Ford officials are reported to be working to provide the founder of the Chick-fil-A restaurant chain with the last Taurus due to roll off the assembly line on Friday.

According to the Associated Press (AP), Truett Cathy, 85, has had a long relationship with the Atlanta-area plant that makes the sedan, crediting the success of his first restaurant to business from Ford workers across the street.

Chick-fil-A spokesman Don Perry told the news agency on Saturday that Cathy had "a commitment from the plant" to receive the last Taurus.

Ford spokeswoman Anne Marie Gattari told AP the details were not completely settled, although the company is "working to make it happen."

"We want to sell him that last vehicle because we know how much it would mean to him," she said, adding that the deal was undecided because the last vehicles scheduled for production were meant to go into a rental fleet.

AP said Cathy planned to display the last Taurus with many of his other collectible cars at his Atlanta headquarters and at his restaurants.

After opening his first restaurant, the Dwarf Grill, in 1946 with his brother, Cathy in 1961 he developed Chick-fil-A's trademark chicken sandwich (a word that often means 'burger' in the US) and asked diners from the Ford plant in Hapeville to try it. He opened his first Chick-fil-A restaurant in 1967 in Atlanta, AP added.

The news agency noted that Ford announced in January that it would end production of the Taurus after 21 years and sales of nearly 7m vehicles.

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