Doing the Ford Shuffle, Tesla Low Key Recall Dance, Walmart Making It Seem Easy

September 23, 2022
It’s time for that Friday Feeling as we talk about Ford’s significant executive reorganization. We also cover Tesla’s recall that Elon Musk doesn’t like calling a recall, as well as Walmart’s move to be the easiest place for Christmas shopping this year.
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Ford announced a sizeable reorganization of it’s executive team yesterday shifting some experienced Ford execs and adding new talent from other industries to its ranks

  • Long time product and purchasing chier, Hau Thai-Tang, was a part of the announcement as CFO John Lawler will oversee a remake of Ford’s global supply chain operations until a replacement is found
  • Doug Field, who was chief advanced technology and embedded systems officer, becomes chief advanced product development and technology officer. In addition to his current duties overseeing EVs and software, he'll now be in charge of design and vehicle hardware engineering.
  • From outside the industry, former VP and Global head of software at HP, Roz Ho will be Ford’s Chief Connected Vehicle Software officer
  • Rob Bedicheck who comes from a background including Apple and Intel will be the Executive Director of Platform Architecture
  • Ford CEO Jim Farley said "Developing and scaling the next generation of electric and software-defined vehicles requires a different focus and mix of talent from the accomplished Ford team and many exciting new colleagues joining our company."

Tesla recalls over a million vehicles in the US due to abnormal variations in response to window reversal during pinch detection

  • The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration stated that the recalled vehicles’ window automatic reversal system did not meet the standards of federal motor vehicle safety.
  • The NHTSA said a closing window without the proper automatic reversing system may exert excessive force by pinching a driver or passenger before retracting
  • Tesla quickly corrected the issue via an over the air software update
  • CEO Elon Musk tweeted, "The terminology is outdated & inaccurate. This is a tiny over-the-air software update. To the best of our knowledge, there have been no injuries," he said.

Walmart is positioning itself to not only be the lowest price retailer for the Christmas season, but also the easiest place to shop as it rolls out their ‘no concerns’ return options for those looking to get an early start on Christmas shopping

  • These include an extended return window for early shoppers. Purchases from Oct 1 will be eligible for return through January 31st 2023
  • Walmart+ customers will enjoy both curbside returns to compliment curbside pick up AND the company will even pick up returns at customers homes.
  • Walmart also announced they will be adding 40k seasonal and full time jobs

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SPEAKERS

Kyle Mountsier, Paul Daly


Paul Daly  00:27

Who's got the Friday feeling? Feeling hats backwards. We got to talk a little about Ford. Doing a little maneuvering Tesla doing their little maneuvering Walmart doing their little bit over. The people really want to know let me just warn you that the word Christmas is gonna come up in the podcast today. I it was a little too early for me when I read the article.


Kyle Mountsier  00:56

It almost made me throw up. But I understand because we're approaching October 1, which is the time that Home Depot gets thrown up on by Christmas.


Paul Daly  01:06

Well, Home Depot got thrown up on by Halloween and like August 12.


Kyle Mountsier  01:11

Oh, absolutely. Yeah, they were like, oh, Memorial Day is over. When's the next holiday Labor Day or


Paul Daly  01:19

gigantic shrink? Jacqueline and guy that's gonna scare my kids in actually, I


Kyle Mountsier  01:25

think Hobby Lobby had Christmas going in June. That was


Paul Daly  01:31

that but that but that's kind of on bread for them. If I ever needed Christmas stuff in June, I would probably check Hobby Lobby. Speaking of Christmas, Donald boy. What what are we stopping? No. Yeah. Okay, there you go. Well, I


Kyle Mountsier  01:45

was just gonna say, you know, hey, we're gonna do a year and extravaganza, that's the official announcement. We've already talked about it. We don't have great early announcements. But it's a seriously early announcement. If you're paying attention we're doing another year in extravaganza, we're gonna throw down more than we did last year. We're gonna have, we're gonna have we're gonna fill you in December with some joy and happiness. And maybe the Grinch will show up


Paul Daly  02:07

if he did last year with Paul Walters basement. Strangely enough. Look, the auto industry has just went too long without a proper Christmas show. Right. And last year, we're like, there are only two people that are willing to fix that. We actually wore jackets and ties and we got a live band. And they played on the live stream. Like if you're kind of new to the asoto verse before like, really, within the last 10 months, you probably wouldn't even know this. But you can go to our YouTube channel, which is a so tube as Oh, T U dot V, scroll down a little bit. And it's the year and extravaganza you can see it. It was a lot of fun. It was probably a lot of fun to rewatch, because we had. I mean, think about the guests we have and some of the people we had actually popped off in the meantime, Jesse Cole, the owner of the savannah bananas, right? Like he was like he was on record. And now he's like, got his own ESPN show. We're not saying it's because he was on the year and extravagant. Awfully.


