DETROIT - European and US versions of the new Escort will be much more similar than Ford's earlier world car, the Ford Mondeo-Ford Contour-Mercury Mystique.
'The Escorts will be extremely similar, virtually indistinguishable,' said William Boddie, vice president of Ford's VC1 small-and medium-car vehicle center.
They will have the same interior and exterior but will offer different powertrains and options in the two markets. In the past, the European and US Escorts were built on entirely different platforms.
The Escort will arrive in Europe in spring. A date for US production has not been set.
Although the cars are the same in appearance, Boddie said, 'You are talking about two absolutely different kinds of people who buy these cars.'
In the USA the Escort is an entry-level car. In Europe, it competes in the middle of the market in the lower-medium segment.
Thus, Europe will have a bigger choice of powertrains. Europe may get Escorts with a costly, fully galvanized body to compete.