The Ford Motor Company
Ford Motor Company is an American multinational corporation and the
world's third largest automaker based on vehicle sales in 2005. Based
in Dearborn, Michigan, a suburb of Metro Detroit, the automaker was
founded by Henry Ford and incorporated in 1903. Ford now encompasses
many global brands, including Lincoln and Mercury of the US, Jaguar,
Aston Martin and Land Rover of Great Britain, and Volvo of Sweden. Ford
also owns a one-third controlling interest in Mazda...
I. Ford Motor
Ford Motor Company is an American multinational
corporation and the world's third
largest automaker based on vehicle sales in 2005.
Based in Dearborn,
a suburb of Metro Detroit,
automaker was founded by Henry Ford and
incorporated in 1903. Ford now
encompasses many global brands,
the US, Jaguar, Aston Martin and Land Rover of Great Britain, and Volvo of Sweden. Ford also owns a
controlling interest in Mazda.
Ford has also been one of the world's ten largest
corporations by revenue and in 1999 ranked as one of the
world's most profitable corporations. In recent years, it has not fared
and since 1995 has lost market share in the U.S.
years in a row. In December 2006 the company announced that it expects Toyota to overtake it as the number 2 auto-maker
in the US
Ford introduced methods for large-scale
manufacturing of cars and large-scale management of an industrial
especially elaborately engineered manufacturing sequences typified by
moving assembly lines.
Henry Ford's combination of highly
factories, highly paid workers, and low prices revolutionized
came to be known around the world as Fordism by 1914.
He is not related in any way to the 38th president of the United States, Gerald Rudolph
though they were both raised in the same state, which is Michigan.
Ford was launched from a converted wagon
factory in 1903 with $28,000 in cash from twelve investors. During its
years, the company produced just a few Alphabet Cars a day at its
factory on Mack Avenue
in Detroit, Michigan.
Groups of two or three men worked on each car from components made to
other companies. Henry Ford was 40 years old when he founded the Ford
Company, which would go on to become one of the largest and most
companies in the world, as well as being one of the few to survive the Great Depression.
The largest family-controlled
company in the world, the Ford Motor Company has been in continuous
control for over 100 years.
In 1908, the Ford Company released
the Ford Model T.
Model T's were built at the Piquette Manufacturing Plant. The company
production to the much larger Highland
Plant to keep up with the demand for the Model T. By 1913,
the company had developed all of the basic techniques of the assembly line and mass production.
introduced the world's first moving assembly line that year, which
chassis assembly time from 12½ hours in October to 2 hours, 40 minutes.
However, these innovations were hard on employees, and turnover of
very high. Turnover meant delays and extra costs of training, and use
workers. In January 1914, Ford solved
the employee turnover problem
by doubling pay to $5 a day ($103 per day in 2006 dollars), cutting
nine hours to an eight hour day for a 5 day work week, and instituting
practices that identified the best workers. Thus, it pioneered the
and the 40 hour work week in the United States, before the
government enacted it. Thus, Henry Ford became an American legend.
Productivity soared and employee turnover
plunged, and the cost per vehicle plummeted. Ford cut prices again and
and invented the system of franchised dealers who were loyal to his
Wall Street had disagreed with Ford's generous labor practices when he
paying workers enough to buy the products they made.