Kyle Mountsier  03:05

So you want to blow up next year, but no, I'm just kidding.


Paul Daly  03:08

Yeah. No, well, that was an interesting announcement for Friday, September 23. September, it's really feeling it just well. We'll get to Christmas in a second. Another couple other things going on. We're going to be at the name ed conference in less than 20 days in Miami. We're going to be at the creative running the creative track for the modern retail Brian passions modern retail conference in November in Palm Beach. Boy, we're going to be in Florida a lot. I think it's a good time to be in Florida, Florida in June. Please don't ever ask me to do that. No, nobody asked me to do that. And we're releasing some auto collabs episodes if you don't know auto collabs is our other podcast, where we invite our friend Michael Cirilo in, and we have a little bit of more of a long form conversation. We have a ton of fun. We have a ton of great guests. Is today, Charlie Chesbro. Today, is that was that yesterday? I don't remember anymore.


Kyle Mountsier  03:58

It's probably either way. We're gonna do search sometime here if


Paul Daly  04:02

you search auto collabs production teams like yes, you idiots. That's why That's why we got a production team keep us? Oh, I know. I know. But we have a little bit of news to talk about and it's fun today's I feel like we got like some fun stuff. We're going to take you on a whole journey and end up with a little bit more Christmas spirit. But a Ford announced a sizable reorganization of their executive team yesterday shifting some experience for the execs redefining some of the roles and then adding some talent from outside the industry, which we always love to hear to the ranks. I mean, this all coincides with our longtime product and purchasing chair, how tie Tang who was part of the announcement, as CFO John Lawler will oversee and remake Ford's global supply chain right he's just going to oversee these extra responsibilities until they find a permanent fit. Doug field who was get this chief advanced technology and embedded systems officer. That's that title. Put that on a business card Hebei, they made it a little simpler. And now it's chief advanced product development and technology officer. So that actually broaden the scope a little bit


Kyle Mountsier  05:07

the ca pdtc. To Exactly,


Paul Daly  05:11

yeah, yeah. And his current duties. He oversees evey software. But now he's also going to be in charge of design and vehicle hardware engineering. So it's good to bring the software and hardware together. Companies that do that. Well, they tend to make really great products. Apple. Yes, right. Exactly. From outside the industry. They're bringing in some new folks, former VP and Global Head of software at HP razo will be forged chief connected vehicle software officer. There's just a lot of things going on here. And this is probably the the biggest one, maybe Rob, better check who comes from a background including a couple little companies called Apple and Intel. He's going to be the executive director of platform architecture.


Kyle Mountsier  05:55

Sounds like a lot of software stuff going on here. Yeah.


Paul Daly  05:59

Not quite the car guy feel is it? Hmm. Ford CEO Jim Farley said, quote, developing and scaling the next generation of electric and software defined vehicles requires a different focus, and mix of talent from the accomplished 14 and many excited new, exciting new colleagues joining our company, they're probably


Kyle Mountsier  06:19

got a bone to pick, I got a bone to pick, I think automakers should stick to auto. I'm calling it right now.


Paul Daly  06:28

You got to explain that one.


Kyle Mountsier  06:30

Because here's the thing. I get like I get we want to have the software services and get we want to have technology in the car and I get I get all of that stuff. But for literally the last 20 years, we've been trying to keep up with auto even. Even up until now like I've still not found we talked about this many times, there has not been an infotainment or ecosystem that is integrated in the car that looks feels operates is as fast as needed. Like there's not a single one out there. That's good. It's not even good. Not like not great. Not even good. Have we accomplished yet. So what's the like? I mean, well,


Paul Daly  07:10

doesn't that actually doesn't that actually support the argument that they need to bring some other people in? No, because


Kyle Mountsier  07:15

my thing is like, there's a whole bunch of other technology partners out there. Oh, I


Paul Daly  07:19

see what you're saying. Like you're saying just leverage the other technology and stop building other cells.


Kyle Mountsier  07:24

Right. You know, it doesn't make any sense to me a


Paul Daly  07:27

law of going vertical is such a tempting one. And I think in Jim Farley's case, there's like, this is all xOP presumption. But there is this public desire to be seen as a technology leader, because it's a real sexy thing right now.


Kyle Mountsier  07:44

Yeah. It's like sexy to be Elon Musk. Right. But not everybody's you can


Paul Daly  07:49

say that. But it's true. Right, right. But well, since since we're picking on Jim Farley for a minute, he'll never hear this. Maybe we'll get


08:00

shipped in a cease and desist.


08:02

We're not gonna get that.


