Hackett announced plans last week to build modem connectivity into Ford's full U.S. lineup within two years.
About 55 percent of Ford's lineup is connected today. The automaker still is exploring how it will commoditize that connectivity and what services it could offer.
"I don't feel that where we are competitively is where we should be," Hackett said, adding he felt that could be resolved rather quickly.
GM's vehicles have been connected through OnStar since the subsidiary was founded in 1996. It began adding 4G LTE Internet to vehicles in 2014. More than 6 million GM vehicles are now equipped with 4G LTE in North America.
Connectivity is a key part of the development and deployment of autonomous vehicles. Different paths
GM and Ford have been testing self-driving vehicles on public roads, though the two have taken different paths.
GM is on what it calls its third generation of the self-driving Chevrolet Bolts it's developing through Cruise Automation, which it bought in 2016. The company has roughly tripled its California test fleet of self-driving cars since July and aims to become the first automaker to deploy them for ride-sharing and ride-hailing purposes through a partnership with Lyft.
Ford, which is testing self-driving Fusion sedans, also formed a partnership with Lyft last month. It's planning to launch a Level 4 self-driving vehicle for commercial use in 2021. Ford has said it wants high utilization rates to make it as profitable as possible.
"The best model to do that is to have a diverse group of businesses and services to utilize the vehicle all day long," Farley said.
To prepare itself for such a future, Ford is embarking on a regimen to improve its fitness, which is a favorite term of Hackett.
The company plans to reduce the rate of growth in automotive costs by half through 2022. It's vowing to cut $10 billion in incremental material costs and $4 billion in engineering expenses over the next five years. It hopes to achieve that through more common parts and design technology that requires building fewer prototypes.
Ford said it's reallocating $7 billion of capital from cars to light trucks. This year, it decided to move production of the next-generation Focus from North America to China to save money. It also has been chasing GM and other rivals in hot segments such as midsize pickups and compact crossovers.
The automaker said that shift in spending on light-vehicle development would result in fewer car nameplates but did not provide specifics.
Those moves are meant to bolster profit margins, an area Hackett has admitted Ford lags GM and wants to fix.
Ford's second-quarter profit margin of 5.9 percent was down from 7.7 percent a year ago and well below the 10 percent margin that General Motors reported for the same period. The two companies are scheduled to release third-quarter results this month.
Hackett said Ford still has a long-term goal of an 8 percent operating margin on the core automotive business as it looks to boost overall profitability.
Some analysts, though, still want Ford to provide many more details and answer more questions before buying into the company's plans under Hackett.
"While the building blocks may be in place, it will take quite some time for benefits to be clear and likely for investors to give credit," Barclays analyst Brian Johnson wrote in a note to investors. "Thus for the time being, investor focus on Ford will be around quarterly earnings and '18 guidance — where we don't see much positive surprise."