Jacques Nasser, president of Ford Automotive Operations, was interviewed last month in Dearborn, Michigan, by Peter Brown, Edward Lapham and Mary Connelly of Automotive News Europe.
Will we see a lot more consolidation among carmakers?
Yes. The cost of doing business is going to continue to escalate. I am talking about the resources and investment needed to be able to remain competitive, to be able to invest in research and engineering, the environment, safety, the technology that will go into the products, and the broad range of products that will be required.
There will continue to be a push for fewer and fewer unique and separate boardrooms. I think that will result in companies that will need volumes approaching 10 million vehicles a year. I think we will get to a point where even someone selling a million vehicles a year will be a niche player.
What will the Euro mean for European operations?
Overall, it's positive. We've effectively had a common market but with very different tax rates and very different currency rates.
Over time, it is going to be positive for economic growth, for transparency of prices and it will provide efficiencies in the way we run our business.
It is said that the creation of Visteon as a market-oriented supplier has saved Ford hundreds of millions of dollars.
Yes. It's focus. It's attitude. It's having a sense of fending for themselves and a spirit of running a business.
Does Ford want to buy more of Kia?
We're in discussions. We are not interested in significantly more debt. We are conservative in our balance sheet, and that is the way we like it to be. We're not in a mood for changing cash into liabilities at this point. But we're there and in discussion.