Ford moves towards a global Focus
THE next-generation Ford Focus, revealed in the Irish Independent yesterday, will be a real global car with 80pc of the new motor common in all markets across the world.
But you can expect some tweaks and tugs to its looks, suspension set-up and other areas to fit in better with 'local' tastes and preferences. for example, Europeans tend to prefer a much stiffer and sharper suspension than Americans.
Ford here can't say the pictures from the Detroit Motor show represent exactly what the new 'Irish' Focus will look like, but my guess is they are not a million miles off.
The car will go in to production simultaneously across the world with first new models reaching here in the first quarter of 2011.
As many as 10 new models will be built on the new global C-segment platform. This replaces three platforms that are in use across the globe at the moment.
Ford estimates that by 2012, the new platform will form the basis of two million vehicles. That means fast inclusion of new technologies.
The company's global product development vice president Derrick Kuzak described the Focus as their "C-segment flagship" which has "technology you don't expect in a C-car".
They are making a big play of materials and interior quietness and say the scale of scope and production makes all that possible.
The company expects to double sales in the segment globally, from one million in 2008 to more than two million.
The new Focus is expected to be sold in 122 countries.
Cars in the Focus class account for nearly one-in-three purchases (30pc).