Saturday, September 26, 2009
Ford Motor Company President and CEO Alan Mulally today revealed the much-anticipated new car to be produced in India. Called the new Ford Figo, the car was unveiled at a press event in Delhi as a major addition to the Ford India brand portfolio.The Ford Figo, a new nameplate and a fresh face on the Indian market, signals Ford’s intention to compete in India’s largest and most important small car market segment.The Figo will come with a 1.2 petrol and a 1.5 diesel engine. Three variants Ambiente, Trend and Titanium. No word on pricing yet. That will only be known at the launch in March 2010. It is expected to be in the 5-6 lakh bracket
Ford Figo is the result of a significant Ford investment commitment to expand its plant near Chennai for volume production as a small-car centre of excellence regionally. Ford’s $500 million investment has doubled the plant’s production capacity to 200,000 units per year and introduces major advances in high-quality automation and innovative, eco-friendly production techniques.
Design-conscious Italy inspired the new Ford Figo’s name. Figo is colloquial Italian for “cool.”
From its modern headlamps, grille shapes and sculpted bonnet of its distinctive face to the subtle integrated spoiler and chamfered window shape at the rear, Ford Figo is filled with kinetic design touches. These also include sculpted shapes to the body side – chiseled front fenders, a “comet tail” undercut in the doors and additional light-catching sculpting in the lower bodyside – which combine to communicate the solidity, substance and protective safety of its design.With its wheels positioned at the four corners of the vehicle with minimal overhang, Ford Figo’s bold wheel arches self-assuredly signal its agility and solidity.
With more automation and high-tech new facilities, the new site reflects the latest Ford manufacturing processes globally and pioneers new technologies for Ford and India. Created with a “best of the best” approach, it has been benchmarked against other competitive facilities globally, as well as the current volume manufacturers in the Indian market, for quality and production efficiency.
The transformed plant introduces eco-friendly production techniques like its new Three-Wet High-Solids paint process. This approach produces beautifully painted vehicles with three wet coats – primer, base coat and clear coat – of high solids-content paint applied one after the other without oven curing between coats. A first for India, it produces fewer carbon dioxide emissions and reduces volatile organic compounds emissions by about 20 percent compared to current medium-solids solvent-borne paints. Use of high-solids content results in a paint finish with high levels of gloss and depth of colour which is more resistant to scratches and stone chips.