New compact Ford saloon concept, designed specifically for Chinese market, tipped for production
20 April 2013

The famous Ford Escort name has made a comeback at the Shanghai motor show as a new compact saloon concept that's strongly tipped to make production.

The compact saloon segment is worth more than five million unit sales per year in China. As such, it's a segment Ford is keen to extend its presence in with a model developed specifically for the local market.

And the Escort name has been chosen as it's one that holds resonance with Chinese buyers; old Escorts are regularly popping up at auctions to be bought by Chinese buyers, and classic models are regularly imported.

There are no plans for the name to make a comeback elsewhere however, including in the UK.

The styling of the concept is familiar from Ford's recent design language, with its large Aston Martin-style grille. The concept is described by Ford as offering Chinese customers, "a fun driving experience, high level of technology, exceptional roominess, uncompromised functionality and sophisticated design".

“This compact concept highlights the strength of our global One Ford approach to vehicle design, and represents how we can make use of our global design language to bring refined designs to attainable vehicles,” said Jim Farley, Ford's sales and marketing chief.

“Designed with the Chinese consumer in mind, the new Escort Concept has the potential to strengthen our product portfolio here in China as we take advantage of opportunities for diversification within the compact car segment.”

Read Steve Cropley's thoughts on the return of the Escort nameplate.

Click here for more Shanghai motor show 2013 news.

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Comments
12

20 April 2013

Some thought and effort has clearly gone into the design of that.

20 April 2013

I'm impressed that in this age of really interesting looking cars a mainstream manufacturer has the courage to produce something so incredibly dull and instantly forgettable.  If ever a car deserved to fail and disappear into obscurity it is this one.  Oh, and "Escort"?  They really have given up, haven't they?

20 April 2013

Really vulgar you mean. Or really dull as this is. There are very few vehicles which avoid these traps. (Reply to Martin_66)

21 April 2013

Flatus senex wrote:

Really vulgar you mean. Or really dull as this is. There are very few vehicles which avoid these traps. (Reply to Martin_66)

You need to head down to any of the following car dealerships these days to see something "really interesting" and not "really dull": Vauxhall, Peugeot, Hyundai, Mercedes, Alfa Romeo, Citroen, Ford, Jaguar, Infiniti, Kia, Lamborghini, Lexus, Nissan.  They are all coming out with some great new designs.

While they may not all be to your individual taste, you can't deny there is plenty out there to excite or, at least, "interest" the eyes.

This new "Escort" though, is incredibly dull, and clearly designed for the chinese market.  They wouldn't even dare to sell it in Britain.

22 April 2013

martin_66 wrote:

Flatus senex wrote:

Really vulgar you mean. Or really dull as this is. There are very few vehicles which avoid these traps. (Reply to Martin_66)

You need to head down to any of the following car dealerships these days to see something "really interesting" and not "really dull": Vauxhall, Peugeot, Hyundai, Mercedes, Alfa Romeo, Citroen, Ford, Jaguar, Infiniti, Kia, Lamborghini, Lexus, Nissan.  They are all coming out with some great new designs.

While they may not all be to your individual taste, you can't deny there is plenty out there to excite or, at least, "interest" the eyes.

This new "Escort" though, is incredibly dull, and clearly designed for the chinese market.  They wouldn't even dare to sell it in Britain.

I think you are actually right, although I would not include Ford, Nissan and Vauxhall in the list whilst no manufacturer is consistently imaginative.

20 April 2013

Escort saloon... surely thats an Orion? Biggrin

20 April 2013

What is the Escort based on or does it have its own platform? And a bit of an irony about the One Ford philosophy when it won't be a global car. As for looks, it looks dull but is far more attractive than the more striking but fussy and clumsy Focus, which is also on sale in China. As is the previous European model which is called the Classic Fox.

20 April 2013

Lewis Kingston wrote:

There are no plans for the name to make a comeback elsewhere however, including in the UK.

I very much doubt that they wouldn't take the opportunity to sell this in the other BRIC countries, and other emerging markets elsewhere around the world.

It looks ok, for what it is: Basic transportation, like a Dacia Logan, or a Skoda Rapid. I actually like the front end treatment better than i do the Focus.

20 April 2013

To my eyes it's a well proportioned and smartly styled saloon free of the fussy detailing of the Focus. It doesn't push any boundaries, but few four door saloons ever do. All they need to do is add hatchback and estate variants and it would probably sell quite well over here.

20 April 2013

When you look at what some of the Chinese home manufacturers produce, I'd say the new Escort will sell well to those wanting a straightforward car. VW produce loads of Polo/Jetta/Passat spin-off models in China and I'm sure Ford will capture some of VW's clients.

We don't all want the latest hi-tec machinery. Remember the Anglia/Prefect/Popular and the Escort / Popular in their day - back to the future ??

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