By on April 22, 2013

One of the biggest changes implemented by Ford in the post-bailout area is the “One Ford” policy, which calls for an end to regional specialty products. While this has led to Ford’s mainstream lineup moving towards the European Fords that enthusiasts previously longed for, it also means that vehicles like the rear-drive Falcon will get the axe.

In this context, its curious that Ford appears to be launching a C-segment car made just for China. The need to establish a foothold in China presents enough of a case for Ford to deviate from their global product mission, but it still raises our interest given that iconic products like the Mustang are being adapted – some may even say watered down – for global consumption.

In any case, it turns out there’s a bit of a spat between Ford Australia and Ford’s Asia-Pacific divisions, with some claiming that the Escort is in fact a “global” car. The Escort was ostensibly designed with the Chinese market in mind. The rear seat is spacious (as Chinese consumers prefer) and the car is a sedan, rather than a hatchback, but is positioned below the Focus despite also being a C-segment car.

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71 Comments on “How Does The Ford Escort Fit With The “One Ford” Policy...”


  • avatar
    dwford

    Perhaps this forms the basis for a Lincoln c-spegment car in the US?

  • avatar
    86SN2001

    And while we’re at it, lets ask this:

    How does the F-150 fit into One Ford?
    How does the Super Duty fit into One Ford?
    How does the Edge/MKEdge fit into One Ford?
    How does the Flex/MKFlex fit into One Ford?
    How does the Expedition/MKExpedition fit into One Ford?
    How does the Explorer fit into One Ford?

    How does the global Ranger that we’re stupidly not getting fit into One Ford?

    The whole idea of One Ford is a massive joke. You cannot have the same vehicles for every market all over the world. It just doesn’t work.

    • 0 avatar
      mike978

      Was “One Ford” mean to cover every Ford? I wouldn`t have thought so, so vehicles like the F-150 are natural exceptions. Ford’s core car products – Fiesta, Focus, Fusion and Escape are “one For”.
      However they are hardly the first – Mazda have the same 2, 3, 5, 6, CX5, and MX5 across the world. They just didn`t label it “One Mazda”!

      • 0 avatar
        86SN2001

        “One Ford” inherently means every Ford. It’s not the “Mostly One Ford” plan, or the “Almost One Ford” plan.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          Should have been called “Dump the Premier Auto Group and turn Lincoln into Mercury” plan.

        • 0 avatar
          MBella

          I’m pretty sure the idea was to not develop the same car twice for two different markets like they used to. For example the Fusion or Mondeo, or The euro Focus and our Focus. Now they are the same car. It doesn’t mean that they can’t sell an F-150 here and nowhere else. It just means that if they decide to sell a half ton truck in Europe, it will be the same F-150.

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      How do trolls fit into the overall health of a commenting system?

    • 0 avatar
      CJinSD

      One Ford, but with our panel fits and attention to detail, no two are alike!

    • 0 avatar
      86SN2001_nonsense

      Hi everybody. It’s really important that we take any sound bite description of a business strategy literally. I’m serious! If we find even a few exceptions, then the whole thing is bunk, right! For real! I’m not even kidding you guys!

      • 0 avatar
        86SN2001

        Yeah! How dare anyone take what Ford says seriously? How dare anyone quote the company that said it. Who do they think they are?

      • 0 avatar
        mkirk

        Chevrolet’s must never move then since they are “like a rock”

        • 0 avatar
          86SN2001

          Haha, must be! But wait, Bob Seger said that, not the CEO of Chevy….so who knows what Mr. Nonsense will say about that.

          • 0 avatar
            mkirk

            Yes, I am aware of the authorship of the song, however since Chevy’s corporate leadership adopted the ditty as the slogan for their truck line and spent the next decade or so putting it in every commercial advertising such trucks…

            Additionally if Chevy was “The Heartbeat of America”, what does that say about the US since they went bankrupt.

            But I digress…As the former owner of an S-10 from the Seger era I will say they were nothing like a rock as a rock could likely out accelerate it and rocks generally do not break often unlike said S-10.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            Chevy (and GM’s) whole “Piston Slap” fiasco put and end to the “Like a Rock” campaign. On the street, another slogan was brewing… “LIKE A KNOCK”.

    • 0 avatar
      gsf12man

      I take it, then, that you’re angry and bitter that you, personally, will not be able to buy the new Ranger? I must agree with you, it looks like a great truck.

  • avatar
    TEXN3

    They should be selling the Escort in the US, instead of the Fiesta. A similiar sized car to the Focus at a much lower price. Focus is premium and Escort is basic (like a Versa).

