How Is Ford Focusing on Gaining Ground in China?

If Ford Motors (NYSE:F) is looking for someone to blame for the Dearborn-based automaker’s recent surge of sales in China, the world’s largest auto market, it should focus on the Focus.

Ford Focus

The Focus is Ford’s top-selling car in China, partly facilitated by the automaker’s decision to build the new Focus in China. Combine the sales of the new Focus with the vehicle’s older generation, and you have an impressive figure of 27,345 sales in May, reflecting a 17 percent increase. In May 2012, the Focus sold 23,140 units.

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As Ford continues to gain ground in the lucrative auto market and offer competition to other frontrunners maintaining traction like Nissan and Toyota Motors (NYSE:TM), the automaker is focusing much of its efforts on the SUV, especially as these vehicles’ popularity continues to grow in China. Its plans to become an SUV leader are slowly coming to fruition, as the new Ford Ecosport sold 6,231 units in only its second month in the market, while sales of the new Ford Kugo totaled 7,892.

The automaker’s passenger vehicles also posted record figures in China, with 332,467 deliveries during the first five months of the year, reflecting a 48 percent increase from the same period in May 2012.

Ford EcoSport

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Overall, Ford’s auto sales in China rose 45 percent in May with the sale of 70,540 units. This is compared to Nissan, whose sales with its China joint venture totaled 103,000 and Toyota who posted sales of 79,000 units. And Ford is ready to spend millions to keep up with these competitors, along with strong players like General Motors (NYSE:GM) and Volkswagen. While fortifying its dealer network, it also plans to introduce its Lincoln brand there later this year.

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