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Nationwide Vehicle Contracts Ltd is an appointed representative of Lombard Vehicle Management, Network Vehicles, Renault Financial Services.
Henry Ford was 40 when, in 1903, the Ford motor company was launched. It has since grown into the largest family owned company in the world having been in continuous family control for over 100 years.
Early Ford motor vehicles were allocated a letter with model A fords being produced in 1903. Two of these cars were shown at a Motor show in London that same year and this inspired the creation of a sales agency in Long Acre, London. Cars were being produced in Detroit at a rate of only a few a day. By 1908 they were producing the Model S which was superseded by the well known Model T. In 1909 around 18000 model T fords were produced.
In 1913 Ford introduced the first moving assembly line, an innovation in mass production. The assembly line reduced car construction time enormously, significantly boosting the annual output of the production plant.
During these years of rapid, innovative production line development Ford suffered from a lot of staffing problems. They took some very radical steps to reduce staff turnover which resulted in better staff retention, a happier workforce, higher productivity and lower vehicle costs. It was in 1911 that overseas expansion took place with factories opening in England and France and by the end of 1919 Ford were producing 40% of the cars sold in Britain.
Henry Ford was a committed pacifist who spoke out against the First World War. He was instrumental in chartering a ship to sail to Europe with a group of prominent peace supporters in order to hold a conference with European leaders in the hope of stopping the war. The mission failed miserably but did result in Henry Ford's focus shifting from being totally concerned with his business to the needs of the common man and, in particular, his workforce.
It was in 1919 that Edsel Ford took over from his father. At this time Ford's competitors were coming up with new features for their vehicles in response to consumer demand. This led to Ford losing market share to General Motors and Chrysler. These competitors had opened new markets by introducing credit agreements for customers enabling them to buy vehicles by making regular monthly payments. Ford initially resisted this approach to sales but they eventually started to offer the same purchase arrangements in 1927.
After the Second World War it was Henry Ford's oldest grandson (Henry Ford II) who took over as president of the company. It was he who led the company to become pubicly traded in 1956 with the Ford family retaining ownership of about 40% of the company.
The 1950s saw the introduction of the iconic Ford Thunderbird in 1955 and this was followed by the compact Ford Falcon in 1960 and the Ford Mustang in 1964.
Since the 1960's the Ford motor company have continued to innovate and deliver vehicles to the marketplace that meet the needs and demands of the users. Their commercial vehicles are highly regarded around the world and their famous Ford Transit, first introduced in 1965. This commercial workhorse has undergone several generations of redevelopment and numerous facelifts that have led to the Mark 7 Ford Transit which was awarded the International Van of the Year award in 2007. The company continues to listen to the needs of their customers, translating these into innovative features that make their vehicles increasingly safe and efficient to drive.
Van leasing and van contract hire is available on every model of Ford commercial vehicle, including the award winning Ford Transit.
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