Shang­hai hosts global de­but of Mus­tang

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - MOTORING -

Los An­ge­les and Barcelona.

“The One Ford plan pro­vided the op­por­tu­nity for Mus­tang to go global, and the car has a strong ap­peal and fan base all over the world.

“We see this as a way to show­case the most pas­sion­ate part of the Ford brand and how it re­sides not only in our per­for­mance ve­hi­cles but in all our ve­hi­cles, in­clud­ing the Fi­esta, the Fo­cus and Tran­sit vans,” he said.

How­ever, he told China Daily that it is too early to dis­cuss a spe­cific timetable for the Mus­tang’s of­fi­cial launch in the Chi­nese mar­ket.

“The Mus­tang will be launched in a stag­gered ca­dence around the world, with the first cars be­ing avail­able in the US in the fall of 2014, Europe in early 2015, China and the other Asia- Pa­cific mar­kets over the course of 2015,” he said.

Since en­ter­ing China nearly two decades ago, Ford has ex­panded its of­fer­ings and now has a do­mes­tic port­fo­lio of 12 pas­sen­ger and com­mer­cial ve­hi­cle mod­els. Most of these ve­hi­cles are in the medium and low-end seg­ments.

An­a­lysts have sug­gested that the US com­pany bring more high- end mod­els, in­clud­ing its lux­ury brand Lin­coln, to China to help pro­mote its brand im­age.

Dur­ing the de­but of the iconic Mus­tang, Ford an­nounced that its to­tal sales in China in the first 11 months of this year surged 51 per­cent from a year ear­lier to 840,975 units ow­ing to strong November sales, which grew 47 per­cent year-on-year. “We are well on track in the fast lane in China,” said John Lawler, head of Ford China.

“We will en­hance our suc­cess in the world’s largest au­to­mo­bile mar­ket by speed­ing up the of­fer­ing of mod­els from our whole lineup, from per­for­mance cars, SUVs, to com­mer­cial ve­hi­cles, to fur­ther sat­isfy our Chi­nese cus­tomers’ re­quire­ments.” This year, Ford has al­ready sold more than 350,000 units of the Fo­cus and al­most 30,000 of the Mon­deo. The SUV sales also sur­passed 158,000 units to date.

50-year leg­end

“The Ford Mus­tang in­spires pas­sion like no other car,” said Raj Nair, Ford group vice- pres­i­dent for global prod­uct devel­op­ment.

“The vis­ceral look, sound and per­for­mance of the Mus­tang res­onate with peo­ple, even if they’ve never driven one.

“Mus­tang is def­i­nitely more than just a car — it is the heart and soul of Ford.”

The Mus­tang’s im­pact goes well be­yond the 9 mil­lion­plus cars sold in its 50 years of con­tin­u­ous pro­duc­tion.

It has made thou­sands of ap­pear­ances in film, tele­vi­sion, mu­sic and video games, and is the world’s most-liked ve­hi­cle on Face­book. For the first time ever, Ford will bring the Mus­tang to cus­tomers in key parts of Europe and Asia.

“We crafted this car with the goal of creat­ing a con­tem­po­rary in­ter­pre­ta­tion of the Mus­tang, an Amer­i­can au­to­mo­tive icon that sym­bol­izes op­ti­mism and free­dom for mil­lions of peo­ple around the world,” said Jim Far­ley, Ford’s ex­ec­u­tive vicepres­i­dent for global mar­ket­ing, sales and ser­vice and Lin­coln.

April 17, 2014, marks the 50th an­niver­sary of the in­tro­duc­tion of the orig­i­nal Ford Mus­tang and each 2015 model cel­e­brates the mile­stone with a badge on the in­stru­ment panel that in­cludes the gal­lop­ing pony logo and the words “Mus­tang – Since 1964”.

The Mus­tang will con­tinue to be built in the United States at Flat Rock Assem­bly Plant.

“From day one, we knew if we were go­ing to build a new Mus­tang, we had to do it right,” said Dave Per­i­cak, chief en­gi­neer for the Ford Mus­tang.

“We built a new Mus­tang from the ground up that is quicker, bet­ter- look­ing, more re­fined and more ef­fi­cient, with­out los­ing any of the raw ap­peal that peo­ple have as­so­ci­ated with the Mus­tang for half a cen­tury.”

PRO­VIDED TO CHINA DAILY

From left to right: David Schoch, group vice-pres­i­dent and pres­i­dent of the Asia-Pa­cific re­gion at the Ford Mo­tor Co; John Lawler, head of Ford China, and Raj Nair, Ford group vice-pres­i­dent for global prod­uct devel­op­ment, at­tended the global de­but of its all-new Mus­tang in Shang­hai on Dec 5.

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