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New Ford Models: Ford Fights Back!

Written by Staff. Posted in Ford News

Published on May 03, 2016 with No Comments

Ford might be down, but it’s not out. Although the sweeping cuts of Mark Fields’s “Way Forward” plan likely mean the end of the road for the {{{Lincoln Town Car}}}, {{{Mercury Grand {{{Marquis}}}}}}, and Ford Crown Victoria (MT, August 2006), Ford’s product mavens are working on a number of key new models to take the Blue Oval into the 21st century.

The hugely successful Mustang is scheduled to get a major makeover in 2008, just in time to meet Chevy’s new Camaro and Dodge’s new Challenger head on in this century’s musclecar war. While the underpinnings will be largely carried over, we hear every exterior panel, apart from the roof center, will be changed. It’ll still look like a Mustang, say insiders, but will be less retro than the current car.

Before then, though, Ford will launch a 21st-century Boss Mustang. And like the storied Boss Mustangs of 1969, it’ll be powered by a rev-happy V-8 of about 5.0 liters. The new Boss engine is a alloy- block, naturally aspirated V-8 developed from the current modular engine architecture. Whisper out of Dearborn is it’s good for at least 390 horsepower, enough to tackle GM’s 400-horse LS2. The Boss interior will be stripped out to keep costs down. But the good news for drivers is the car will get the impressive Shelby GT500 suspension setup.

With sales of the Fusion still holding strong, Ford is moving fast to capitalize on its success by launching a coupe version. Expect modest sheetmetal and specification changes over the sedan to keep costs down; it’s a formula that’s worked well for Honda Accord and Toyota Camry. Engineering a coupe body for Fusion means there’ll be a Lincoln MKZ coupe, too, most likely powered by the new 3.5-liter V-6, though no word on whether the Mercury will be given a Milan coupe.

Ford’s ubiquitous D3 architecture (Volvo S80, Ford Five Hundred, Lincoln MKS) will be used to build a big-brother crossover companion to the soon-to-be-launched Edge. The new crossover’s design cues will follow themes shown on the Fairlane concept at the Detroit show a couple years back. The decision to build a bigger crossover has been driven by falling sales of the Explorer SUV, once Ford’s cash cow. The Explorer won’t be axed, however; sources say it’ll be refocused as a more off-road-capable vehicle, possibly using technology and expertise from Ford-owned Land Rover. In terms of small cars, Ford will converge the U.S.-market Focus with the more sophisticated European model for the next-generation model, and U.S. buyers also will be offered Focus variants such as the C-Max, a carlike compact minivan similar in concept to the strong-selling Mazda5. Ford also will challenge the Toyota Yaris and Honda Fit in the emerging B-car segment. Ford’s decision to shift global production of its B-car models to Mexico means it can bring these small, fuel-efficient cars to the U.S. market at a much lower cost. Insiders hint their B-car will rely on high style and character, like BMW’s Mini, to win over buyers from Toyota and Honda.

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