Ford Removes CD Players from Upcoming 2018 Vehicles

Ford Removes the CD Player From Upcoming 2018 Vehicles

Abhishek Baxl (CC by 2.0)

With Ford, Toyota, and Honda now building vehicles without the tradition CD player, will other automakers follow suit? Do automakers now consider the physical format dead?

Ford will build their 2018 EcoSport without a CD player for the first time in 25 years.  NPR, who first broke the news, cites the immense popularity of both video and audio streaming among younger consumers.  Time and time again, new studies point that these consumers prefer subscription services over traditional formats like the CD.

CD sales are falling in Western countries, whereas in the East, CD sales are booming.  So, what will take the traditional CD player’s place?

The 2018 Ford EcoSport will feature a touchscreen streaming console.  Passengers and drivers will have access to streaming services through Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.  The console will also include SiriusXM, multiple USB ports, and power outlets.

For those who use multiple devices, the EcoSport will include a storage bin.

NPR also reports that Ford will introduce Live TV to the 2018 Expedition.

Then, there’s the audio component.  Ford recently teamed up with Bang & Olufsen, announcing their partnership in a September 2016 press release. The  B&O Play Premium Audio System will take advantage of Harman technologies to deliver “a richer, more engaging listening experience.”  The automaker will also bundle the B&O Play Premium Audio System in the EcoSport and Expedition.

Speaking on the partnership, Raj Nair, Ford’s executive vice president, product development, and chief financial officer, said,

“Customers tell us they value consistent, high-quality audio experiences, and our collaboration with Harman is helping provide that.  This is just one of the ways we are creating richer, more engaging in-vehicle experiences for customers.”

The decision to remove CD players from vehicles isn’t revolutionary.  2016 Toyota Scion and Honda Civic models didn’t feature CD players. Instead, Toyota and Honda prominently featured touch screens designed for streaming.

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So, with Ford now manufacturing CD-less vehicles, do automakers consider the format dead?

Not quite.  Chicago Tribune music critic Greg Kot told NPR,

“Because cars don’t have CD ports anymore doesn’t mean that the CD is going to go away.  There’s still value in those CDs. There’s still a reason to hold on to that collection.  At least for me there is.  I’ll always own a CD player just in the same way that I will always own a turntable.”

NPR’s Sonari Glinton added,

“When you talk to car executives, they see the future of self-driving cars as these mobile entertainment pods with whatever entertainment you want.  So CDs, maybe even 8-tracks, even streaming Tiny Desk Concerts.”

38 Responses

  1. Avatar
    Anonymous

    My personal experience… I haven’t used a CD player in a car in years. I only purchase a CD if the music isn’t available as a download or streaming. When I do, I use that CD as a one time delivery mechanism to copy the music into my computer and Spotify playlist, which then gets transferred to my phone. I then listen to Spotify on my phone in the car via bluetooth. If I want to listen to the full album from beginning to end, I can. If I want to add 2-3 songs from the album into a 300+ song playlist and shuffle it, I can do that too.

    I wouldn’t go as far as to say the format is dead. Some people find value in music that is tangible in some way. And that’s perfectly fine. Though when I purchase music that’s not yet available on Spotify (which I would do far more often if labels get their heads out of their asses and window their new releases), I generally prefer digital downloads from iTunes or Amazon as opposed to a CD. It’s just more convenient, and convenience is king, at least for me.

    To each their own, of course.

    Reply
  2. Avatar
    Rick Shaw

    Fuck Ford. Despite dropping sales of physical goods, there is still a high percentage of CD ownership. This is an attempt to get consumers to pay for music they already own by way of paid subscription services and/or data plans.

    Some people might like this, while others may view it as a limitation of choice.

    I’m in the market for a new car. Ford has made my decision easier. No Ford.

    Reply
      • Avatar
        Robert A. Baker.

        Looking for a new SUV , but if no CD player it won’t be in my garage

        Reply
  3. Avatar
    music stowaway

    Now let’s all get serious here… hardly anyone buys CDs any more.. I haven’t
    purchased a CD album in years apart from a Jean-Michel Jarre collaboration album on a gift card a couple of years ago (and was disappointed with it and never played it more than once..). When did You last buy a audio CD album? I bet not in a long time..

