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View Full Version : Ford's PAG rejects Mazda6 platform


carrera4
05-05-2005, 05:00 AM
from <A HREF="http://www.autoweek.com/news" TARGET="_blank">http://www.autoweek.com/news</A><br><TABLE WIDTH="90%" CELLSPACING=0 CELLPADDING=0 ALIGN=CENTER><TR><TD><i>Quote &raquo;</i></TD></TR><TR><TD CLASS="quote"><B>Ford's PAG rejects Mazda6 platform; European design preferred for next-gen mid-sized vehicles</B> <br>MARK RECHTIN | Automotive News<br>Posted Date: 5/4/05<p>LOS ANGELES -- Despite recently spending $1 billion on a global mid-sized car platform, Ford Motor Co. has chosen to stretch a compact car platform for its European mid-sized luxury vehicles.<p>The reason: The mid-sized platform can't meet the performance requirements of Ford's European brands.<p>Ford Motor will modify the current European C1 platform for Volvo's next generation of large cars, such as the S60 and V70. The modified platform also will underpin the Land Rover Freelander redesign coming in 2007, company sources say.<p>The modified platform, called EUCD, could spawn the Jaguar X-Type replacement in 2009. For Ford of Europe, it will be the basis of the Ford Mondeo sedan and Galaxy minivan.<p>The size of the EUCD platform is nearly identical to that of the existing $1 billion Mazda6-based platform, called CD3. In 2002, Ford said CD3 would meet global packaging requirements and have the driving dynamics required of a global mid-sized platform. But the company decided the platform couldn't supply the performance needed for Ford's European brands.<p>"We had to come up with a set of technologies that respond to the market needs of the PAG brands in Europe," says Mark Fields, Ford Motor's executive vice president in charge of Premier Automotive Group.<p><b>Better engine layout</b><p>In Volvo's case, the EUCD platform allows Volvo to continue using its inline-five and inline-six-cylinder engines, says Hans-Olov Olsson, CEO of Volvo Car Corp. Such an engine layout is better for safety and packaging than the CD3's layout for V-6 engines, he says.<p>"We will not compromise on safety, space or interior comfort," Olsson says.<p>Geoff Upex, Land Rover's design director, says vehicles using CD3 might have lacked off-road capability.<p>"Somebody giving you a platform and saying, 'Use that,' is completely different from being involved in the authoring of the platform in the first place," Upex says.<p>Ford declined to make top engineers available to explain why Ford stretched a compact car to meet its European mid-sized requirements, rather than use the existing global mid-sized CD3 platform.<p>With Ford's European plants already set up to handle C1, it might be easier to stretch that platform and use the established processes, build sequences and supplier networks than to start over with the CD3 platform.<p>Ford already has planned for the Mazda6 platform to spawn 10 products, including the Ford, Mercury and Lincoln mid-sized sedans and sport wagons. The company expects to sell about 900,000 units in North America from the platform.<p>The EUCD will share several component sets -- such as suspension, brakes and electrical systems -- with the C1 compact car platform. That platform already is the basis for the Volvo S40, Mazda3 and European-market Ford Focus. In some circles, EUCD is being called C1-Plus.<p>The U.S. Focus is built on the previous-generation Focus platform.<p>Michael Robinet, analyst with CSM Worldwide in Farmington Hills, Mich., believes a platform must produce at least 1 million annual units for it to be efficient.<p><b>2 million units</b><p>Toyota's and Nissan's mid-sized platforms each generate more than 2 million units annually, Robinet says.<p>"The trick is whether you can be flexible enough to vary the technology or content levels within all the different models," he says.<p>Eric Noble, president of The Car Lab consulting firm in Orange, Calif., says manufacturing efficiency means little if it sacrifices the vehicles' performance. Says Noble: "In order to build in the attributes they want, they need this different platform."<p>Rick Kranz and Amy Wilson contributed to this report<br></TD></TR></TABLE>

nismo
05-05-2005, 01:06 PM
Its going to be interesting to see how the larger cars on this platform perform. I'm guessing the new Volvo S80 will continue to be on the P1(?) that Volvo developed but the S60 will be on this stretched C1(EUCD) platform. Either platform they use Ford seems to be getting better with creating more unique cars off of the same platform... excluding most Ford/Mercury/Lincolns though, those models need to be a little bit more different next time around...<BR><BR>
<i>Modified by nismo at 1:16 PM 5/5/2005</i>

Hornbag
05-07-2005, 05:18 AM
So there might be an X-type then...i supose they didnt quote it, but autoweek said the platform will be the basis of the next X-type?<p>I supose for Volvo's sake, this makes sence...

Bass-o-Matic
05-09-2005, 06:58 PM
Interesting, given that the 6 development started while Mark Fields (current head of PAG) was in charge in Hiroshima...

AM2
05-10-2005, 01:15 AM
<TABLE WIDTH="90%" CELLSPACING=0 CELLPADDING=0 ALIGN=CENTER><TR><TD><i>Quote, originally posted by <b>CarpFan</b> &raquo;</i></TD></TR><TR><TD CLASS="quote">Interesting, given that the 6 development started while Mark Fields (current head of PAG) was in charge in Hiroshima... </TD></TR></TABLE><br>Well Mazda is not Volvo, so I guess things change when you become the head of PAG.

Bass-o-Matic
05-13-2005, 06:34 PM
<TABLE WIDTH="90%" CELLSPACING=0 CELLPADDING=0 ALIGN=CENTER><TR><TD><i>Quote, originally posted by <b>AM2</b> &raquo;</i></TD></TR><TR><TD CLASS="quote"><br>Well Mazda is not Volvo, so I guess things change when you become the head of PAG.</TD></TR></TABLE><p>mmmm, I guess the opposite could be said, as well <IMG NAME="icon" SRC="http://www.germancarfans.com/images/forums/cool.gif" BORDER="0"> <p>Seriously, unless the new C platform (Focus/Cmax/Maz3/S40-V50) is really an incredibly flexible platform, I'll be really impressed if this can support all of those PAG products... I mean, I've got a Mazda3 (and have spent ALOT of time in S40/V50) and, though I love it, I don't see it expanding all the way to a $50k luxury sedan (S80, which is part of the Large Car platform that this would replace).<p>On the other hand, that Mazda6 platform is expandable (with the Hamptons cross-over from Ford, as well as the Aviator/CrossSport models, coming from it, as an example) and I can't believe that the easiest path, of the two, ends up being the Mazda3 (and, yes, I know that it's not a Mazda-developed platform). <p>I wonder if there's a bit of sensitivity to the fact that so many models are coming off of the Maz6 (though, to be sure, there won't be parts number commonality), that they decided to toss out a story about a different direction for PAG products. I mean, by the time it's out, few (if any) outside of Ford would be able to say that it's definitely J56 or C1.