General Motors Company (GM), Ford Motor Company (F), Tesla Motors Inc (TSLA): Is This Auto Upstart Changing the Industry?

Meanwhile, Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) has also strengthened its financial profile, after leveraging its business significantly to survive during the downturn. Like General Motors Company (NYSE:GM), Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) was negatively impacted by weakness in its large European unit in 2012, leading to declining overall revenues and operating income. However, the company’s overall operating cash flow was strong once again, allowing Ford to internally fund its capital expenditures, which included new plants in China and India during the period.

Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) is also trying to offset Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA)’s surge by focusing on its small car segment with simplified manufacturing platforms and engines capable of utilizing multiple fuel sources. It is also investing heavily in emerging technologies, like hydrogen fuel cells, natural gas-powered engines, and electric vehicles. With governments around the world mandating vehicles powered by alternative fuels, Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) wants to hedge its bets by investing in diversified technologies until a winning power source emerges.

The bottom line

Silicon Valley has always been a source of big ideas and it finally turned its attention and capital to the auto sector. While Tesla is having its day in the sun, with a recent parabolic stock price move, the biggest winners may be the traditional automakers, due to their marketing machines and global network of factories. While Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) is a speculative play and Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) has stockholder control issues, investors should follow Warren Buffett’s lead and take a bite out of the new General Motors Company (NYSE:GM).

The article Is This Auto Upstart Changing the Industry? originally appeared on and is written by Robert Hanley.

Robert Hanley has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Ford, General Motors, and Tesla Motors . The Motley Fool owns shares of Ford and Tesla Motors. Robert is a member of The Motley Fool Blog Network — entries represent the personal opinion of the blogger and are not formally edited.

Copyright © 1995 – 2013 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.