Regardless what you drive, Ford wants your aftermarket OEM-fit parts business: that’s the logic behind its new line of Omnicraft parts designed to fit a wide variety of vehicles from popular competitive makes.
As with any business decision, the move is one conceived to help boost Ford’s profits: with Omnicraft in place, Ford and Lincoln dealer service departments that do maintenance and repairs on other brands’ vehicles will have access to an in-house source of parts.
It should also make it less expensive for Ford stores with a used-vehicle department to recondition non-Ford and -Lincoln cars taken in on trade.
Once Omnicraft is running at full capacity, it will carry parts to fit up to 90 percent of competitive makes, according to Automotive News.
And according to Ford’s customer service division president Frederiek Toney, they will be “backed by Ford,” which we presume means they will come with the usual warranty against manufacturer’s defects; we expect installation will be warrantied too, if the parts are installed by a Ford service technician.
Omnicraft is starting out small: as of the brand’s January 2017 launch, about 1,500 of the “most commonly requested” parts were available – oil filters, brake components, suspension struts, starter motors, and alternators – but the line will expand to eventually include about 10,000 individual parts. Ford says Omnicraft is the first new brand in its customer service division in 50 years.
The initial rollout covers about 500 U.S. Ford and Lincoln dealers, but by some time in 2018, all 3,200 of the automaker’s American dealerships will have access to the Omnicraft line. Ford service departments will sell the parts over the counter to do-it-yourselfers, or do the work for you, just as they would with Ford vehicle parts sold through the company’s Motorcraft line.
There are no details yet on when the parts will be available through Canadian dealers, but a Ford Canada spokesperson told Automotive News the automaker will have more information to offer in the future about Omnicraft’s rollout in Canada.