Thai-Tang, a Vietnamese immigrant raised in New York, joined Ford in 1988 out of college. He had a number of high-profile product development and purchasing roles that included stints in Germany and South America. Most recently, he helped spearhead development of the Bronco, Maverick and Mustang Mach-E while also working as Ford’s top supplier liaison.
He said the decision to retire was his own.
“Serving a company the size of Ford at the officer level is demanding; it’s an all-consuming job,” he said.
“It’s never easy in our business to decide when is a good time to go because of the nature of each product. [CEO Jim Farley] and I talked about what’s the right timing given the transition that’s happening and for me, coming off the heels of all the product launches we’ve rolled out over the last 18, 24 months starting with F-150, it just felt like the right time.”
Thai-Tang said he has full confidence in Farley and his Ford+ strategy to split the business into separate units focused on electric and internal combustion vehicles, as well as on commercial products and software services.
“It’s absolutely the right plan,” he said. “He’s relentless in terms of his sense of urgency and his expectations for all of the teams. I’m excited about the future and where we’re headed.”
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