In yet another example of China’s continual economic prominence, Ford has announced that it will import the Ford Focus from China to North America (U.S. Canada) in 2019.
As demand for small cars continues to decline in North America and elsewhere around the world, the American automaker is betting on the decision to save $1 billion in investment costs compared to the original plan to build the US / Canadian-market Focus in Mexico.
The abandonment of the Mexico plan coincided with President Trump’s threats to slap tariffs on imported vehicles, though then-CEO Mark Fields said the decision was solely based sales forecasts and not political pressures.
Ford global operations president Joe Hinrichs stated:
“Finding a more cost-effective way to deliver the next Focus program in North America is a better plan, allowing us to redeploy the money we save into areas of growth for the company – especially sport utilities, commercial vehicles, performance vehicles as well as mobility, autonomous vehicles and electrified vehicles.”
What do you make of Ford’s decision? Will you buy a made-in-China Ford Focus? Will you buy any car made in China? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
New, 2018 Ford Mustang Cobra Jet Is The Fastest, Most Powerful Cobra Jet Yet
The 2018 Mustang Cobra Jet celebrates the iconic drag strip race car’s 50th anniversary and is the fastest and most powerful Mustang Cobra Jet ever created.
Built by the Ford Performance Parts team, the latest Mustang Cobra Jet is powered by a supercharged 5.2L Coyote V8 that lets it complete the quarter-mile in the mid-8-second range at a top speed of 150 mph (241.4 km/h), which is faster than the Dodge Demon’s claimed quarter mile of 9.6 seconds at 140 mph (241.4 km/h).
Other performance highlights include a unique four-link rear suspension, a 9-inch solid rear axle from Strange Engineering, and a drag race-specific coil-over suspension with specially designed Weld Racing wheels with 50th anniversary badging
The interior is equipped with Racetech FIA seats and A NHRA-certified roll cage. There’s also an optional 50th-anniversary graphics package for those who want a bit more flair.
Only 68 units of the purpose-built drag racer will be made, each painted in either Race Red or Oxford White. Unfortunately, none of them will have VINs, meaning they can’t be registered to drive on the street.
Needless to say, performance has reached a whole new level of bonkers. Two American, V8 drag-racing monsters — the Mustang Cobra Jet and the Dodge Demon — going at it at the drag strip. Brace yourself, folks.
Ford Mustang Is World’s Best Selling Sports Coupe For 3 Consecutive Years
The Ford Mustang was the world’s best-selling sports coupe in 2017, marking the third year in a row that it has claimed the top spot.
Ford sold 125,809 units of its popular muscle car in more than 80 countries in 2017, with the United States accounting for most of those sales at 81,866 units.
With 7,125 registrations, the Mustang was also the best-selling sports coupe in China, while the most popular global configuration was the GT trim powered by the 5.0-liter V8 engine.
Ford sales analyst Erich Merkle stated:
“The world loves Ford Mustang. For years, Mustang was unobtainable for customers on most parts of the planet. It could only be found on TV or the internet, and now it rolls down streets from Beijing to São Paulo.”
Ford also announced that the Mustang will participate in the NASCAR Monster Energy Cup Series — professional stock car racing’s top league — for the first time, starting with Daytona in February.
New, 2019 Ford Focus Arrives As Classier Sedan, Hatchback, CUV And Wagon
The all-new, fourth-generation Ford Focus arrives with a classier design, new engines, an improved chassis and Ford’s latest CoPilot360 driver assistance suite. It is said to be more comfortable and fun to drive.
Available as a hatchback, sedan, “Active” crossover and / or wagon depending on the region, the global Focus has been completely revamped and thoroughly-improved inside and out. It is Ford’s first vehicles to be derived from the company’s new product development process, which uses human-centered design to deliver uniquely tailored model variants that still benefit from a common modular platform architecture.
A longer hood with a cab-rearward interior and longer wheelbase help make the new Focus look larger on the road and deliver more interior room without changing the actual exterior dimensions. Its more sculpted and upscale-looking exterior is also more aerodynamic.
The instrument panel positioning has been optimized for getting in and out of the Focus, while an electric parking brake and rotary gear shift dial frees up more space and provide easier access to bins and cup holders.
There is a host of new convenience and safety tech, including the Ford CoPilot360 driver assist features, adaptive cruise control, adaptive front lighting, active park assist and evasive steering assist, as well as FordPass Connect WiFi connectivity, wireless charging for your phone, and SYNC 3 infotainment system with an available 8 inch touchscreen.
Ford’s engineers revamped the chassis and suspension with a 20 percent improvement in torsional rigidity, a electric power steering system that provides a more engaging steering feel, and Drive Mode Technology with three drive modes: Normal, Sport and Eco modes. The revised gasoline and diesel EcoBoost engines, which are presumably more fuel-efficient, are mated to a new eight-speed automatic transmission.
All body-styles of the new Ford Focus — hatchback, sedan, wagon and crossover — will be available in Europe, but North America will likely only get the hatchback, sedan and possibly the “Active” crossover.