    • 0 avatar
      CJinSD

      Aren’t 45% of Focuses sold into rental fleets? They might as well replace it with the Escort. The Focus is already dead weight on the retail side, or at least being outsold three to one by the segment’s retail leaders.

      • 0 avatar
        TEXN3

        I don’t know how your comment is relevant to the opinion I posted. I don’t get caught up in percentages and the like. However, one of my own criteria is that the car will have decent residual value if I decide, or need, to sell it within a decade.

        The only time that has happened, the Subaru Outback was finally a worthwhile purchase as it sold in 12 hours, for $2500 over KBB/Edmunds. Not to mention the absolution of a PITA vehicle.

        • 0 avatar
          CJinSD

          Focus isn’t premium if few people buy them new and the used car market will be flooded with low-content ex-rentals. They might as well go with a lower cost car that might be a better value for retail customers and fleet customers alike.

          • 0 avatar
            86SN2001_nonsense

            No, it’s 4.5% sold into fleets. Like you, I’m not sure and didn’t bother to check, so I’m probably right.

          • 0 avatar
            CJinSD

            https://www.google.com/search?q=Ford+Focus+fleet+percentage&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a

            Uh oh. What else are you wrong about?

          • 0 avatar
            86SN2001

            “Uh oh. What else are you wrong about?”

            Boom.

          • 0 avatar
            TEXN3

            I agree, I should have been more specific: the Focus COULD BE more premium and the Escort could be a base model. Of the Focii I see on the road, many are SEL and Titanium models. I believe those range from $20k-$25k. The SE is probably in the $15k-20k range. I don’t know, I don’t spend as much time googling stats to refute people’s opinions.

            I was thinking that Escort could be sold in North America (maybe even South America) as more basic transportation. A decent sized compact car without a bunch of gizmos and what not, something along the lines of what a compact car used to be considered as without stepping down to a really small car like a Fiesta or Sonic, or Yaris.

            I don’t have skin in this segment of the game, so I don’t really care as much as you must.

          • 0 avatar
            thornmark

            Ford continues to be the fleet leader this year too:
            http://www.autonews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20130415/RETAIL01/304159986/hyundai-kia-raises-fleet-sales-as-retail-sales-slide#axzz2QXEodJFv

    • 0 avatar
      Lorenzo

      With more back seat room and a conventional sedan profile, the Escort sounds like a better platform for premium treatment than loading the Focus with bells and whistles. In an earlier age, the Escort would have been a Mercury Comet or Lynx, and the Focus would have been cranked out like sausages.

    • 0 avatar
      ranwhenparked

      That would probably do more to kill the Focus than replace the Fiesta – see the Contour vs. Taurus experience.

  • avatar

    How Does The Ford Escort Fit With The “One Ford” Policy

    Does It Matter

    • 0 avatar
      SV

      Not really. Ford needs a budget offering for developing markets, like the Logan/301/C-Elysee/etc., whether or not it’s sold in the US or Europe is fairly immaterial.

      I wonder if this will replace the previous-gen Focus in China, which as I understand it made up the bulk of Focus sales there, or if it will be a still-cheaper alternative (VW sells about a hundred different C-segment lineups there so such redundancy wouldn’t be without precedent).

  • avatar
    cargogh

    Straighten this out, Derek. And while you’re at it tell them them about the Fiesta ST. I always opt for the 5-doors, but in the ST’s case, the 3-door we’re not getting looks amazingly better.

  • avatar
    jrmosery86

    How does the F150 fit into the one Ford policy?

    • 0 avatar
      TEXN3

      Ford said there would always be exceptions, most notably the F-series trucks.

    • 0 avatar
      redav

      I doubt there are multiple, different F-150s sold around the world. Thus, it *is* still one Ford. What they don’t want is two cars that are serve the same purpose, fill the same niche, but are different. The Escort/Focus may be what they wanted to avoid, but if the Escort is truly that much cheaper, the two may not be comparable at all, despite being similar in size.

  • avatar

    Ford needs this now rather than later. Speaking from my perch in the Southern Hemisphere I see Renault Logans, Nissan Versas, Fiat Grand Sienas, Chevy Cobalts sell and sell and sell. These cars have all wheelbases longer or a long as a Corolla, bigger trunks, smaller engines. Perfect for developing world families. The New Fiesta sedan is too small and too costly to compete. See what the above mentioned cars have done to sales of VW Polo sedans, Fiat Linea sedans, even Focus sedans. They just can’t compete. THe external design of cars like the Logan is improving (see new design), so is the internal (see Brazilian Chevy Cobalt). Then compare to space inside a Fiesta sedan. And all for a lower prize.

