Ford’s PAG to report a profit in 2007
( autoinsiderne ) - Ford expects its luxury Premier Automotive Group to report a profit in 2007, according to Lewis Booth, the head of Ford's European operations. The Premier Automotive Group is made up of the Volvo, Jaguar, Land Rover, and Aston Martin brands. Last year, Ford announced that it is looking to sell Aston Martin. Current reports say the sale is imminent, and could be announced as soon as this week.
Jaguar, in particular, has been a drag on the PAG's profits, and there have been many calls for Ford to cut lose the troubled brand. Ford CEO Alan Mulally has said there are not plans to sell Jaguar at this time, but he has not rule out reversing that decision. It appears that Ford will give Jaguar one more chance behind a radical new design language that debuted on the C-XF Concept (shown).
Ford's PAG lost $327 million in 2006 and $1.15 billion over the last three years. Over the last several years, Volvo has been the PAG's savior, with earnings as high as $1.2 billion annually. However, Volvo's stale lineup hurt its 2006 sales, and thus the brand's profitability. But with the all-new S80, V70, XC70 and the new C30, Volvo is expected to return to its high earnings. Ultimately, the health and overall profitability of the PAG in 2007 relies mostly on success at Volvo.