Tuesday, July 7, 2009

MS Accelerators ALMOST WORK,which is MOSTLY BAD....another practice post.

Ford targets young drivers with Fiesta Movement
By TERRY BOX / The Dallas Morning News

Every morning, Charlie Brumfield slips behind the wheel of Ford's future – and floors it.

Video Charlie Brumfield and Nick Malone are part of Ford's Fiesta movement in which Ford gave them a new Fiesta to drive for six months in return for some grassroots exposure.
Actually, Brumfield drives away from his home in Mesquite in a European Ford Fiesta, one of a new group of high-content compacts that Ford will begin selling in the U.S. next summer.

"It's a blast to drive," says Brumfield, 26, a Web site designer and photographer. "It begs you to red line it in every gear."

In an unusual marketing move, Ford Motor Co. gave 100 Fiestas to young drivers nationwide for six months, hoping they will talk and blog about the small, distinctively shaped sedans and take them places where they can be seen.

Ford CEO Alan Mulally, at the helm of the only Detroit Three automaker that didn't file for bankruptcy, has put a priority on bolstering the automaker's burly truck lineup with an array of refined compact and midsize sedans.

The auto market is shifting to smaller, greener vehicles. But Ford also realizes that small cars – derisively called "penalty boxes" by some – are still a tough sell in big, expansive America, and that's where Brumfield and dozens like him roll in.

The Fiesta is the first of several European compact cars that Ford plans to bring to the States. It's designed and built in Europe and not related to the old American car of the same name.

The "Fiesta Movement," which began about three months ago, was fairly controversial initially at Ford because it allows reviewers to say whatever they want about the cars.

"There was never resistance to it, but there were a lot of questions," said Connie Fontaine, brand content and alliance manager for Ford. "But we also viewed this as an opportunity to show we have a lot of confidence in this car."

The Fiesta Movement exemplifies the challenges domestic automakers face in a highly competitive marketplace no longer driven by pickups and SUVs. Aging baby boomers are being supplanted by 20-something millennials as the driving demographic force in the industry.

As a result, analysts say, automakers need to offer different types of vehicles and promote them in nontraditional media such as blogs, Facebook and YouTube. Ford calls these new buyers "lifestreamers."

No comments: