Speaking this week at the new Ford Focus product reveal to UK based Journalists Roger Putnam, Chairman of Ford of Britain said, "This year we will sell 130,000 Focus models, around 46,000 more than the Renault Megane range which is considered to be the style leader in the sector," he added.
Steve Hood, Ford’s UK Director of Marketing said, "In the Focus segment of the UK market it has to appeal to customers wanting everything from a budget car right through to premium models. Common to all customers is the requirement for quality and this message will govern our marketing position and strategy. Already the new Focus offers great value for money but today’s market is different and the UK has become the most competitive in the world".
"The new Focus has to compete and retain its overall sales leadership. Premium brand models such as the BMW 1 Series and Audi A3 are now emerging as new competitors in the C segment. The latest Focus has quality in there so we can compete with the best. It has a quality stance on the road and we have added quality to the ingredients that make up the Focus, inside and out" said Hood.
He added, "The new Focus gives premium quality in a volume segment but we have versions which will compete at the premium end of the segment. The Focus gives quality of product, driving quality and comfort"
"In addition to Studio, LX, Sport, Zetec, Zetec Climate and Ghia levels of specification for three and five door, and estate models we are introducing a new top end Titanium level of specification. These will be a techno - luxury derivatives with the emphasis on modern technology and materials. We are including features like an MP3 player and metal and graphite interior trims and these put the new models above the current Ghia versions which themselves have improved levels of specification. Although the Ghia models have increased in price by £600 the value of the improved specification is £1,200 and we have lowered the price of Studio models by £200 and LX version by £250 to give lower entry points for new Focus customers" said Hood.
Ford revealed the launch of the all-new Focus range will take place in the UK over the weekend of the 8-9 January 2005 and most derivatives will be available in the first quarter of the year. Prices range from £10,895 to £18,525.
Ford say that 75 per cent of new Focus sales will be five-door models with estates taking 10 per cent of sales. They expect diesel models to account for 30 per cent of sales but this will increase during next year in line with their current Mondeo range to 40 per cent. Models with LX and Sport levels of trim will take 40 per cent of total sales with Zetec and Ghia trim levels each accounting for up to 25 per cent. Studio and Titanium derivatives will account for the remaining 10 per cent of model mix.
Ford also confirmed a coupe/cabriolet variant will be added to the range in the future and the new Focus will be their representative model in the world rally championship in the 2006 season. The current Focus will be used in 2005.
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