Currently reading: Ford Escort: Shanghai motor show 2013
New compact Ford saloon concept, designed specifically for Chinese market, tipped for production

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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Sulphur Man 22 April 2013

Rather tasteful

After the badly over-styled Focus, which looks overweight, this is a far more elegant and svelte offering. Almost upmarket.

I hope it's also dropped the awful button-festooned dashboards of the current Focus, arguably one of the worst dashboards in any current car. 

sirwiggum 22 April 2013

I actually prefer this shape

I actually prefer this shape to the Tortoise-profile of the Focus.

The short bootlid evokes memories of the mk3 Escort, possibly the mk2 too.

If they offered it as a liftback hatch and priced it accordingly, could sell in the UK.

HoChi 20 April 2013

It'll sell well

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 ??