Ford Says Its Affordable EV Will Cost $30,0000 and Compete Directly With Tesla and BYD

Along with an overall shift toward smaller, profitable EVs.

Ford's EV manufacturing plant making F-150 Lightning

An entry-level EV for Americans couldn’t come soon enough.

Ford’s CEO Jim Farley teased the automaker’s next budget EV at the Aspen Ideas Festival, an academic conference in Colorado. According to Farley, Ford is working on an EV priced at $30,000 that should be profitable in 2.5 years. For more context, Farley added that this affordable EV will go head-to-head with BYD’s competitively-priced options and a potential entry-level Tesla.

So far, this is the most detailed info revealed about Ford’s plans for cheaper EVs. Farley even said that the automaker wants to prioritize smaller EVs instead of large all-electric trucks and SUVs and his latest comments mark a shift in Ford’s philosophy — its current lineup so far includes the Mustang Mach-E and F-150 Lightning.

Ford may have figured out its larger EV models, but it’s time to figure out the more compact segment.


Bigger Isn’t Always Better

Ford’s CEO told CNBC that massive EV models are “never going to make money” thanks to the battery costs behind, which could be up to $50,000. Instead, Ford plans to shift toward smaller, affordable EVs.

“We have to start to get back in love with smaller vehicles,” Farley said at the conference. “We are just in love with these monster vehicles, and I love them too, but it’s a major issue with weight.”

The future of EVs might not include as many big EVs with heavy batteries.


Even though Ford is known for its bestselling trucks, it still has some experience with more compact car designs, like the Focus, Fiesta, or even the Bronco. Developing smaller EVs could be a win-win for Ford since it could cut down on manufacturing costs and could immediately start seeing profitability.

Even though there will be some competition coming from other automakers, there’s no reason why there can’t be two bestselling affordable EVs, much like what the Honda Civic was to the Toyota Corolla.

Who Will Be First to Market?

Farley didn’t specify exactly when Ford plans to debut this $30,000 EV, but the profitability timeline of 2.5 years does offer a hint that the automaker is somewhat close to a reveal. On top of that, Ford’s skunkworks team that’s responsible for developing a smaller EV platform already has two years of work under its belt. Considering the news of the Bolt’s return in 2025, the rumors of an even more affordable Tesla model, and BYD continuing to creep into North America, Ford has some competition brewing.

As for price, Ford’s $30,000 estimate might not hit the mark for being the most affordable EV in the United States. Even though Americans currently lack entry-level EV options, that accolade may soon be awarded to the Bolt, which already has a loyal customer base. Unfortunately, Farley didn’t reveal if that $30,000 mark factors in federal EV tax credits or not, which it should qualify for.

Related Tags