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Old 03-02-2007, 10:20 AM   #1
NYCshopper
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Default New Ford subcompact coming to U.S. (based on Mazda 2)

New Ford subcompact coming to U.S. (based on Mazda 2)

http://detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/art...O01/703010381/



Quote:
New subcompact coming to U.S.

DEARBORN -- Ford Motor Co. revealed to employees Wednesday that it is developing a long-awaited new subcompact car for the United States and other markets that will be based on the new Mazda2.

Ford Americas President Mark Fields told employees about the new car during his weekly Webcast. Unlike its major competitors, Ford does not offer a subcompact car for the U.S. market. Small, gas-sipping vehicles such as Chevrolet Aveo, Toyota Yaris and Honda Fit have become more important as automakers try to reach younger buyers and gas prices remain volatile.

A Ford spokeswoman declined to comment on the internal announcement.

The news comes as Ford CEO Alan Mulally is in Japan this week meeting with executives of Mazda Motor Corp., which is controlled by Ford.

"I fully expect the deep ties between Ford and Mazda to extend into the future and become even stronger," Mulally said in news release earlier this week.

As The Detroit News first reported in November, Mazda engineered a new subcompact vehicle platform for the Mazda2 that also will be the basis for the next-generation Ford subcompact in Europe and the first Ford subcompact sold in America since 1997.

The Mazda2 will be unveiled next week at the Geneva motor show.

Analyst Jim Hall of AutoPacific Inc. in Southfield, who has seen the Mazda2, said it should provide a solid foundation for the Ford subcompact.

"It's one of those small cars that looks more expensive than it probably it is," Hall said. "That's something you really want in small cars."

Fields said Wednesday that work on the Ford version is already under way, with Ford of Europe taking the lead. He said the Blue Oval model will be sold in Europe, Asia, South America and North America, but stressed that the subcompact is not a "world car." Instead, the vehicle will be tailored to meet the unique needs of each market.

Semantics aside, Hall said the new model will be Ford's "global B-car," referring to the industry designation for such small, fuel-efficient vehicles.

"It's the best strategy. Doing a global B-car is really smart, because it will be a low-volume car in the United States and you really need big volumes on a vehicle like this to keep costs down," he said. "In the U.S., price and fuel economy will be the predominant factors."

While Fields gave no time frame for the car's arrival in U.S. showrooms, Hall predicted it will probably arrive in showrooms in two years.

A Ford source familiar with the project said the company plans to build the car in Brazil, but said that may change. Ford had planned to expand one of its Mexican plants to accommodate the new model, but can no longer afford such a major expense.

Ford is increasing relying on Mazda engineering to bolster its passenger car lineup.

Ford previously used the mid-sized Mazda6 vehicle architecture to develop the Ford Fusion and Lincoln MKZ sedans, and the Ford Edge and Lincoln MKX crossovers.


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Old 03-02-2007, 12:50 PM   #2
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How about giving us a better Focus before you start crapping every new model you bring over.... yeah.. that's a start, Ford!!!
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Old 03-02-2007, 01:06 PM   #3
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Fiesta? i hope so the sport fiesta is the crap
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Old 03-02-2007, 01:45 PM   #4
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looks like the Ka from GT
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Old 03-02-2007, 02:31 PM   #5
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Ford will likely spend a billion or so designing a small car that 'meets Americas tastes' when they could have saved a mint just building the Fiesta.
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Old 03-02-2007, 05:31 PM   #6
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Quote:
"In the U.S., price and fuel economy will be the predominant factors."
From the sounds of it, they're going to take a euro Fiesta shell and then let the accountants and US suspension specialists loose on it. Because, you know, that has been such a winning strategy for them in the past. You just know the first thing they'll do is remove any good characteristics it may have had.

So like always, if you want the good one, buy the Mazda...
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Old 03-02-2007, 05:41 PM   #7
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Will it be named Pinto
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Old 03-02-2007, 07:40 PM   #8
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Why doesn't Ford just rebadge the damn Mazda 2?!? (and I don't even mean sharing a platform, I mean actually the same car but different bumper and trimm pieces)

I swear, they do that with ALL of their other crappy cars - like the Fusion/Milan and Taurus/Sable/500/whatever and countless others. Why not do it with an actuallly NICE design like the 2?

All I can say, is that it better NOT look anything like a shrunken-down:
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Old 03-03-2007, 08:07 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hazdaz View Post
I swear, they do that with ALL of their other crappy cars - like the Fusion/Milan and Taurus/Sable/500/whatever and countless others. Why not do it with an actuallly NICE design like the 2?
Yeah, 'cause everybody is selling everything else to buy a Mazda 6 (fusion base), or a Volvo S80 (500/Taurus base). In fact, Honda is declaring bankruptcy and Toyota apologized profusely for trying to sell thier bland, Bland, BLAND cars as competition to the obviously superior Mazda products.

Oh wait, 90 percent of americans buy & drive BLAND CARS. And they LIKE it.

Tom
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Old 03-05-2007, 05:18 PM   #10
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Article states that this sub-compact is destined for South America, but could it be the rebadged Mazda2 for US Market?



http://www.popularmechanics.com/blog...s/4213197.html



Quote:
Spy Report: Ford's Not-So-Mysterious Checkered 4-Door

What is Ford thinking? A new small car? The photos below at right are clear evidence of a small Ford prototype sedan all dressed up in a checkered paint job. The clever black-and-white pattern all but hides the fact that the vehicle is a four-door model. In fact, if it were not for the two-bar horizontal grille inserts, we couldn’t be certain it really is a Ford (that and the Dearborn, Mich., location of the car—deep in Ford country.) A Ford official declined to identify the baby Ford, but hinted that it is a version of a product soon to be unveiled for South American markets. Still, with Ford looking for a vehicle to compete in the U. S. market with smaller types like Scion, Aveo and Versa, this looks like a good bet for production.


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