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No More Retro as Mustang Prepares to Turn 50

New pony car reportedly will echo styling of Evos concept as it goes global.

by on Apr.16, 2012

Are you the 50th anniversary Mustang? A rendering by artist Sean Smith blends classic pony car cues with Ford's Evos concept. Used with permission of PopularHotRodding.com.

Has retro finally run its course?  Much like Hollywood studios, automakers like to bet on sure things, and showrooms have plenty of examples of how everything old can become new again, like the latest reincarnation of the Volkswagen Beetle, and the revival of the Chevrolet Camaro.

But Ford, which scored a huge hit with the old-is-new ’94 Mustang remake, and which subsequently created a studio specifically to develop more retro design opportunities, is apparently ready to step into the future.

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An all-new version of the original pony car – dubbed Mustang III by Ford insiders – will debut just in time for the nameplate’s 50th anniversary, in mid-2014.  And it will have a lot more in common with the widely acclaimed Evos concept that Ford unveiled last autumn than with the current Mustang.

And the changes will be far more than skin deep.  Reflecting both the desire to start marketing Mustang beyond North American shores, as well as the need to meet increasingly stringent fuel economy standards, insiders report the new model will offer an array of advanced high-mileage engines.

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Striking Evos Concept Will Reshape Face of Next Ford Fusion

by on Sep.13, 2011

Though not slated for production, the design cues of the Ford Evos Concept will reappear - starting with the 2013 Ford Fusion and Mondeo.

Officially, the new Ford Evos is nothing more than a concept vehicle.  The sporty gullwinged 4-door debuting today at the Frankfurt Motor Show today won’t be going into production.  But if it strikes your fancy, hang tight.  Many of the most appealing design cues will soon reappear at a nearby Ford showroom, senior company officials tell TheDetroitBureau.com, starting with a new model launching at the North American International Auto Show next January.

While Ford’s global design chief J Mays and other officials were cagey when pressed on the future of the new Evos “design language” – Mays hinting we might see more in four months or so – unimpeachable sources confirmed that this would, indeed, translate into a major launch at the Detroit Auto Show.  And the first new model to bring the Evos’ design cues to life will be the next-generation Ford Fusion – which be sold in most other markets as the Ford Mondeo.

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“We’re at the crossroads,” announced design director Mays during a sneak preview of the Evos, which is meant to be a significant evolution of Ford’s kinetic sculpture design language – which is itself most visible on new models like the Focus and Fiesta.  The goal is to come up with a look that is “more than just fun-to-drive,” said Mays, but which also provides a sense of the high technology  Ford is engineering into its products.

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Ford Now a Solid 2nd in Europe

Product-led revival.

by on Sep.12, 2011

Ford will introduce the new Evos Concept at the Frankfurt Motor Show.

The launch of a flood of new vehicles is paying off for Ford Motor Co. as its European turnaround efforts take hold. At the upcoming Frankfurt Motor Show the maker will reveal an assortment of new products and concept vehicles that should reveal whether it can continue to gain momentum.

The maker is earning a steady improvement in sales and market share in Europe – strong demand in  Germany for the Focus and C-MAX helping Ford increase sales 19.3% in August to 72,200 vehicles, while  its share rose 0.8 percentage points to 8.2% for the month, Ford’s best August share performance in Europe since 1998.

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Ford is now the number-two best-selling brand in Europe behind Volkswagen for the year-to-date. Through the first eight months of the year, Ford European sales have grown 2.8% to more than 1.05 million units.

“We had a very strong August compared with a year ago and compared with the rest of the industry, which is a testament to our strengthened product lineup,” said Stephen Odell, Ford of Europe’s chairman and CEO, on the eve of Ford’s IAA Frankfurt Motor Show media preview.

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Hatchbacks are Hot at Ford

Evos Concept suggests more coming, product chief Kuzak hints.

by on Sep.06, 2011

The face -- and backend -- of the future for Ford? The Evos Concept suggests even more hatchbacks are in the pipeline.

Hatchbacks are hot at Ford Motor Co. and the maker’s new Evos Concept – which officially debuts at the Frankfurt Motor Show next week – suggests that even more 3- and 5-door models are in the works, according to the maker’s head of global product planning.

Long considered unacceptable to U.S. motorists, hatchbacks are gaining ground fast with younger buyers and influencing even older motorists to take another look.  That convinced Ford to go with a 5-door design for the Evos Concept which introduces a new look that “will become increasingly familiar” to the company’s customers around the world,” said product czar Derrick Kuzak.

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“The (hatchback) body style is becoming increasingly popular worldwide and especially in North America,” Kuzak told TheDetroitBureau.com, in sharp contrast with years past.

Where hatchbacks were offered on past-generation Ford products sold in the U.S., said the product chief, they accounted for perhaps 20% of total sales.  Now, Kuzak noted, “It’s just the opposite,” hatchbacks generating 60 to 70% of demand for models like the 2012 Ford Focus and 2011 Ford Fiesta.

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First Look: Ford Evos Concept

Ford puts on a new face.

by on Aug.31, 2011

Ford will introduce the new Evos Concept at the Frankfurt Motor Show.

Automotive journalists may hate the phrase “design language” due to its prevalence in the industry, but there’s a reason so many designers, executives, and PR people use it. Most automakers are looking to create a unified theme throughout their brand, hence the use of “design” as a “language.” Ford is no different – and the new Evos Concept shows that the maker is switching dialects.

Take a peek at Ford’s consumer Web site and look at all the similarities between the company’s vehicles, particularly those introduced or redesigned in the past few years. Or think for a second about the company’s “One Ford” mission, which aims to streamline product variation across global markets, thus reducing costs.

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The Evos Concept will introduce Ford’s newest design language at the upcoming Frankfurt Motor Show. The name, the maker confirms, suggests this is an evolutionary, rather than revolutionary shift.  But the impact, if the show car is any indication, will still be significant.

The Evos concept looks like a two-door sports coupe but offers four gull-wing doors. While those doors and other high-zoot concept features likely won’t see production (more on that in a bit), and it’s unclear if the Evos itself will ever roll down an assembly line, the takeaway here is that the concept reveals the basic design cues that most Ford vehicles across the globe will share in the coming years.

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