Why Ford Is Unhitching Hertz

By Kathleen Kerwin

It looks like Ford Motor (F) is getting serious about regaining traction. Its announcement June 13 that it plans to spin off part of its wholly owned Hertz car-rental subsidiary in an initial public offering is only the first act in the auto maker's efforts to build up its balance sheet and win back disenchanted investors.

Though the Securities & Exchange Commission filing is for a nominal $100 million in Hertz shares, Ford says it will eventually sell its entire Hertz stake. Analysts and investment bankers say the world's largest car-rental company could fetch as much as $6 b

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