    I remember the days when I used to buy 12″ records, 7″/12″ singles and CDs pretty well every week.. I was a big fan of CD singles.. but they went by the way side too..

    Now everyone listens to music on their laptops, tablets or smartphones or
    bluetooth in their cars on over their TV’s.

    Japan, South Korea, Germany are the main markets that I am aware of that still
    seem to have a market for these silvery shiny discs.

    Reply
    • Avatar
      curtis

      ford has made a big mistake and has let down a lot of people.. we still have hundreds of cds to play.. we dont want to have to record these onto flash drives etc.

      Reply
    • Avatar
      LindaE

      Yeah, but I’d like to listen to the CD’s I already have. Now I can’t, since buying a new Focus.

      Reply
  4. Avatar
    Dave

    They just trying to get u to pay for everything, I like physical CD’s and I occasionally steam also, there is room for both. Our society just keeps on paying for convenience and reduced quality. Long live capitalism. The power of the few control the destiny of many.

    Reply
  5. Avatar
    Wezyr

    Don’t make me laugh. I bought that month around 20 of CDs. Car without CD? I would buy different model. In Poland physical are very strong (more that 70%).

    Reply
  6. Avatar
    paul

    I guess the auto industry thinks senior citizens are something that should be push aside by technology like we’re a bunch of old 8 tracks. I think I’ll get aarpp to make a big push to let people know what the car makers think of it’s older generation. I guess you can always put your old cds around the house for coasters.

    Reply
  7. Avatar
    V8

    I listen to a lot of books on cd’s back and forth to work. Am I really supposed to download a 12-15 cd book to my phone (that has limited space to begin with) every time I want to listen to a new book? Call me old school, but it’s so much easier and less time consuming to just pick up the book on cd’s from the library and pop them into my car. Not anymore with a Ford. Too bad.

    Reply
    • Avatar
      Anonymous

      Glad I saw your post. I am in the market for a new pickup truck. I listen to books on CD (borrowed from the library) everything I drive. I have been locked in on a new Ford F-150. This will definitely alter my vehicle selection.

      Reply
  8. Avatar
    Colette

    Just in the process of buying a new ford. Have just found out there is no c d player in it. Not at all happy about it as I don’t stream music but listen to my c ds
    in the car all the time. I think when purchaseing a new car a c d player should be in it. If I had been told before the purchase ford would have lost the sale. Not everyone is technochally savvy.

    Reply
  9. Avatar
    Colette

    Just in the process of purchasing a new Ford Fiesta car and have just found out there is no c d player in it. I am not very pleased about that because I don’t stream music but play my c ds all the time. Not everyone is technically savvy. It costs a lot of money for a car and you should be able to play the music the way you always have. If you want to. Had I been told about this before the sale I would have gone to another manufacturer.

    Reply
  10. Avatar
    Dave

    Also just found out by luck ford has no CDs pissed last Ford they should at least offer it if you want one

    Reply
  11. Avatar
    Nick

    Got my ford and found out it had no CD player in it. Very disappointed that they discontinued it. Ford should reconsider their decision and start putting them back in.

    Reply
  12. Avatar
    David

    I just bought a new Ford Escape and found out there are is no CD player. While I dont use CDs very often I do on occasion like to listen to them. I get Ford wants to go technology crazy but there are a lot more people that still listen to CDs than they think. Bad move on their part. They are blind to the consumer now and only care about ways to make their vehicles more expensive and to make them more money

    Reply
  13. Avatar
    Peter

    Just spent over £18,000 on a 2019 ford fiesta titanium. Not happy after realising that the cd player was absent

    Reply
    • Avatar
      LindaE

      I just bought a Focus yesterday. Today while driving to the store, I realized – no CD player. Not happy at all. Now I have no way of listening to my CD’s.

