New boss to re­fresh Ford

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Paul Gover -

MARIN Burela is looking like the breath of fresh air who clears the storm clouds over Broad­mead­ows. Talk­ing to the newly ap­pointed pres­i­dent of Ford Aus­tralia last week as he spoke en­thu­si­as­ti­cally about the new Ford Ka and Fi­esta at the Paris Mo­tor Show, it was ob­vi­ous he is pas­sion­ate about cars. And his com­pany.

Burela could be the ‘‘car guy’’ the com­pany has needed for Aus­tralia — some­one who un­der­stands what peo­ple want in 21st-cen­tury motoring, and how to match their needs with Ford’s prod­ucts.

‘‘We have great prod­ucts,’’ Burela says, and he is not just talk­ing about Fal­con and Ter­ri­tory.

He led the new Fi­esta and Ka into pro­duc­tion and can see what they could bring to the lo­cal line-up. And he says much the same about the Kuga all-wheel drive.

He is just as en­thu­si­as­tic as he speaks to the mem­bers of the board of Vis­teon, one of the world’s largest com­po­nent com­pa­nies, about the changes at Ford and the op­por­tu­ni­ties. But he sounds a warn­ing about large cars. ‘‘We’ve seen a seis­mic shift. Do we think the change is per­ma­nent? Yes, we do.’’

That has im­pli­ca­tions for Aus­tralia, but Ford is com­mit­ted to a lo­cal man­u­fac­tur­ing plan. The com­pact Fo­cus and Burela ar­rive this week and there’s plenty to see, as­sess and do.

Small is beau­ti­ful: new boss Marin Burela over­saw the pro­duc­tion of the Ford Ka.

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