Not everyone agrees.
The New York dealership suing Ford argues that program provisions barring unauthorized dealers from selling EVs are illegal.
“All dealers under current franchise agreements have the right to include modern EVs in all Ford vehicles manufactured under that nameplate,” said Rich Sox, one of the attorneys representing dealers. “They have the right to equitably allocate these vehicles based on things like market size and sales history,” he said in an interview. It’s about not falling into one of the three categories that we’ve deliberately created.”
Ford claims it plans to continue investing in gasoline vehicles under the Ford Blue business unit to help dealers who don’t sell EVs continue to be successful.
“Dealers who lose their ability to sell and service EVs, the future of the auto industry, will quickly lose profits and eventually go out of business,” the New York dealer wrote in the lawsuit.
An Illinois protest, and a complaint filed with the Arkansas Automobile Commission in October, raise similar points.
The Illinois dealer said, “Ford will not sell any new potential revenues to which the dealer has existing contractual and statutory rights unless the dealer agrees to the extreme and unreasonable anti-franchise terms that Ford is claiming.” “Certainly, there is nothing ‘voluntary’ in Ford’s illegal take-it-or-leave-it program.”
Despite the opposition, Farley said last week that he doesn’t regret rolling out the program.
“There’s always a better way,” he said. “But I don’t think we made a big mistake.”
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