Originally Posted by Just Tom
I just had a follow-up thought with respect to my last comment. There may be another reason for why more "customizable" options were available in 2012 than with 2013 models. As 2012 was the first model year, it would seem logical that Ford was evaluating what options, combination of options and colors were most popular. At some point they obviously made changes to the option packages, so I can only assume it was based on the previous model year statistics. Just a thought.
They "streamlined" things based on what the dealer cares about, selling a much more expensive car and not leaving the educated consumer the choice in the matter. They don't care about the consumer having the choice to choose the options that are best suited for them as most of the cars are ordered for dealer stock and sold off the lot unlike in europe where most of the cars are custom and cusomer ordered and the dealer migh have a few demonstrators on the forecourt instead of a huge lot worth of cars/ trucks/ vans.
I didn't want leather seats when I ordered my car, although if the leather really did work better with the seat heaters than I'd have considered it, but only in the medium light stone interior trim color scheme which was much more upscale in appearance and lightened the cabin ambiance over the dark and dreary black leather seats.
I ordered an SEL 300A with winter package because it was the least amount of compromise to get what I had wanted at the time. This paint color was only available with disk brakes and alloy wheels on all four corners on the SEL trim, particularly as a hatchback. I could have gotten an SE SFE sedan with less equipment for less money if I wanted a sedan and was willing to compromise on the steel wheels.
I had gone back and forth through the entire options matrix/ combination availability on the 2012s before deciding on what was the best equipped car for the money.
The base SEL was less expensive on A/Z plan than the loaded up SE 203A and only gave up the stupid sirius reciever due to the bundling that stated that you had to get MFT on the SEL to get this even though the sync w/ myford module was compatble and the same between the se and the sel.
It would be most profitable if they were to only build to order and not carry large quantities of unsold inventory, although here in the states people are too impatient and want to pick something off the lot.
I understand why they did it, but it is only good for the dealers and the company, not the end customer who is informed and makes rational decisions.
Now given that most Americans buy cars off of the lot based on emotion it probably won't hurt their sales especially if they lower the rebates and incentives and sell the cars sooner rather than having unsold cars on the lots for 6 months. However in the re-arranging of features they made the 16" alloy wheels standard on the SE but removed the fog lamps and the rear disk brakes require a $2700+ dollar option package on anything other than the SFE sedan where the option was reduced in price to $95 instead of $495 because you are trading in the alloy wheels for the aero and software tweaks (spoiler, rear disk brakes with low drag, the aero hubcaps,etc).