2021, Ford’s total vehicle sales have slightly recovered compared to 2020 in most regions.
In the U.S., Ford’s trucks and SUVs retail volumes were having a modest gain but sedan or car sales were devastating.
Therefore, Ford’s recovery in fiscal 2021 seems to have hit a roadblock, with vehicle sales improving only slightly from the prior year.
In short, Ford still has much work to do.
References and Credits
1. Vehicle sales and market share data were obtained and referenced from quarterly and annual statements which are available in Ford’s Financials and Filings.
2. Growth rates and TTM figures are calculated by the author. Rounding errors may exist.
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