Ford Motor Co.’s newly appointed COO Jim Farley (left) and Ford President and CEO Jim Hackett show off the 2020 Explorer sport utility vehicle at a 2019 event in Detroit.

Ford Motor Co. shuffled its top executive ranks, placing Jim Farley as the clear successor to CEO Jim Hackett as his most visible competitor for the top spot, Joe Hinrichs, has retired.

Hinrichs, 54, had been with Ford for 19 years. An engineer by education, he had been a plant manager, manufacturing chief, and president of the Americas division. Farley, 57, came to Ford in 2007 after launching the now-defunct Scion brand for Toyota. A marketing and sales guru, he comes from the less technical side of the auto industry.

Through the past three CEOs at Ford (Hackett, Mark Fields, and Alan Mulally), Hinrichs and Farley had been two top manufacturing and marketing executives, and industry watchers have long debated which of the two would become the company’s next leader.

Farley is now Ford’s chief operating officer (COO) and reports directly to Hackett. In that role, he will oversee product development, purchasing, new business model developments, manufacturing, labor affairs, marketing, sales, quality, and new model launches.

“Jim’s passion for great vehicles and his intense drive for results are well known. He also has developed into a transformational leader with the imagination and foresight to help lead Ford into the future,” Hackett says.

Volvo’s Mack Trucks enters medium-duty market

Mack Trucks will begin production of Mack MD series medium-duty trucks in July 2020. Mack also announced a $13 million investment to establish its Roanoke Valley Operations (RVO), a new manufacturing facility in Roanoke Valley, Virginia, for Mack MD series production. The project creates 250 new jobs.

“Mack Trucks is very proud to make this investment and to now offer a full lineup of Class 6 to Class 8 commercial vehicles, serving virtually every segment of the market,” says Mack Trucks President Martin Weissburg. “With this investment, Mack is well-positioned for future success.”

The Mack MD6, a Class 6 model, has a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of 25,995 lb, and the MD7, a Class 7 model, has a GVWR of 33,000 lb. The products will meet the needs of trucking applications requiring dry van/refrigerated, stake/flatbed, dump, and tank truck vocations.

“Already providing our customers a full product lineup of Class 8 vehicles, the Mack MD Series expands even further the solutions available to our customers,” says Jonathan Randall, Mack Trucks senior vice president of North American sales and marketing.

BorgWarner buying Delphi for $3.3 billion

One of the largest suppliers of turbochargers is buying General Motors’ (GM’s) former parts division Delphi for $3.3 billion in a bid to become a major supplier of powertrains for hybrids and electric vehicles (EVs).

BorgWarner has several electric system technologies, mainly centered around hybrids or electrified power boosting such as electric turbochargers. Delphi will provide more technologies and expertise in power conversion for fully electric cars, electronic controls, and automotive integrated circuits.

“Combining with Delphi Technologies is consistent with BorgWarner’s evolution toward the propulsion market of the future and would enable BorgWarner to maintain flexibility across combustion, hybrid, and electric propulsion,” company officials said in announcing the purchase.

Following the purchase, which the companies expect to close by the end of 2020, BorgWarner’s current shareholders will own about 84% of the merged company with 16% going to Delphi.

In addition to electric drive, both companies offer several gasoline and diesel technologies. BorgWarner is a major supplier of transmission systems, starter motors, variable valvetrain systems, and other powertrain components. Delphi offers high-pressure gasoline direct-injection fuel systems, ignition systems, high-accuracy fuel gages, and test equipment.

In 2019, the companies had a combined $14.5 billion in sales.

“This exciting transaction represents the next step in BorgWarner’s balanced propulsion strategy, strengthening our position in electrified propulsion as well as our combustion, commercial vehicle, and aftermarket businesses,” says Frédéric Lissalde, president and CEO of BorgWarner who will continue to hold that position following the merger.

BorgWarner hopes to cut $125 million in costs by 2023, primarily in administrative and procurement savings.;