Number of dealers in the Ford CEO Model e electric vehicle program

After Ford’s National Dealer Meeting in September, every dealer (about 3,000 in total) had the opportunity to sign up for the company’s new Model e business. The program allows Ford dealers to invest in the future and be part of the automaker’s “revolutionary” electric vehicle transformation.

During an interview at the Automotive News World Congress on Monday, Ford CEO Jim Farley revealed how many dealers have signed up for the initial Model e Program for 2024-2026.

Throughout its nearly 120-year history, Ford has seen the automotive industry evolve through several major transformations to meet the demands of modern society.

Ford has remained one of the best automakers throughout its history by listening to its customers and adjusting strategically. After announcing the Ford+ plan to accelerate growth and accelerate EV deployment, Farley declared it a huge opportunity, calling it:

It’s the biggest opportunity for growth and value creation since Henry Ford began expanding the Model T, and we’re grabbing it with both hands.

In March, the company expanded its growth strategy by creating three distinct business units: Model e, Ford Blue and Ford Pro.

  • Model e: accelerating innovation at scale and the electric vehicle revolution.
  • Ford Blue: Will use the cash flow to expand the EV division to build the company’s portfolio of ICE vehicles.
  • Ford Pro: the company’s business and software solutions.

“This isn’t the first time Ford has reimagined the future and gone our own way,” Ford Chairman Bill Ford said in March as the company embarked on its electric journey.

However, in order to compete with current leader Tesla, Ford realized that it needed to simplify the customer experience. While Tesla cuts out the middleman and sells directly to the consumer, Ford says, “We’re betting on dealers. We don’t go directly. But we have to specialize.”

Ford’s Model e dealer electric vehicle program

To compete, Farley said, the company must reduce costs, increase profitability and deliver a superior customer experience.

Ford asked its dealer network to “join us on an epic journey of continued expansion and customer excellence” and gave them the opportunity to join the new Model e business.

Under the program, Ford dealers can choose one of two levels to become “EV certified.” The low level requires an initial investment of 500K and includes:

  • Repair and maintenance
  • A common DC fast charger
  • No EV to display (BTO only)
  • No availability on

The “certified elite” includes two public DC fast chargers, demo units, fast charging and availability on, but will cost about $1 million to $1.2 million.

On Monday, Farley announced 1,920 Ford dealers enrolled in the initial voluntary Model e program for 2024-2026. Of these:

  • 1659 people chose the Certified Elite level.
  • 261 chose the certified level.

Ford says that dealers who opt out will have another opportunity to participate in the electric vehicle program in 2025, which will allow them to sell EVs in 2027.

Electrek’s Take

That’s more than 1,000, or 1/3, of US Ford Dealers that won’t sell electric cars until at least 2027, which at first seems staggering.

But on the other hand, with 96% of car customers living within 20 miles of a Ford dealership, the app is smart for the automaker to facilitate the sale of an EV.

Ford is currently the number two EV maker in the U.S. behind Tesla, but to overtake the EV pioneer, everyone needs to get on board, starting with dealers. Perhaps more importantly, with 1,659 dealers receiving two existing DC fast chargers and another 261 devices on the Blue Oval Charging Network (BOCN), Ford will soon have one of the largest EV charging networks in the US. Although there will be fewer charging points, there will be more Tesla Supercharger locations. Many of them will be in high-density environments, and Ford says they will be open to the public.

Ford’s Blue Oval Charging Network (BOCN) confederation currently has more than 4,000 DC fast charging locations from a number of players including Electrify America, ChargePoint and others. As dealers roll out new chargers, it will continue to count towards the 6,000 mark.

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