Ford is ready to turn to the iconic Mustang in a bid to reverse its dwindling profits and shrinking market share — and that means expanding the brand beyond US-only coupés and into a full range of models, including a saloon like the one previewed in our artist's impression, to be sold across the world. Ford executives have devised a bold strategy to take Mustang mainstream.
Saloon and estate variants are likely to join the traditional coupé in the sixth-generation line-up due to hit US showrooms in 2011, according to high-ranking sources. And Ford’s Australian operation — which has recently ramped up its R&D division — is likely to provide the hardware.
Launched in 1964, the Mustang was conceived as an affordable coupé and has remained that way for over 42 years. But Ford is desperate to generate domestic sales against a backdrop of increasing domestic and foreign competition. So it has turned to the Mustang’s popularity to lead a product revival.
Autocar understands Ford’s revitalised Australian off-shoot is set to play a central role in the proposed program. It will develop a new global rear-wheel-drive platform which future Mustangs and other vital Ford models, including various Lincolns, will use after 2010. A Lincoln concept, based on a stretched four-door Mustang platform, will be shown at the Detroit motor show in January.
The move mirrors that of Australian rival Holden, which developed parent company General Motors’ new Zeta platform and launched it under the VE Commodore.