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Mustang Mach E Plays Bodystyle Card    

Ford Bets on XSUV Bodystyle with Electric Mach E

The Mustang Mach E is the right product at the right time for Ford.  That it is all electric is secondary; kind of.  What is all important is that it is a 4-door crossover SUV with emotional styling based on the iconic Ford Mustang.

American Vehicle Market Will be 60% SUVs by 2024  The American vehicle market has been transformed dramatically over the past several years.  Crossover SUVs (XSUV) are the name of the game today.  AutoPacific forecasts that 60% of all new vehicles sold in the United States in 2024 will be SUVs – both in the booming crossover market and traditional sport utility vehicles.

Sedans and coupes will drop to 18% in 2024.  Who would have ever thought this would be the case?

Ford has been reacting to this rapid market evolution.  They announced they would drop sedans (not cars) from their lineup.  Sadly for fleets and police departments the Crown Victoria was dropped years ago.  Fiesta is gone.  Focus is gone.  C-Max is gone.  Taurus is gone.  Fusion is in build-out.

Iconic Mustang Carries Ford’s Cars Forward  That leaves the iconic Mustang as the sole “car” in the lineup.  (The GT exoticar doesn’t count).  In fact, the Mustang is the biggest fish in a rapidly shrinking pond.  Only the very long in the tooth Dodge Challenger is directly competing with Mustang.  The Chevrolet Camaro appears to be heading, again, for the dust bin.   Others like the Hyundai Veloster and Honda Civic coupe are not direct competitors.

Ford is doing a good job keeping the Mustang fresh and desirable.  The new high performance 2.3L 4-cylinder turbo is a good example of extending the offerings.  At the nose-bleed end of the spectrum is the mighty Mustang GT500.

Team Detroit  As the story goes, Ford’s product development folks were developing an all-electric vehicle based on the Ford Focus compact car.  At the media preview for the Mustang Mach E, Ford showed the profile of the “compliance car” they were planning to develop.  It promised to be dull and boring like many of the compact EVs on the road today.  Like the Chevrolet Bolt, it would not have sold well.

Then came Team Edison – Ford’s Electric Vehicle and mobility team.  Under the purview of Jim Farley – a Mustang advocate – Team Edison shifted from a compliance car to a Mustang-inspired  XSUV.  That was the right move. Taking three years pre-production development in two more years they transformed the compliance car to the Mustang Mach E XSUV.

Mustang Mach E is an EV – good.  But even better, Mach E is a Mustang with more capability.  It can carry more people comfortably.  It can carry more stuff in the cargo area and the up-front “frunk”.  It has emotion which few other “mainstream” EVs have.

What the Mustang Mach E does is give people who will consider a Ford an EV with Mustang DNA.  It’s not a penalty box.  Mach E is an exciting new entry in the EV field that is going to explode over the next few years.  Ford says there will be 150+ EV models on the road by 2025.  Mach E may be a bit late for the onset of the EV market, but it is well positioned for what is coming.

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