DetN Howes: Ford Has an 'Effing Problem
Of all Ford's fiascos to flail-on about, FoMoCo's "F" fanaticism seems the most fantastic. And yet Detroit News columnist Dannny Howes figures "Ford's 'F' fixation fouls its future." Howes focuses on the fact that Ford's new "Fiesta" joins a farrago of F-named product, and fustigates Ford for its Fabian fustiness. The fastuous scribe's also freaked about the Flex. "Are they really gonna call it the Flex, a person familiar with the situation tells me the new guy asked. Yes, Chairman Bill Ford replied, echoing [VP of Marketing Jim] Farley's skepticism. Then the über-boss added that Mulally wasn't too keen on the name, either. Which ought to tell you something, and it's this: 17 months of the Mulally era — a $23 billion recap plan, a landmark contract with the United Auto Workers, a global effort to coalesce Ford's fiefdoms into a single unit — have failed to relegate the past to the past and instead focus intensely on the future." It tells me that Mulally's minions have made their mentor meable to Manichean mansuetude. Or something like that.
Ahh...A Fiesta had the distinction of being the first FWD car I had ever ridden in (back in 1978). Too bad it wasn't the last. Ford should fast focus fastidiously on it's foundering fleet of fluff, 'fore it finds falling fares and flatlined figures. Fancy fantastic flivvers? Fugheddaboudit!
Lets not forget the E issue either 1. Escape 2. Excursion 3. Explorer 4. Edge 5.Expedition 6.E series Van F is not the only letter they use over and over again.
The Flex aside - the Fiesta was not named Fiesta in the U.S. just to satisfy some need to have "F" names or to harken back to 1978. The Fiesta was named Fiesta because that's what it's called in Europe. That's what it will be called in China. That's the name it will get in Brazil, India, Thailand, etc. etc. This article has a point with the Flex - it is a somewhat less than stellar name. But, it's sort of a damned if you do/don't. If Ford had gone back to Fairlane (or something else) after Farley questioned it, there would have been a hayday on this site (and others) about how Ford keeps changing names. However, Howes' rant about the Fiesta as a demonstration of Mulally's inability to lead the company into the future? Just complete idiocy.