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Ford blames tariffs in decision to scrap Focus crossover import

By Ed Adamczyk
Ford blames tariffs in decision to scrap Focus crossover import
The Ford Motor Co. said Friday that newly imposed tariffs will prevent it from introducing the Ford Focus active crossover model, made in China, to the U.S. market. Photo courtesy of VauxFord/Wikipedia

Aug. 31 (UPI) -- The made-in-China Ford Focus Active crossover vehicle will not be sold in the United States because of tariff issues, the Ford Motor Co. said Friday.

The vehicle, a Ford Focus with higher ground clearance and several other features, was expected to arrive in the United States from China by late 2019. Fewer than 50,000 were planned to be sold. Tariffs imposed on Chinese imports by the Trump administration, and tariffs expected on imported vehicles, would have reduced profit margins to the point that building and imparting car was not financially feasible, Ford said.

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A Ford spokesman said the company would not reconsider its decision even if tariffs were eventually lifted.

"The impact to our future sales is expected to be marginal," Kumar Galhotra, Ford president of North America, said. "Our viewpoint is that, given the tariffs, our costs would be substantially higher. Our resources could be better deployed at this stage."

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Galhotra added that importation of the Ford EcoSport crossover, from India, and the Ford Transit Connect van, from Spain, would continue. The company is involved in a global restructuring expected to cost $11 billion over the next three to five years. The Ford Focus Active will still be manufactured in China and sold in European and Chinese markets.

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Ford did not seek an exemption from the China tariffs, although rival General Motors did, on its made-in-China Buick Envision, the Detroit News reported.

The Trump administration has applied 25 percent tariffs on $50 billion in Chinese goods thus far. It is considering a plan to impose duties, ranging from 10 to 25 percent, on $200 billion in Chinese imports.

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