Paul Daly  08:04

Care about that. Just send them a picture of us. They'll be like, Oh, we're right. Yeah, no. So you and I were having this conversation because a dealer friend of ours sent us a podcast, a popular podcast, where people were throwing dealers under the bus, right, and they were inside the dealership model. And one of the things that comes up is Jim Farley's public facing rhetoric that dealers basically add $2,000 using a dealer network adds $2,000 to the price of ever used vehicles. So it doesn't take a rocket scientist to translate that into consumers thinking like, yeah, dealers are ripping us off even more or dealers are bad for


Kyle Mountsier  08:40

us. Dealers, however, is at minimum, right. However, ripping us off. Yeah,


Paul Daly  08:44

so that's like facing the customer. And then you go to Las Vegas. And the from last week, was it this week? It was last week, last week. And it's like, we really need our dealer network to be strong. Right, right. And it's like the rah rah session on here's how we're going to make it better for dealers and their fields. It's really feels like there's two sides being played here. It just does. It just does. And I don't like that. I


Kyle Mountsier  09:10

mean, there's so many times that this has happened in OEM and even industry partners like you look at historical two sided marketplace advertising campaigns that vilify the dealer yet take the majority of their funds from the dealer like, oh, man, you got me fired up on a Friday.


Paul Daly  09:26

Listen, like, like get your will give them a chance to explain it once. I know. We'll come on the show like


Kyle Mountsier  09:33

the show. Let's talk about it because this is a real issue because it literally we keep talking about this. It takes everyone it takes the consumer, it takes the OEM, the dealer, the industry partner all coming together, going hey, look, we're all here to solve the customer experience. Let's stop fighting each other to help each other Yeah, it can't


Paul Daly  09:51

be and like, I know there's so many great for dealers that want to so badly support the new model II and initiative and and they're


Kyle Mountsier  10:02

great. And they should they should be modeled li certified. That is that is something that I think for dealers and any dealer that is looking to like, if you can be if you're a Nissan dealer and you can be GTR certified it, you should do it if you know, whenever you can be better for the customer, you should do it and the OEM is calling you to that. But there are these other places where the house is still divided. And that's not a positive thing for the consumer, the dealer or the OEM.


Paul Daly  10:30

Truth. I think that's all we have to say about that. I think we've said too much already. It's okay


Kyle Mountsier  10:37

to hand slapped today, but it's okay, come along arrived, getting your hand slapped.


Paul Daly  10:43

Or should I say, speaking of getting your hand pinched, Tesla recalled over 1 million vehicles in the US due to abnormal variations in response to Window reversal during pinch detection, meaning your fingers in the window and it rolls up and it's not consistent in the way like how much pressure it takes to pull back the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration stated the recalled vehicles automatic reversal system did not meet the standards of federal motor vehicle statement. Funny thing is Tesla is the one that brought this up saying we detected some abnormalities and hadn't looked at you know, they said you know it could have excessive force and injured driver distracted driver, you get the point. Here's here's the interesting part of the story. Tesla just corrected it via an over the air software update.


Kyle Mountsier  11:30

Boom. No visit to a dealership. No, no letters, email, no letter, just an update, just


Paul Daly  11:37

think about let's let's reverse engineer this for a second. And what happens if this is kind of the traditional recall mode. What happens? Okay, it has to be recalled, I was immediately ready got


Kyle Mountsier  11:50

through it. And the manufacturer says okay, we got everything recalled, it stays kind of internal until they figure out whether the parts or the service that they can do for another month and a half can actually be actually be executed upon deployed and someone says the marketing department we need to ship in a letter and an email out to at 100% of the vehicle owners that own this vehicle. That thing gets dropped at nine o'clock on that on that morning. The day after that thing gets dropped to three o'clock in the afternoon, everybody gets home and gets the letter A billion dealers get start getting calls from all of these customers to which their BDC responds what recall, not because their BDC doesn't care, but because they actually haven't been communicated about it because it actually gets communicated to the customer first. And so then you have to figure out whether you got the loaner vehicles or the parts of the service or whether your ex time is set up to handle the capacities based on the number of people that are going to influx and whether or not you have your technicians on vacation, because you just got made aware of it when the customer got made aware of it. And then the customers come in, and they spend about 45 minutes in the shop to get a software technology thing. Fix it right, which is a great opportunity for the dealer to retain a customer so you get customer care, but you're always on the recoil on that one,


Paul Daly  13:05

or update update. I know that the cool thing about this is that you know we're moving to a future where more cars will be outfitted to do this CEO Elon Musk Of course, he had something to say about this on Twitter. And he was actually a little perturbed that we're going to call this a recall even though the and the Highway Safety Administration is like what actually fits all the definitions. He said the terminology is outdated and inaccurate This is a tiny over the air software update. The best So to the best of our knowledge there have been no injuries. Right? So tested like hey, we brought this up. We are like we can fix it this way. And now it's a recall now it's in the news. And now these two drones are on YouTube or whatever talking about it.


