For Sale By:Dealer
Number of Cylinders: 8
Sub Model: xp8
Exterior Color: Black
Interior Color: Gray
Redwood City, California, United States
The Ford Escort concept just unveiled at the Shanghai Motor Show was created with the Chinese market in mind, but it's got people talking all over the world. Not purely fancy, the point of the Escort concept was to give Chinese buyers a preview of what they could expect to see in a Ford showroom in the near future. If Ford wasn't seriously considering the new Escort for other countries, a report in Auto Express indicates that the concept's reception has changed all that.
No less than the incoming chairman of Ford UK said "it could work in other places," bolstering the comments of "a senior Ford insider" who said the question of bringing the car to Europe to slot in underneath the Focus had been raised. That's a long way from anything of the kind happening, which would require Ford to figure out how to sell it for the right price and not torpedo the company reputation among Euro buyers. In any case, we'd be as intrigued as anyone if an Escort resurrection created the next 'who knew?' market segment of few-frills transportation offered by non-Asian carmakers.
"Ford opened 88 dealerships in China last year." "Ford opened 88 dealerships in China during the first half of 2014." "Ford opened 88 dealerships in China last month." None of those statements - even the last one - would seem unbelievable. Saying "Ford opened up 88 dealerships in China last Thursday," though, is a bit more dramatic.
Yes, on June 19 alone, Ford opened the doors on nearly 100 showrooms in the People's Republic, boosting the Blue Oval's total presence in the country to 750 dealerships. Of course, while an overabundance of dealers in the US proved troublesome for American manufacturers back in 2008 and 2009, there's no such concern in China. Considering the country's huge population and the breakneck pace of the local auto industry, you could be forgiven for being surprised Ford only has 750 outlets at this stage.
What's notable about this most recent push, besides the sheer volume of new stores, is their location. Over three-quarters of the new dealerships are in so-called Tier 4 cities, which are smaller towns that still contain millions of people. This fits with Ford's strategy in China of avoiding the bigger battlegrounds that are already dominated by competitors and focusing on setting up shop in newer markets that may have been overlooked, according to Automotive News.
It comes as no surprise when Ford says that 32-percent of Focus ST buyers are under 35, but we weren't expecting this: the average annual salary of Focus ST buyers is $127,000. Twenty-two percent of non-ST Focus buyers are under 35, while their average annual salary is $67,000.
We like the Focus ST because it has 252 horsepower, is genuinely fun to drive and offers great value for performance-minded car enthusiasts; facts that are not lost on customers, it seems. Ford says that the Focus ST has the highest percentage of conquest sales for a non-hybrid model it sells, and that the top-four trade-ins are from Honda, Chevrolet, Mazda and Toyota. Demand for the hot Focus is strongest in Los Angeles, Detroit, Houston and Orlando.
"[The Focus ST is] having this kind of halo effect for other vehicles we'd hoped for when we invested in the ST brand," says John Felice, vice president of US marketing, sales and service, because it's helping to boost sales of other Ford vehicles.