    I’ve long maintained that a whole complete One Ford can’t happen. The world is just too big. Ford is being smart not to let themselves into a corner over this. I think the is One Ford First World and a One Ford and a Half Developing World. Good for us as we will get the chance to get the One Ford cars plus some special cars just for ourselves.

  • avatar

    It’s a Focus variant. No biggie.

  • avatar
    burakvtec

    ford did not have never a essential design language in past. I talk for european side.(american side always cubic,rectangular cars yeah), every mondeo, focus/escort,ka etc are slighty different as design than previous models.they like now aston martin grill ,after 5 years maybe another brand grill. ford dont have still a characteristic even this brand is one of the oldest brand in automotive industry.strange…

  • avatar
    Hummer

    So… this means that there is twice as many “exceptions” to the policy, then there are inclusions?

    Massive waste of time to create a policy for your company that doesn’t even resonate.

    I look forward to the world mustang car, a platform is best layed out either for 8 or 4 cyclinder with the ability for either side to adapt to 6.
    Going to be hilarious seeing a 4 cyl in a pony car, back to the dark ages of the Foxbody 4cyl.

    • 0 avatar
      Muttley Alfa Barker

      “Going to be hilarious seeing a 4 cyl in a pony car, back to the dark ages of the Foxbody 4cyl.”

      Did you forget about the much-beloved 1984-86 Ford Mustang SVO? It had a 4 banger.

    • 0 avatar
      Dave M.

      I’m not sure you’re familiar with 4 cylinder output developments these past, oh, 10 years, especially with DI and boosting.

      How much power do you need? It’s like when Rolls Royce advertised on their output…”adequate”.

      • 0 avatar
        Hummer

        You can DI and boost a V8 as well, but then your talking sports car, which the Mustang is not, it is a muscle car.

        And this is where Ford gets spanked by the other two, by having such small displacement, you can upgrade a whole lot more to a 6.2 then a 5.0, which is not to say Ford hasn’t made great strides, but their becoming limited by the block size.

        And besides, who wants a whining high revving 4cyl, with tons of technology over a basic tried and true V8 that is capable of the same things with minimal input.

        • 0 avatar
          luvmyv8

          That’s what happened with the SVO. Granted it was a neat car and it did pack a mean punch, not to mention you got a very welcome standard feature with the SVO that couldn’t be had with any other Mustang; 4 wheel disc brakes.

          But what did it in was that a 5.0 GT was quite a bit less and just a bit faster, plus I prefer the exhaust tone of a V8 over a high revving 4… not to mention the torque too… most other people did too.

        • 0 avatar
          mkirk

          A Whooooole lot of folks who don’t remember the 1960′s and look at the hot hatches of the 90′s as the golden era of autos. Your precious “Muscle Car” demographic looks a lot Panther Buyers circa 1990.

          The Mustang is already the best handling of the bunch with it’s gerriatric rear suspension. A real rear end and a light weight motor could make a fun car. You can’t sell retro forever. Not like the v6 Mustang in it’s current form hasn’t been well received. In terms of long term sales making it good is key. Retro buyers get old and trade for Avalons. Good on Ford for trying to make the Stang good rather than just cool to a group of folks who aren’t getting any younger.

          • 0 avatar
            Hummer

            I don’t give a damn about retro, I want what I pay for, and when people sell a muscle car they expect said V8 performance, not a overpriced 4 cyl that is wheezing through the gears.
            If your so concerned about retro get the. Challenger, and put a carbed 360 in it.

          • 0 avatar
            cdakost

            If you want what you pay for then buy a V8. It isn’t like the 4 cylinder is going to be the only option.

      • 0 avatar
        mkirk

        Thought it was “sufficient”

  • avatar
    James2

    One Ford does not refer to the product lineup so much as it refers to one “Ford Motor Company”. Before Alan Mulally came, it was Ford North America, Ford South America, Ford of Europe and Ford Asia/Pacific. Each unit operated like they were separate companies. The idea was to integrate the units and, oh btw, produce cars that could sell globally with minimal changes.

    • 0 avatar
      Lorenzo

      GM used to be that way, with each brand a separate company. They all used the same frame and the same overall body and engine blocks, but each brand made them in their own plants and differentiated them. Back then, John DeLorean could take the Pontiac version of the corporate economy compact Tempest, drop a big V8 in it and call it the GTO. When they became “divisions”, that flexibility ended, and GM discovered badge engineering. If Ford isn’t careful, they’ll fall into the same trap, and have their Lincolns derided as “gussied-up Fords”!

