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Posts Tagged ‘2010 Mazda Miata’

Ford Planning Diesel for New Transit Van

Maker also putting emphasis on CNG and LPG.

by on Mar.28, 2012

Already popular in many parts of the world, the Ford Transit van will arrive in the U.S. in 2014.

Ford Motor Co. says it expected to boost the fuel economy of its large work vans by 25% when it migrates to an all-new design next year.  A key reason for what is a spectacular increase in a traditional staid segment is Ford’s decision to go with several alternative powertrain packages.

The European-designed Transit van will be offered with both a turbocharged EcoBoost powertrain, Ford officials say, but will also be available with a new high-mileage diesel option. That, plus other efficiencies designed into the all-new Ford Transit should yield an average mpg number about a quarter higher than the old Econoline model, also known as the E-Series.

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The Transit is the latest step in the maker’s migration to its so-called One Ford strategy.  The goal is to hold down costs – and deliver more content to consumers – by sharing product designs on a global basis.  In the past, the E-Series was offered in North America and a few other select markets, while Europe and most of the rest of the world shared the previous version of the Transit.

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Ford Shuffles Design Heads

Ian Callum takes over Americas, Peter Horbury goes to Volvo.

by on Apr.01, 2009

TK

The gregarious and decidedly "politically incorrect" Horbury now returns to Sweden and Volvo.

Faced with the sudden departure last week of design-head Steven Mattin from loss-making Volvo, “to pursue other opportunities,” Ford Motor Company is sending Peter Horbury, executive director Ford Americas design, back to Gothenburg, Sweden, as vice president of design. Moray Callum, currently director of design for cars, Ford Americas, will replace Horbury as executive director, Ford Americas design in Dearborn. Both positions are effective May 1. 

Horbury was Volvo’s design director in 1991, where he attempted to bring some more rounded shapes to the stolid and boxy Swedish brand, at a time when its safety marketing position was being successfully challenged by European and Japanese makers. The 1992 hybrid-electric ECC concept, with an extreme aerodynamic shape, was the first visible sign of his desire to move from the angular forms of the 850 model it was based on. However, it was not until 1997 that the influence of the gregarious and decidedly politically incorrect Horbury was felt in a meaningful way, when the first production cars appeared, the C70 and ’98 S80. Horbury rounded the look inside and out, and contributed the car-length shoulders still in use today. Volvo cars was acquired by Ford in 1998 for more than $6 billion and incorporated into its fledgling Premier Automotive Group.

In 2002, Horbury was appointed executive director responsible for studios of all the PAG brands — Jaguar, Land Rover, Volvo and Aston Martin. After moving to the United States in early 2004, Horbury developed a “new design DNA” for the Lincoln brand, initially expressed in the MKR Concept and evolving  into the MKT and Lincoln C Concept. Volvo is the only remaining brand of  the now failed PAG at Ford. Sales of the others during the last two years raised desperately needed cash. Volvo, too, is currently for sale and rumors of Chinese bidders abound.

“Peter is returning to Volvo at the perfect time to lead the design team in developing the next generation of Volvo products,” said Stephen Odell, president and CEO, Volvo Cars.  (more…)

First Look: 2010 Mazda Miata

by on Feb.13, 2009

2010 Mazda Miata: 20 years later

2010 Mazda Miata: 20 years later

“It was 20 years ago, today…” or so the Beatles might have been saying if they were in hand at the 2009 Chicago Auto Show to celebrate two decades of the Mazda Miata.

It’s hard to recall how much has changed since the first of those little roadsters rolled into the Windy City, for the 1989 Chicago Auto Show. The Berlin Wall had yet to fall. The first George Bush was in the White House. And as far as Conventional Wisdom was concerned, the 2-seat sports car was effectively dead

So, when Mazda pulled the wraps off the first Miata,” It was considered a fad,” and one not likely to gain much traction, says Mazda North America’s CEO, Jim O’Sullivan, who served as master of ceremonies for the launch of the 2010 Mazda Miata. And with 900,000 of the roadsters sold, over the last 20 years, O’Sullivan seemed confident the Miata will be around for a little longer.

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