Business / New Cars

Shanghai hosts global debut of Mustang

By Li Fangfang (China Daily) Updated: 2013-12-09 07:36

Ford's iconic sports car to go on sale locally by end of 2015

Ford's decision to host the global debut of its all-new Mustang in Shanghai on Dec 5 is proof of the US automaker's commitment to making China one of the major markets for its legendary sports car, according to the company.

Ford still has yet to begin selling the Mustang on the Chinese market, though the company entered the country in 1995.

Shanghai hosts global debut of Mustang

From left to right: David Schoch, group vice-president and president of the Asia-Pacific region at the Ford Motor Co; John Lawler, head of Ford China, and Raj Nair, Ford group vice-president for global product development, attended the global debut of its all-new Mustang in Shanghai on Dec 5. Provided to China Daily

"The all-new Mustang is coming to China to further strengthen Ford's product lineup here. It's the latest phase in our '15 by 15 plan' for China," said David Schoch, group vice-president and president of Asia-Pacific at Ford Motor Co.

The US company earlier this year announced that it plans to bring 15 all-new models to China to enrich its product portfolio by 2015, including the premium brand of Lincoln limousines.

"The Ford Mustang is more than a car.

"It's an exciting vehicle that ignites a sense of optimism and confidence that inspires us all," said Schoch, as he revealed the car with the iconic pony in Shanghai in a premiere that was coordinated globally with other five cities - its home city Dearborn, Michigan, as well as Sydney, New York, Los Angeles and Barcelona.

"The One Ford plan provided the opportunity for Mustang to go global, and the car has a strong appeal and fan base all over the world.

"We see this as a way to showcase the most passionate part of the Ford brand and how it resides not only in our performance vehicles but in all our vehicles, including the Fiesta, the Focus and Transit vans," he said.

However, he told China Daily that it is too early to discuss a specific timetable for the Mustang's official launch in the Chinese market.

"The Mustang will be launched in a staggered cadence around the world, with the first cars being available in the US in the fall of 2014, Europe in early 2015, China and the other Asia-Pacific markets over the course of 2015," he said.

Since entering China nearly two decades ago, Ford has expanded its offerings and now has a domestic portfolio of 12 passenger and commercial vehicle models. Most of these vehicles are in the medium and low-end segments.

Analysts have suggested that the US company bring more high-end models, including its luxury brand Lincoln, to China to help promote its brand image.

During the debut of the iconic Mustang, Ford announced that its total sales in China in the first 11 months of this year surged 51 percent from a year earlier to 840,975 units owing to strong November sales, which grew 47 percent year-on-year. "We are well on track in the fast lane in China," said John Lawler, head of Ford China.

"We will enhance our success in the world's largest automobile market by speeding up the offering of models from our whole lineup, from performance cars, SUVs, to commercial vehicles, to further satisfy our Chinese customers' requirements." This year, Ford has already sold more than 350,000 units of the Focus and almost 30,000 of the Mondeo. The SUV sales also surpassed 158,000 units to date.

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