When Alan Mulally took charge of Ford four years ago, the Blue Oval had nearly 100 models. There are fewer than half that now, and the CEO wants to trim the number down to "less than 30, on our way to 20 to 25." His goal of simplification appears to be driven by the desire to cut costs for everyone – distributors, suppliers, dealerships, as well as Ford itself. That will not only help the brand in the present as it makes do in lean times, but can compound the rewards when markets – especially in Asia – go nuts again.

Mulally says the returns can be put into research and development, along with engineering for the remaining models. To put this in perspective, on Ford's U.S. site alone, there are 18 vehicles, not including the soon-to-die Explorer Sport Trac, which of course leaves out cars like the Falcon, Territory, Kuga and S-Max, among others. So the natural question is: Which vehicles would or should get the axe?

[Source: Bloomberg]

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