mustang84

Rumors: New RWD Fords coming in 2011

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Apparently Ford has approved the production of a new global RWD platform from Austrialia that will underpin a new Mustang, Crown Victoria, Grand Marquis, and Town Car (with possible name changes) for model year 2012. This info aligns with what insiders have been saying at BON for months now (such as the Explorer going to Aussie RWD), so hopefully it's all true.

DEARBORN, Mich. — The Ford Motor Company plans to challenge crosstown rival General Motors with a new family of rear-wheel-drive coupes and sedans, but the first of the new U.S. cars aren't expected to hit the street until model-year 2012.

IL has learned that Ford's Australian subsidiary will do much of the initial engineering work on the new rear-drive architecture — in effect, borrowing a page from GM's playbook. The General's Holden subsidiary likewise is leading the engineering on GM's new Zeta rear-drive family.

Why Australia? Because the product development teams at both automakers have broad experience at developing rear-drive vehicles, including performance editions of standard production models.

Ford of Australia is preparing to launch a redesigned Falcon sedan in early 2008 and already has begun development work on the next-generation Falcon, which will continue with rear-wheel drive. Now, top executives at Ford headquarters in Dearborn want to expand that work to encompass derivatives for North America and perhaps Europe.

Ford suppliers know the future architecture generically as the "global large rear-wheel-drive vehicle platform."

Ford's plan for its new RWD/AWD range is relatively modest.

For North America, it is expected to include replacements for the Mustang, the Crown Victoria, the Grand Marquis and the Town Car. For Australia, there will be replacements for the Falcon, Fairlane and LTD sedans. There may also be a new rear-drive flagship sedan for Ford of Europe.

Ford may even develop a car-based replacement for its Explorer SUV, using the new architecture, while its Australian arm will likely base the next-generation Territory tall wagon on the same component set.

Ford's new RWD/AWD platform is being engineered to accommodate both V6 and V8 engines, including the new twin-turbo gasoline direct-injection TwinForce power plants that are being developed in Dearborn, as well as the company's new dual-clutch, six-speed PowerShift transmission. Among the TwinForce engines reportedly under development are a 3.5-liter V6 and a 5.0-liter V8.

The first of the new RWD/AWD vehicles for North America are expected to reach production in calendar-year 2011, according to suppliers, and would likely be marketed as 2012 models.

A prospective successor to the Crown Victoria could draw styling inspiration from the Ford Interceptor concept that made its debut earlier this year at the 2007 Detroit Auto Show, according to Ford insiders. The Interceptor was built from scratch, on a cobbled-up derivative of the Mustang platform, but its design cues point the way to a big Ford sedan of the future — it could be called Galaxie — that could function, in different guises and with different powertrain teams, as both family hauler and performance car.

Replacements for the Crown Vic, Grand Marquis and Town Car can't come too soon. The current cars are virtually dinosaurs, even by Detroit standards. They are built on a rear-drive platform code-named Panther that dates to model-year 1979.

What this means to you: Ford CEO Alan Mulally apparently thinks GM's Australia-sourced RWD scheme is a good one, since he wants to copy it.

Posted Image

http://www.edmunds.com/insideline/do/News/articleId=121698

Edited by mustang84
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Hopefully Ford is around by then. I guess the new F-150 should tide them over.

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Ford is going to build yet another crossover SUV?

Lay off the communion wine there father, salvation is already on it's way.

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I for one will be very sad when the last BOF car ever rolls off

the assembly line. Esp. since Ford has been slowly suffocating

the Panther cars with a pillow for over a decade. <_<

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I hope and pray this comes to fruition. Then all of the domestic makers will be back to their natural places in the world... building AMERICAN CARS. Wow, a Ford Galaxie with styling like the Interceptor? Fantastic. Make the Mercury a Marquis (no "Grand") with an attitude like McGarret's big Mercuries from Hawaii Five-O, and Mercury would suddenly be back on the shopping lists of people who are not dragging around oxygen tanks. Then give the Lincoln sedan an ultra-luxury aura, a la '61 Continental (nice name for it!), with an American slant to counter Cadillac's Euro-performance stance, and all three big sedans would have an instant place in the sedan market. This is all so elementary, like GM's return to a market they owned, it's unbelievable. This is so absolutely natural, it must be done.
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Great News!!!!

Its good to see Ford will finally lay the Panther platform to rest. The cars were outclassed by the competition years ago.

I hope the platform will enable Ford to finally give all Mustangs an independent rear suspension. Since it appears as though the upcoming Camaro and Challenger will have IRS, it seems Ford should not let the Mustang carry on with its current setup. Hopefully enough of the costs will be leveraged by the other cars to keep the Mustang affordable.

I do have a wish list for this new rear drive platform. Some of the items are listed in the original article; other items were added by me:

FORD:

* Mustang: The pony car lives! Give all versions an independent rear suspension.

* Galaxie: Large rear drive sedan with bold Interceptor Concept inspired styling and historic name.

MERCURY:

* Cougar: Give this rear drive sporty coupe distinct European styling inside and out (don't create a badge engineered Mustang clone). I would love to see Mercury morph into Ford's Eurocentric brand with its own design language. Mercury would be the perfect brand to incorporate Ford of Europe's kinetic design philosophy. Let the Ford brand in the United States carry on with the Red, White, and Bold philosophy and justify Mercury's existence with the kinetic design philosophy. If Mercury doesn't adopt its own identity, then there is no reason for the brand to exist.

* Marquis: I agree with the person who submitted the idea of dropping the "Grand" part of the name for this model. Again, give this large rear drive sedan its own unique European based kinetic design.

LINCOLN:

* Large rear drive sedan with MKR Concept inspired styling.

* Large rear drive 4-5 passenger hardtop coupe/convertible.

* Large rear drive crossover. I think this vehicle is better suited for the Lincoln brand, instead of Ford (Explorer). It would give Lincoln something unique and different from Ford or Mercury.

Edited by cire
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I hope the platform will enable Ford to finally give all Mustangs an independent rear suspension.

The dragstrip crowd won't like that much.

As far as my wish list:

I'm going to assume this new standard replaces both the D3 car AND the Panther

Ford's standard should either be called Taurus, Torino, Victoria (dropping the "Crown"), or Scorpio (DEFINITELY Scorpio for Europe, staying Falcon in Oz, obviously). Galaxie and to a lesser extent Fairlane have a funny feel to them.

Already on record with my all-coupe interests for Mercury. Sticking with the Cyclone four-door idea, and shorter Cougar two-door. Ford ha bread and butter covered, Mercury needs to have the sex appeal.

I'm fine with a Lincoln Continental for the ultimate off this chassis, and for the limo base. Suicide rear doors?!?!?!?!

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The dragstrip crowd won't like that much.

F**k 'em... IRS is better for handling.

As far as my wish list:

I'm going to assume this new standard replaces both the D3 car AND the Panther

I don't think so... I don't see the D3 going away anytime soon, what with the '08 Taurus/Sable just now coming out..this is to replace Panther and the current Mustang platforms.

It's interesting..it looks like Ford is pursuing a similar Australia-led RWD strategy to GM's Zeta.. I'm looking forward to new big cars from Ford...maybe call them Galaxie, Marquis, and Continental (retire the Town Car name and bring back Continental would work for me).

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I don't see the D3 going away anytime soon, what with the '08 Taurus/Sable just now coming out..this is to replace Panther and the current Mustang platforms.

If this is for 2011, surely they'll be done with D3 by then. And those D3 cars are obviously full-size right now (Fusion's CD3 has intermediates well-catered to now). It makes only that much more sense that that car would replace both.
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