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http://wardsauto.com/auto-makers/fo...com&YM_MID=1470704&sfvc4enews=42&cl=article_1

DETROIT – Ford is tops among automakers in terms of product-replacement rate over the next four years, followed by Honda, according to the Bank of America Merrill Lynch “Car Wars” study.

A high replacement rate drives down showroom age, which increases market share, and in turn fuels profits and stock prices, the study says. Automakers with the highest replacement rate and youngest relative showroom age generally have gained market share from 2004-2014.

“Model-introduction activity is picking up aggressively in the next four years with 48 models per year on average, which is above the traditional average of 38,” John Murphy, an analyst for Bank of America Merrill Lynch, says at an Automotive Press Assn. meeting here. “Companies have had time to recover from the trough in 2009 and ramp up investment and pull some stuff forward a little bit.”

Ford’s product-replacement rate of 111% over the next four years should benefit the automaker with a slight increase in market share, ultimately settling in the low 16% range, up from 15.7% today, the study says. Upcoming product launches include the aluminum-intensive ’15 Ford F-150 pickup, ’15 Mustang, ’15 Transit commercial van and ’15 Lincoln MKC CUV.

“Ford has gotten the idea it has to keep its replacement rate high for market share and pricing,” Murphy says. “It’s leveraging its global platforms and taking advantage of economies of scale.”

Automakers lagging in product replacement in the next four years include Nissan, which Lynch describes as a “ship without a rudder in terms of product launches,” and European makes, including Volkswagen.

“VW seems to be similar to Nissan in that its product launches are perplexing and not robust going forward, especially with their targets for market share,” he says.
 

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It's a good time to be a Ford follower, constant stream of new products and One-Ford has driven that massive and rapid change. No company can match Ford's aggressive globalization and commitment to profound technological innovation in such huge volumes. Ford is a company that has it's **** together, it's very gratifying to see how the company has cleaned up its operations and tied everything together.
 

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Lincoln's future is still a little foggy and their leadership unproven, but they have a long road ahead and they appear to be making decisions very systematically. Progress is incredibly slow but I don't think their efforts are duplicative, they are doing something unique in a market that doesn't really have any gaps left.
 
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