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Ford Motor Company is making changes at the top of its organization, including an expanding roll for up-and-coming marketing chief Jim Farley. A new Detroit Free Press report indicates that the former Toyota marketing whiz will be elevated to the roll of global marketing chief effective August 1. That's significant in part because this will be the first time The Blue Oval has ever had a head of global marketing – in the past the job was handled on a regional basis.

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When Alan Mulally arrived at Ford Motor Company three years ago, the Blue Oval was in bad shape. New product wasn't exactly pouring in and the company's cash hoard was steadily shrinking. And word on the street is that the corporate culture at Ford was in as much trouble as the product lineup, making change difficult. Now in 2009, it appears Mulally has done the near impossible, turning around Ford's product lineup while supposedly positively altering FoMoCo's corporate culture.

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Over the next two years, Ford will have a whole lineup of new smaller cars coming the US market including the Fiesta and global Focus. At a Ford media event today, marketing VP Jim Farley talked to reporters about the plans for those cars. Traditionally, carmakers have had a hard time making money on small cars in the US because customers have expected prices in proportion to size. That perception is now changing as customers are moving down from trucks and SUVs to cars, particularly smaller car

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Click above for more high-res pics of the Ford Flex

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Perhaps 'fired' is the wrong word, as that does imply that these white collar workers did something wrong. The only thing some 12% of Ford's salaried workforce did wrong is get hired by a company that dug itself into a hole relying on strong truck and SUV sales during the 1990s. Now, with consumers avoiding gas-hungry vehicles, the restructuring effort faltering amidst high gas prices, and news that the company has abandoned its goal of returning to profitability in 2009... cutting more salaried

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After spending a few days with Ford's main-marketing-man Jim Farley and his team, we can truly say that the excitement surrounding the company's new Drive One marketing strategy is palpable. They believe that the story they have to tell is rather compelling; the real struggle will be convincing car-buyers that their vehicles are every bit as good as their competition from Japan -- as recent studies indicate. To show people what's going on behind the scenes, Farley and his posse brought Ford's be

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Click above for a high-res gallery of the Ford Flex.

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As the days go on, the much rumored F-150 Raptor is becoming less wild speculation and more solid reality. Dealers were given a glimpse of the forth-coming truck at the Ford Dealer Show in Las Vegas, and they haven't shied away from spilling the beans regarding what they saw. Ford marketing boss Jim Farley unveiled the Ford-embossed front grille of the baja F-150, then showed video of a juiced-up off-road mule tearing it up in the desert.

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Joe Laymon isn't on the short list of successors for Ford CEO Alan Mulally, and it's unlikely you've ever heard of him, but if you want to get to the top at the Blue Oval, this is the guy you stop by Starbucks for on the way to work. Laymon is in charge of keeping a list of internal candidates ready in the event Mulally retires (or quits, is fired or for some other reason exits his position), which could come as soon as 2011 when he turns 65.

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Click the Fiesta for a high-res gallery

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Bringing his experience heading Lexus with him when he defected to Ford, Jim Farley's got his eye on some premium-Toyota style brand growth. Ford's past party line has been that the Lincoln nameplate is strictly for North American consumption, but Farley's been conferring with other Forders like Peter Horbury about taking Lincoln worldwide. Lexus is enjoying rapid growth in markets like Russia and Saudi Arabia, so it's not a new concept for Farley, and Horbury has previous global-brand experienc

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Jim Farley will climb aboard at Ford in mid-November, after defecting from his position as Group Vice President and General Manager of Lexus. His role at Ford will be dual-fold. Farley will be heading up the effort to entice people to buy Ford vehicles as Group Vice President of Marketing and Communications. In addition to his MarCom responsibilities, Farley will also be taking on the U.S. marketing, sales, and service for Ford, Lincoln and Mercury, a job most recently filled by the retired Cisc

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Sure, the loss of Jim Press to Chrysler was probably a bigger blow, but news today that one of Toyota's marketing gurus, Jim Farley, has been hired awar by Alan Mulally to be Ford's group vice president of marketing and communication implies that the Japanese automaker's North American operation is experiencing a bit of a brain drain. Farley will start at Ford in mid-November and report directly to Mulally. His resume includes overseeing the launch of Scion, general manager of Lexus and group VP

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