At the New York Auto Show Wednesday, Ford Motor's President of the Americas, Mark Fields, said "we're very pleased with our early progress" with the Way Forward plan - the company's roadmap for restoring its North American auto business to profitability by 2008.

Saying that restructuring Ford's end-to-end operations is like "rewiring the house with the electricity on," Fields pointed out that a careful and methodical approach, rather than short cuts or excessive cost-cutting, was the only way to achieve a lasting turnaround.

In his announcement, Fields paid particular attention to Ford's market share, the future of its truck line, and performance vehicles. On the market share front, Fields tried to cast the first quarter's loss of market share as something of a positive development, saying that at least the rate of decline is slowing. With respect to trucks, Fields said Ford is committed to maintaining its truck leadership, promising that the company will sell more than 900,000 F-Series this year. Fields closed by reaffirming his belief that performance vehicles will strengthen the Ford brand, saying that Ford is planning a "three-tiered approach to performance," starting with "personalized performance" and moving through SVT models like the Shelby GT500 to the final tier of Ford Racing and Ford Racing Performance Parts.

[Source: Ford]

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