  • avatar
    ranwhenparked

    I think the plan was to have all the mainstream models sold across all markets, but still allow some degree of localization when expressly required for business needs. North Americans still buy full-size sedans and pickup trucks; Europeans like their city cars; Indians need cheap, cheerful, and durable; the Chinese need cheap but status affirming.

    Ford knows the F-150 could never work in Europe, but they make way too much off of it in North America to ever dream of killing it in the name of One Ford. By the same token, they believe the Ka can’t sell in North America because it’s too small, but it would be asinine not to sell a city car in Europe.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      There’s still a matter of European tariffs so US cars and trucks absolutely have to be built in Europe. That’s 10% on cars 22% on trucks. Not that the F-150 would sell in the crazy numbers the US sees, but a small percentage would suffice. Europe is an audience approx 2X the size of the US market. Plus Europe’s Free Trade Agreement partners like Saudi Arabia, Turkey, South Africa, South Korea and many other.

  • avatar
    JaySeis

    What’s the alternative? A different ground up vehicle for every GM veep?

  • avatar
    MRF 95 T-Bird

    If Mercury was still around this could be their entry level model that would compete with the Buick Verano.

  • avatar
    wmba

    “One of the biggest changes implemented by Ford in the post-bailout area is the “One Ford” policy, which calls for an end to regional specialty products.”

    So say you, Mr. Kriendler. I am unable to find anything in Ford’s official policy that says this. And the One Ford Policy precedes the bailout era since it was announced in 2007.

    I think that this is the problem – autojournos have run off into far left field for the last six years making up what they think Ford is saying, rather than reading what Ford says One Ford means. Go on, have a google on One Ford Policy. It never mentions what you say at all.

    Hell they even make big diesel rigs in Brazil and Turkey. Hard to do that on an E250 chassis. No company is going to set its product mix in stone if it precludes them making money by standing on some principle, especially if they never said they would in the first place.

    I’m not that interested in Ford in the first place, and just believed what journalists wrote. Now I look and cannot find what the automotive press is dishing out as the truth.

    • 0 avatar
      corntrollio

      Agree with wmba and John Rosevear here. Here is the link from Ford’s website:

      http://corporate.ford.com/doc/one_ford.pdf

      Let’s save “What ‘One Ford’ means to me” for the campfire when we sing “Kumbaya” together.

      They already sell the 2nd gen Focus in China as the Ford Focus Classic, so selling it as the Escort with a re-style doesn’t seem much of a stretch. It’s quite obviously positioned below the 3rd gen Focus.

  • avatar
    pacificpom2

    So the “one Ford Policy” is really one of if it makes money in several markets, its one ford, if it doesn’t or only specific to one market, then it’s a niche product, still allowable under the one ford policy.
    So what is the “One Ford Policy”? Is it a common design theme, very evident in the euro and Australian fords. Is it a set of common engineering parts, witness the ecoboost 4 cyl engines from focus, mondeo, falcon. That, I think is the One Ford Policy, really one ford parts bin. and a RWD 4 door HiPo sedan just can’t be built from the common parts bin. So the Falcon dies along with it’s unique (for Ford) rear suspension and the design staff get placed into the global “parts designers” bin. So that Ford designs the next Escort Mondeo Taurus etc.. Not Ford Europe, Ford NA, Ford Australia or Ford Asia/Pacific. That’s the One Ford Policy.

  • avatar

    One Ford is about running the company as a single global entity, with all of the different regions and operations working from the same page of the same book. I don’t think there’s anything at all that rules out regional variants based on global platforms. (In fact, I suspect that Ford’s global product/platform strategy is going to look a lot more like VW’s before long… this might be an early sign of that.)

  • avatar
    cdakost

    One Ford is no different than GM making the Cruze and Malibu to be global cars. The Silverado/Sierra and Suburban and all of those still exist. It’s just that with Ford, they gave their global car policy a name. It is merely PART of their business plan.

  • avatar
    otaku

    I think a better question is whether Ford would consider selling a version of this Escort in the US. Perhaps they could try it as an inexpensive small FWD coupe with a couple of different engine options (especially since they don’t currently have one in its lineup). It might be a nice alternative for buyers like myself who aren’t crazy about the four-door sedan or five-door hatchback bodystyles of both the Focus and Fiesta.


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