DETROIT - Ford Motor Co. said it has raised prices of its 2000 model cars and light trucks an average 0.2 percent, or $40, over final 1999 model prices on a comparably equipped basis.
Dealer discounts, which vary by model line, are unchanged, Ford said.
In the 2000 model year, Ford said it is making additional equipment standard on its cars and trucks to simplify manufacturing by reducing the number of possible vehicle combinations. The installation rate for nearly all the new standard equipment was at least 80 percent, said Lloyd Hansen, controller of Ford's global sales operation.
'We have a lot of vehicles with base-price increases because we are making equipment standard,' Hansen said. 'It is equipment that everyone buys, and we are building it into our base vehicles.'
The Taurus SE sedan has $600 in new standard equipment, including 16-inch aluminum wheels and a security system, he said. The base price is up $185, Hansen said.
After conducting 300 focus groups and polling 10,000 people, Ford began making option packages standard, cutting the number of build permutations so that vehicles are easier for customers to order and easier for the factory to build, Hansen said.
The program began in the 1999 model year. In the 2000 model year, buildable combinations will drop 90 percent on cars and light trucks compared to 1999 models, Hansen said. For example, the 1999 Taurus could be built in 500,000 different combinations. The 2000 Taurus can be built only in 14,000.