      Reply
  14. Avatar
    Daniel

    Just bought new fiesta titanium fantastic music system sub woofer in boot with premium B and O music system.My only problem nowhere to play my cds.wish they would have told me before I bought car

    Reply
  15. Avatar
    Rosie

    I agree with the convenience remark…This society is all about quantity vs quality. The files which are compressed to fit scores of CDs onto a thumb drive lose a lot of quality.
    My current car has a 5-CD player and an Aux port to plug in my phone. I cant remember how many cables I’ve had to buy! They don’t last long. Thumb drives don’t last very long either…Also anyone who’s not a tekkie won’t be making a playlist of balanced audio quality — not to the degree of a professionally created CD.

    Reply
  16. Avatar
    Gordon Schilter [email protected]

    I for one will not consider any Manufacturer that does not have a
    CD player as standard equipment in their vehicles. I am due for a trade
    come the 2020 cars and there are still some outfits that have CD players.
    I will search them out and deal with them.

    Reply
  17. Avatar
    C.

    I love my 2009 Ford Explorer AND I love to read. Since I do a lot of driving I get lots of CD audio books from my local library to listen during my long drives. Now that I’m in the market for a new car, sadly, it won’t be a Ford Explorer.

    Reply
  18. Avatar
    jrix

    Is there a CD player retrofit for my new Ford Escape? The car comes with a USB port. I like listening to audio books in the car.

    Reply
  19. Avatar
    Billy

    i get that cd sales are down in places, but i still like and buy them. i get that not everyone wants a cd player in their vehicle, but then again not everyone wants Sirrius and/or 20 inch wheels on their truck either, but the OPTION to have those things is still there.
    maybe they dont want to put a cd player in every vehicle, which is fine, but if i want one added it should be an option. i was about to buy a new Raptor, but no factory cd option exists … i will not buy a new truck without one .. so onward and upward

    Reply
  20. Avatar
    William

    Ford Dropped The Ball When They Decided NOT To Put CD Players In Their New Cars. I Have About 700 CD’s And Now I Can’t Listen To Them. Bad Mistake Ford.

    Reply
  21. Avatar
    Vick

    I bought a 2019 f 350 got half way home started to but a cd in no cd player if I would have know it didn’t have one I would have not bought it, should have keep my 2018 pissed me off, that was not a smart move on fords part, need to fire the genius that come up with that ideal

    Reply
  22. Avatar
    John H. Ristine

    What vehicle is comparable to a 2019 Ford Escape Titanium that has a CD player?

    Reply
  23. Avatar
    John H. Ristine

    The Universal CD-USB Player One and its variations look nice and fit into the console of a 2019 Ford Escape, however they doesn’t perform well and whole tracks go missing so that four out of six tracks cannot be played. What brand of player should I buy. I’m an audiophile and I’m not interested in Bluetooth or thumb drives, and I’m not interested in what is popular today. Cost is not a concern.

    Reply
  24. Avatar
    Lorraine

    I want my CD player ! My new 2019 Expedition had to bundle a CD player with DVD pkayer!!
    I just wanted a CD player. So now I’m left with having to record every thing on flash drives! Now I have to go after market and install a CD player
    I’m an older adult and dont want to pay for streaming ect.
    I just want to oop in a CD and drive!

    Reply
  25. Avatar
    Anita Renn

    I am looking at the new Ford Expedition Platinum it don’t have a CD player in it ether and I wonder it you could hook one of those CD changer you put in your trunk

    Reply
  26. Avatar
    Nick

    73 years old. Own hundreds of CD’s Bought new Limited F 150. Loaded. Fourth 150 in a row. No player now have to find portable with skip protection that will sync. Not happy.

    Reply
    • Avatar
      Raul

      Have you found a portable cd player that will work? I bought a 2019 F250 and so far, I have tried two different cd players and they don’t work with USB or Blue tooth. Very frustrated!

      Reply
  27. Avatar
    Tristan

    I listen to rare and local bluegrass music. Only available in CD format. My new Ford F150 doesn’t have a cd player, inconvenienced.

    Reply
  28. Avatar
    Cindy

    Ford. Please make this a option rather than a requirement. I love using my CD player. Just like you can purchase a automatice vs. standard; leather vs. cloth or sunroof vs no sun roof. This should have been a option, not a complete removal.

    Reply
  29. Avatar
    Louise

    Was going to by the 2020 Ford Escape. When I found out it does not have a CD player. Decided to not purchase. It was a deal breaker for me. WTH

    Reply

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