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Ford Wins 2011 Automotive News Suppliers' Choice Award

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FYI: Ford Buyer's Guide

TRAVERSE CITY, MI--Aug. 1, 2011:

  • Ford is working more closely than ever with suppliers to offer increasing levels of new technologies in its vehicles
  • Ford uses Aligned Business Framework principles to promote early collaboration with suppliers on innovative vehicle features

Ford Motor Company , which is working closely with suppliers to offer increasing levels of new technologies in its vehicles, was named a winner Monday of the 2011 Automotive News Suppliers' Choice Award.

The award, announced at the Center for Automotive Research's annual conference here, recognizes outstanding work in bringing innovations to market. Winners were chosen through a detailed survey of suppliers that J.D. Power and Associates conducts for Automotive News every two years. It ranks North American automakers on their ability to support, foster and commercialize the suppliers' innovations.

"I am pleased to accept this award, not just on behalf of Ford Purchasing, but for all our colleagues in Product Development and throughout the entire Ford organization," said Birgit Behrendt, executive director, Ford Global Programs and The Americas Purchasing.

Ford's top performance in 2011 follows a significant improvement in the 2009 study, and is the latest example of Ford's continuously improving supplier relations. Ford uses the principles of its Aligned Business Framework (ABF) to guide how it works with suppliers. In addition to collaboration and transparency, ABF promotes early sharing of product plans and new technologies between Ford and its key suppliers.

"Smart technologies are a distinguishing feature of Ford vehicles and we are collaborating more closely than ever with our suppliers to put these in customers' hands," said Tony Brown, group vice president, Ford Global Purchasing. "It is gratifying to see that our efforts are paying off, because they represent a win for both Ford and our suppliers."

The new Ford Focus shows how Ford is working closely with suppliers to equip vehicles with numerous technologies that enhance customer comfort and convenience €“ technologies that are normally associated with luxury vehicles. The Focus includes 14 key technology benefits, such as the Active City Stop feature that helps drivers avoid low-speed collisions, that are the result of early cooperation with suppliers during the car's development process.

"Suppliers are a tremendous source of the new ideas that bring added benefits to our customers," said Brown. "Using ABF, we will continue to improve on our relationships and become the customer of choice for innovations that benefit all of us."

In the Automotive News survey, automakers are evaluated on five factors: openness to new ideas; ease of working with the automaker on innovative ideas; level of trust; willingness to provide financial incentives or rewards for supplier innovation; and ability to implement innovations.

The 2011 survey included responses from supplier CEOs, presidents and executives, and represents all areas of vehicle design, engineering and manufacturing. Responses on 15 automakers that manufacture vehicles in North America are included.

The survey, launched in 2003, was conducted for Automotive News by J.D. Power.