San Francisco, Oct 27

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utomaker Ford has applied brakes on $12 billion in planned investments on electric cars, that included a battery factory in the site of Kentucky in the US, saying consumers are not willing to pay a premium for an EV over a gas or hybrid vehicle.

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During the company’s third-quarter earnings call, CEO Jim Farley and CFO John Lawler acknowledged that while EV sales have grown, people are not yet ready to pay extra for EVs.

Ford’s EV business continues to lose money, around $1.3 billion in the September quarter in adjusted earnings.

The automaker has lost $3.1 billion on its EV spending so far this year, and is going to lose a total of $4 billion for the year.

“All told, we have pushed about $12 billion of EV spend, which includes capex, direct investment and expense,” Lawler said late on Thursday.

“The ultimate success of our EV transition will be driven by our Gen 2 and Gen 3 products, which will be cost-optimized and guided by the learnings of our first-generation vehicles that are currently in the market,” he added.

A great product is not enough in the EV business anymore and “we have to be totally competitive on cost”.

“Tesla actually gave us a huge gift with a laser-focus on cost and scaling the Model Y. They set the standard, and we are now making real progress on our second- and third-cycle EVs that are in the midst of being developed today as we get closer to the introduction,” said the Ford CEO.

Ford reported a net income in the third quarter of $1.2 billion, compared to the $827 million loss in the prior year quarter.

Not just Ford, General Motors is also pushing back production of new electric trucks and SUVs, according to reports.

Ford delays $12 bn in EV spend as consumers not willing to pay premium

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