Ford is banking on a surge of exciting new global vehicles to drive profitable growth in Europe. @Ford Online spoke to Barb Samardzich, vice president, Product Development, Ford of Europe, about some of the cars that took centre stage at last week’s Go Further event in Amsterdam
(Q) Barb, how would you sum up the Ford product news announced at Go Further?
(A) Unprecedented! We announced so many new products and such a huge portfolio We revealed that over the next five years we will have 15 global vehicles here in Europe . We’re demonstrating that through One Ford we are able to deliver more product, better and faster to all regions of the world. Another key message is that we recognise how important product is to help drive our recovery in Europe. We’ll be well poised and ready, with terrific product, when the economy does start to turn around.
(Q) New Fiesta made its debut at Go Further. What’s different?
(A) We’ve introduced our latest Ford design language with changes to the front and rear. Fiesta maintains everything that makes a Fiesta great. It looks fast when its standing still, it’s got beautiful design language, but we’ve modernised it to our latest Ford-branded DNA look. This takes Fiesta to the next level in terms of a terrifically styled, fast-looking, beautiful vehicle.
(Q) You also took the wraps of new Mondeo in Amsterdam. Why will customers like this vehicle?
(A) With new Mondeo we’re launching all kinds of new features and technologies like our SYNC system with MyFord Touch. Mondeo is also a platform for some first in Europe technologies like rear inflatable seatbelts. The thing that really stands out, however, the first time you see this vehicle is the styling. It is an absolutely gorgeous product. As we researched this product globally, we had the best market research results and the best feedback from our customers that we’ve ever had. Everyone sees it universally as an absolutely stunning, premium-looking vehicle.
(Q)The announcement that Mustang is coming to Europe is generating a massive buzz. Will Ford build a standalone European version?
Without giving too much away, the next generation Mustang will not only be everything that American consumers expect and love from this iconic vehicle, it is also being designed so that European customers get everything they would love and want from that same vehicle. I don’t think that either side will see any kind of compromise. I think it’s going to be an absolutely fantastic vehicle, designed to satisfy all current and future customers on both continents.
* For the full interview see the October edition of @Ford Europe Magazine - coming soon.
Click on this link to access video coverage of this important event.