Back in 2009, at the absolute lowest point in the history of the American automobile industry, Chrysler and General Motors declared bankruptcy. The United States government set up a cabinet-level group called The Presidential Task Force On The Auto Industry was formed to allow the government to handle the courtroom proceedings that would end up allowing the two automotive giants the opportunity to get back on their feet.

Though Ford did not declare bankruptcy or accept any governmental oversight, the Blue Oval did, in a show of solidarity, stand beside its Detroit-born brothers in Senate hearings and offered verbal support to both GM and Chrysler. It seems that goodwill only went so far, however and now that its two American siblings are churning out healthier balance sheets, the gloves are officially off.

As you can see in the video after the jump, Ford has created a new television commercial as part of its "Drive One: Press Conference" series that casts a somewhat critical eye on the U.S. automotive bailout of 2009. (It's at this point we'd be remiss if we didn't also mention that in the midst of the auto crisis, the Blue Oval accepted billions in very low-interest technology loans from the U.S. government, as did other automakers).

Despite the fact that Chris, the star of the advert, is not a Ford employee but a real Ford truck owner, and that the ad was apparently filmed without a script, Ford's airing of the commercial more than suggests it approves of the message therein. In his own words, here's what Chris had to say when asked if buying American was important to him:

I wasn't going to buy another car that was bailed out by our government. I was going to buy from a manufacturer that's standing on their own: win, lose, or draw. That's what America is about is taking the chance to succeed and understanding when you fail that you gotta' pick yourself up and go back to work. Ford is that company for me.

Now that you've watched the video after the break, the question is, how effective is this ad? Do you like it, hate it or are you indifferent? Is it a good message or is it a cheap shot at GM and Chrysler? Feel free to sound off in the comments, but first, take a moment to add your voice to our informal poll.






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  • 223 Comments
      _I_I_II_I_I_
      • 3 Years Ago
      Fair, but not effective. One of the best things about Ford passing on the bailout was that everyone ELSE was lauding Ford for taking that course. Ford looked better for being quiet about it.
      joejoe509
      • 3 Years Ago
      Effective? Maybe. Cheap shot? I don't think so. Ford should be proud of what they've accomplished the last few years. But they definitely shouldn't milk that ad too much. You don't want to appear too boastful.
      Geoffrey Swenson
      • 3 Years Ago
      Ford didn't need a bailout, but if the other companies hadn't been bailed out, Ford wouldn't be looking so good itself, because Ford uses many of the same suppliers that would have also gone broke. The bailout for GM and Chrysler wasn't exactly fun for the owners of either company. The owners of Chrysler lost everything, and GM stock wasn't worth much after the bailout. Both companies were required to reorganize in painful ways so that they could make money in the future.
      ryan
      • 3 Years Ago
      Real paid actors.
      mitchw
      • 3 Years Ago
      If people are riled up about how GM and Chrysler took govt money, they might take a look at their own personal survival. In 2008 the govt stepped in to protect money market accounts, guaranteeing what was in accounts even thought those accounts had no agreed backup. And when the Fed bought bonds in order to keep interest rates low, one intention was to keep the mortgages of people with ARMs from defaulting. Whether you directly or indirectly benefited from the govt stepping in, the ignorance and hypocrisy of railing against the bailouts of GM and Chrysler is heady stuff.
      chan625
      • 3 Years Ago
      It is a bit harsh but its completely fair & not like the Nissan Advert that targeted other Japanese companies hit by earthquake, cause that was really cheap since the earthquake wasn't the result of their strategic decisions! @Neil Ford sold out brands and took a loan, which is nothing to be shameful about. Especially as GM did the same plus had govt. investing into equity, working capital AND give tax handicap. Also they have only paid back loan & working capital, and yet they gone out and said they paid back all debt to govt. Which sucked even more... Also they now have a sword hanging on their head when govt. tries to shake out the weight, which will result in equity value crashing down. So govt. must do it very very slowly indeed
      john92lx91gls
      • 3 Years Ago
      AHHHHH! I accidently voted wrong! It IS fair, wish I could have a "do-over".
      hans moleman
      • 3 Years Ago
      stupid ford.. fix your fault tranny in the focus/fiesta first before pulling this stunt.
      Travis Brady
      • 3 Years Ago
      What happened to advertisements with a great voice that listed the specs of whatever car they were trying to sell? Seriously, Ford not getting a bailout has nothing to do with the capabilities of the car/truck/suv. In no way is it a cheap shot and in no way is it fair. It is just a dumb advertisement. The ad might as well say "Ford never took a bailout but they sure did screw me when I bought this new truck." Like I said earlier, that has nothing to do with the capabilities of the vehicle. So, Ford, tell us what your vehicle DOES and not what you DID about your money.
      Rotation
      • 3 Years Ago
      This will throw an interesting monkey wrench into the UAW negotiations too. The UAW won't take kindly to implications that their brethren should have lost their jobs, whether it's true or not.
      kmanning83
      • 3 Years Ago
      Ooh, it's the rare Autoblog page-hit trifecta! US name brand loyalism, the auto bailout, AND a poll!
      johnb
      • 3 Years Ago
      Someone has to say it. I'll admit I'm kinda surprised Ford has the balls to do it, but I'm glad they did. Way to go Ford.
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