By SEMA Editors
Sales of performance vehicles, such as the Shelby GT350, are up 70% in the United States since 2009.
Ford will deliver more than 12 new performance vehicles for global enthusiasts through 2020, as the company announced last week its new global Ford Performance team.
The vehicles include an all-new Focus RS that will be available to customers in major markets around the world for the first time. It is part of Ford's plan to deliver even more performance vehicles, parts and accessories for customers around the world more quickly.
“Our new global Ford Performance team ties together racing, performance vehicles and parts,” said Raj Nair, Ford group vice president, Global Product Development. “It will allow us to more quickly introduce products and accessories that meet the needs of customers around the world on-road and on the track.”
Focus RS was last introduced in 2009. It will join Ford's existing performance lineup, including Fiesta ST, Focus ST, Shelby GT350 Mustang and F-150 Raptor.
According to Ford, performance vehicle sales are growing around the world, with sales up 70% in the United States and 14% in Europe since 2009. Ford's ST lineup, for example, is attracting younger buyers who love to drive. In the United States, more than 65% of ST customers come from outside the Ford brand, and more than 50% of Ford performance vehicle owners' next vehicle purchase is a Ford. Millennials are purchasing ST vehicles at a rate twice that of other Ford-branded vehicles.
Powering performance vehicles, such as Fiesta ST and Focus ST, is Ford's EcoBoost engine range. Since the introduction of the EcoBoost engine in 2009, Ford has produced more than 2 million EcoBoost engines globally.
The 3.5L EcoBoost engine in the IMSA TUDOR Championship series powers a record-setting Daytona racing prototype sports car, as well as Ford cars, trucks and utility vehicles. Another example of this technology transfer can be found in the recently revealed Shelby GT350 Mustang, which goes on sale next year in the United States and Canada. Aerodynamic innovations developed through Ford's investment in racing were applied to the front end of the new Shelby GT350 Mustang, helping improve downforce in the car and cooling.
New Global Team
The new Ford Performance organization unifies Ford SVT, Team RS and Ford Racing globally, creating performance vehicles, parts and accessories for customers. This includes developing innovations and technologies in aerodynamics, light-weighting, electronics, powertrain performance and fuel efficiency that can be applied more broadly to Ford's product portfolio.
In addition to using racetracks around the world, the team will develop new vehicles and technologies at Ford's engineering centers globally and at the new technical center in Charlotte, North Carolina. This facility will help the team deliver racing innovations, as well as advance tools for use in performance vehicles and daily drivers alike.
The Ford Performance organization is led by Dave Pericak, who has been appointed director, Global Ford Performance.