Ford’s plan to sell the jacked-up version of the new Focus in the US market has been scrapped, thanks to the tariffs imposed on Chinese imports by the Trump administration.
The China-built Focus Active and the Mustang were supposed to become the only cars in Ford’s US model range but the market conditions have changed drastically, forcing the company to pull the plug on the Focus completely.
“Given the negative financial impact of the new tariffs, we’ve decided not to import this vehicle from China,” said Kumar Galhotra, Ford president of North America, to Detroit News. “The significant thing that moved was the tariffs going up substantially higher. We’re choosing to deploy resources elsewhere.”
GM has already asked the U.S. government for an exemption from the tariffs for the Buick Envision but Ford didn’t seek a similar exemption for the Focus Active.
“Many models will be withdrawn from the U.S. market, and many won’t be built in the U.S. at all,” said Kristin Dziczek, vice president of the Ann Arbor-based Center for Automotive Research. “There are a whole lot of implications for the automotive industry and for consumers in terms of choice and prices.”
The new Ford Focus, which is produced in Germany and China, will be sold exclusively in Europe and China. The company expected to sell fewer than 50,000 examples of the Focus Active in the US, which means that the impact of dropping the model from its future range will be marginal.
Ford’s transition from sedans to SUVs includes axing models like the Taurus, Fusion, C-Max and Focus Sedan. The company will instead pursuit greater profit margins by staying away from entry-level vehicles, but stressed that it will replace the sedans with new, similarly-priced crossover models.