Friday, May 8, 2009

Ford Fuels Economy

With Ford’s creation of the assembly line in the early 20th century came several advances not only for the company, but for society and the U.S. economy as well. 


In October of 1925, Ford Motor Company’s manufactured output reached an all-time company high at 8,150 new cars produced in a single day – less than 60 days after they discontinued their former body style of their passenger cars, with the improved style in production at all of their assembly plants nationwide. 


An article published in The New York Times on October 25, 1925 titled, “8,165 FORD OUTPUT IN DAY SETS RECORD; 8,500 IS PREDICTED” addressed the company’s accomplishment when they published the released statement from Ford Motor Co:


“The former type of passenger cars went out of production in August, during which month 4,616 passenger cars were produced…

…Output of the improved cars increased rapidly and for the week ending September 19, the production total showed 22,376 cars and trucks…

…Since that time, output has been growing steadily.  During the last few weeks, the company has been shipping through its branches to dealers more than 7,000 cars and trucks a day, the shipments increasing to the record reached Friday, October 16, when 8,165 cars and trucks were produced.”


This accomplishment was short-lived for the Company as they already had bigger goals in mind:


“This output will be increased to 8,500 a day by the end of the month. Production for October will run close to 200,000, a new high record.  These figures assure the public that cars will be forthcoming in such large quantities from now on that deliveries can be made to customers without any great delay.”


Several ‘perks’ can be generated from the results of this feat.  Not only is one of the largest American companies increasing their product supply and fulfilling the demand of the consumers at a more desirable rate, which, in turn, produces much larger revenue for the Company.  But with a higher demand and the need for larger quantities of its product, Ford Motor Company expansions and new jobs become available to hundreds of American citizens.


“Aside from the engineering work, the task of producing the improved cars involved, in part, the preparation of tools for 8,291 new operations necessitating more than 3,000,000 hours of work by expert toolmakers, complete changes of whole departments, the installation of 1,074 new machines in the Highland Park and River Rouge plants and in other manufacturing units, the designing and making of 903 new and different small tools totaling 75,800 pieces and the educating of thousands of men in making new automobile parts.  The increase in production, together with constantly expanding activities, has brought employment in the Ford organization in the United States to a new high figure.  At present, the number of those employed exceeds 173,000.”


Ford has been a strong and reliable automobile manufacturing company for several years, as proven today with their grounded standings in today’s economy and marketplace while their competitors are driving themselves in to the ground.  With their creation of the assembly line at the start of the 20th century and their impressive manufactured output records as shown in this story, Ford Motor Company has been an industry icon for over a century as evident in this article. 


However, I would have appreciated to see more statistical information on Ford’s manufacturing rates and employment rates.  The entire article was a press release statement from Ford Motor Company themselves.  There is an obvious lack of reporting and fact gathering which could have made this piece more effective.  I would have preferred to see more commentary from either a factory worker, or even a direct quote from a Ford Motor Company executive.  I don’t see a need for this story to have two sides, as it’s simply honoring an achievement, but the lack-luster effort of the writer is clear in that the entire piece, with the exception of the first two grafs, is a diret statement from the Company themselves.   

1 comment:

  1. Interesting and relevant topic to focus on, as bailouts for car companies have been popular in the news, although Ford reportedly shunned the bailouts. You present good information and figures, but I'm not sure if you covered more than one article source. Also, some of the language you used is a bit economic jargon-y for me, like when you reference figures and production, as well as supply and demand. Otherwise, you do a good job of providing background on Ford and its symbolism to American culture. Like I said, interesting topic.