just-auto.com

US/GERMANY [updated 12:00GMT]: Ford US eyeing Europe imports

By just-auto.com editorial team | 6 December 2006

Ford US executives are eyeing Ford Europe products but no decisions have been made on models or branding, a Ford Europe spokesman told just-auto on Wednesday.

The automaker's senior manager of corporate communications, Todd Nissen, was responding to reports that said Ford US would import the current Mondeo for sale as a Mercury and was also interested in the Focus, and S-Max and Galaxy minivans.

The European Focus is a generation ahead of the current US model line.

WardsAuto.com reported that German weekly newspaper Wirtschaftswoche had quoted Ford Werke unit sales executive Juergen Stackmann as saying that some Ford US executives are interested in importing the Mondeo, which could be sold in the US as a Mercury model, with the other vehicle lines also possible candidates for export to the world's largest car market.

But Nissen said that Stackmann had said only "Our American colleagues are thoroughly examining our model portfolio" and had not made any model-specific comments.

Nissen said he could confirm Ford US was planning on enhancing its B- and C-segment model range and was looking at European models but no decisions had been  made.

Ford US spokesman Oscar Suris said by email that the automaker generally did not talk about future product plans.

Ford Europe products have previously been shipped to the US. A line of English Ford cars was sold in the 1950s and 1960s and the German Fiesta and Capri crossed the Atlantic in the 1970s.

Derivatives of the German-made Sierra and Granada Scorpio were sold under the Merkur brand in the 1980s, though with little success.

Most recently, the mid-1990s Mondeo was given a lightly restyled rear end and built and sold in the US, with both I4 and V6 engines, as the Ford Contour and Mercury Mystique.