Ford has given up to an additional month for its dealers to decide to participate in the electric vehicle sales program. Dealers wishing to join the electric vehicle sales program are required to invest $1.2 million.
The deadline for dealerships was actually October 31, but Ford gave it until December 2 after several dealers asked for more time to make a decision.
“We value our relationship with our dealers and have decided to provide additional time for dealers who have not yet decided or asked for more time,” says Marty Gunsberg, Ford spokesman.
Gunsberg declined to provide details on the number of dealers who have opted in to the electric vehicle sales program. The exact figure will be announced by Ford after the registration period ends.
The new deadline is more in line with the December 15 deadline that Lincoln dealers faced for a similar program that required an investment of up to $900,000.
Ford divides the standard EV dealership into two tiers with differences in the amount of investment, fast chargers and staff training. Dealers with the lowest tier require an investment of up to $500,000, will be limited to the number of EVs they can sell.
Dealers who don’t upgrade can keep their franchises but can only sell internal combustion engine and hybrid vehicles.
In addition there is a new standard that must be adhered to in which dealers are required to set a non-negotiable price for EVs. Additionally, those using a lower priced certification level will not be allowed to carry any EVs in inventory. This leaves customers having to order exactly what they want for later delivery.
Ford said about 3,000 dealers in the US are free to join the program or not. Dealers who decide to participate will be certified to sell Ford electric vehicles from January 1, 2024, through the end of 2026. Those who did not participate can now be certified for EV sales starting in 2027.
Ford’s EV sales limit has been criticized by several state dealer associations, which claim it violates state law.