Kyle Mountsier  13:52

These two drones I get his point because it's like Apple doesn't have to recall a million I know but they're I mean there are a few I get it it's not like iPhones are Burnin Up in your pocket or any it is


Paul Daly  14:06

well I could I guess it's got a battery


Kyle Mountsier  14:11

but either way I'm impressed color me impressed that they that they solved a recall with an over the air update. And I'm excited to see more technology introduced to where we can solve some of these problems without you know, I think it's just gonna be better for the customer. And yeah, I think the dealers gonna find other ways to serve the customer and then up to do things that are actually easier and better for the customer instead of having to worry about software updates without you


Paul Daly  14:35

know on your heels. Like no one's excited to be they all want anyway. Well speaking of making things easy for the customer it's Christmas time y'all.


Kyle Mountsier  14:46

All right. Christmas song playing


Paul Daly  14:50

out would have been amazing. Everybody would have liked Oh, that would have stopped the stop the ticker for a second. So Walmart is positioning itself to not only be the lowest price retailer which It always positions itself that way for the Christmas season. But it's also positioning itself to be the easiest place to shop as it rolls out there no concerns, return options for those looking to get an early start on shopping. So three big things that are coming out. The first one is for everybody. So there is an extended return window for anyone shopping from October 1, your items are eligible return all the way through January 31 2023. We know in previous stories, we've talked about, you know, early sales, early Christmas specials, retailers trying to get in with consumers early to get shopping done early, because I guess they're probably thinking, you know, the financial position to the economy is not going to improve. So getting more people to make decisions now is probably beneficial. So Walmart is the put it right out there, say like, Hey, don't worry about it, buy it now you can bring it back if you end up not needing it.


Kyle Mountsier  15:51

Maybe registry is so smart, right? Like I mean, they do this all the time with baby registries and wedding registries is just like passing that on to Christmas registries. It's it's same gifting philosophy.


Paul Daly  16:02

So I'm remembering what I had to do for my wedding registry. And how different it probably is now. You had to like go to a kiosk and they gave you a scanning gun. And there's all this paperwork. Yes,


Kyle Mountsier  16:13

yeah, you're right. You gotta go.


Paul Daly  16:18

You gotta walk to the store. And then, and some of the stuff is only available in your local store.


Kyle Mountsier  16:23

Or so that it's like, Nah, someone can't get that. Like. Remember, I think about Yeah, the difference between like, me doing that. And then we just had a baby. And so like that registry was like being big being all done on Amazon.


Paul Daly  16:37

Oh, man, Amazon. Ah, I'm so old now. Amazon, right,


16:41

Amazon. All right, get to the next point. Oh, yeah. So better I like


Paul Daly  16:46

it's actually tied in with Amazon. So if you're a Walmart Plus member, which is basically like Walmart's Amazon Prime, right. So you now can do curbside returns, everyone's used to curbside pickup. Now you can do curbside returns, where you can just hand the product to a, you know, a rep, they'll scan it, and you're done. But this one takes the cake takes the cake, they will come to your house to pick up your return. That is so next level.


Kyle Mountsier  17:15

Let me ask you something. If a dealer was ever like, hey, we have a return policy also. We'll come get it.


Paul Daly  17:24

And when you why wouldn't you? Like right? If Walmart is going to do it for like a $6 item? I would even lower well correct but our swap everything over and not a problem. So I mean, just think of the convenience store entry into just basic low level retail. I think this is a great just excuse ticker aware. This just say like, look, Walmart's doing this with at at scale at Mass. Right? And they're taking a swing, right? Who knows how it worked out? Yeah. And it could be a total disaster here


Kyle Mountsier  17:56

about they might who knows, maybe people don't even like it's not a thing. I doubt it. But


Paul Daly  18:01

yeah, I doubt it, too. I doubt it, too. But yeah, I think like just as retailers. One of the reasons we include this retail stuff so frequently, in this show in all of our other content is because retail is retail and automotive is retail. And so listening to what consumers are doing, looking at the other major retailers and decisions they're making, and trends that you're seeing, should be internalized for how we're delivering services and what we are doing as an industry. So we hope that at the very least, this retail stuff like you know some people you know, might think like, Oh, why talking about retail? Why you're talking about pop culture? The reason we do it is because your consumers are retail minded folks who are involved and enveloped in pop culture. They're buying


Kyle Mountsier  18:45

stuff. They have expectations based on the cultural norms and Walmart sets cultural norms. So watch out for their expectations about your retailing experience based on their alternate retail experiences.


Paul Daly  18:57

I think that is enough show for Friday,


Kyle Mountsier  19:00

we came on


Paul Daly  19:02

was probably the hardest Friday show we've ever done. So thank you so much for being here. Finish Friday strong. Go crush Saturday if you're doing it