Normally not one to experience setbacks in production, Ford revealed that the effects of the pandemic have forced the company to delay the launch of its self-driving line of vehicles to 2022 from the initially-planned 2021. The announcement was also accompanied by the reveal that the iconic car manufacturer suffered staggering losses in the first quarter of the year with a loss of $2 billion, a stark contrast to the $1 billion revenue from Q4 2019.
The launch is delayed, but Ford is staying the course in the AV sector
Unsurprisingly, Ford’s statement cited economic difficulties as the primary reason for the launch delay. However, the company also said that the added year will allow them to better evaluate and cater to customers’ needs, which could give them the opportunity to better meet consumer demand in a fresh sector.
Ford appears fully committed to making an early impact in the sector, however, as the company has spent much of the past few years on various forms of AV development. It had been testing AVs for some time in Washington, DC, Miami and Austin, and appeared ready to launch a fairly encompassing line of products before the pandemic hit. Despite the financial losses due to the pandemic and the focus on AVs, the company nonetheless said that it would stick to its targeted launch of the Mustang Mach-E later this year, along with the new version of Bronco.