New Delhi, March 23, 2018: The platform will be jointly developed between the two automakers in order to make the most of this new phase of co-operation between Ford & Mahindra.
According to the reports published in auto.ndtv.com by Cyrus Dhabhar Last year we brought you news about Ford and Mahindra’s upcoming joint venture to share platforms and develop new vehicles specifically for the Indian market. And now, its all signed, sealed and official. Mahindra and Ford have signed an MOU to develop a new midsized and compact SUV and a new electric vehicle for the Indian market. The new SUVs will wear a Ford body and of course will be badged Ford but will be based on a platform that will be made by Mahindra. The platform will be jointly developed between the two automakers in order to make the most of this new phase of co-operation between the American auto giant and the Indian utility vehicle specialist.
Essentially, the next generation Mahindra XUV 500 (not the facelift that has been spied recently) will have the same platform as the next Ford SUV that will make it to India. The SUV will bridge the gap between the Ford Ecosport and the Ford Endeavour, which originally could have been filled by the likes of the Ford Kuga. Ford has now dropped the plan of bringing the Kuga to India in favour of this new jointly developed SUV. The other SUV – a compact SUV, speculatively could take on the likes of the Hyundai Creta.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr Pawan Goenka, Managing Director, Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd said, “Both teams are working together on joint development areas in keeping with industry requirements and leveraging mutual strengths. We are excited about the synergies unveiled through this collaboration and the potential opportunities it will bring.”
Auto.ndtv.com further added that jim Farley, Ford executive vice president and president of Global Markets was also present for the signing and said, “Ford is committed to offering the best vehicles, technologies and services that fit the lifestyles and preferences of Indian consumers. Listening to our customers and incorporating their future needs is the core premise of this collaboration. With utility vehicles and electrification as key focus areas, we are glad to see the progress our two companies have made.”
Interestingly, this isn’t the first time Mahindra and Ford have come together for the Indian market. Back in 1995 when Ford entered the Indian market, it made its entry as Mahindra-Ford with the Escort sedan. Cars like the Mondeo and the Icon too were launched under the joint banner but Ford later split to become an independent automaker in India.
The MOU will see Mahindra and Ford co-operate with each other for a period of three years. While Ford will get access to economies of scale and a lower cost structure from Mahindra’s new platform, Mahindra will get access to Ford engineering prowess. Mahindra will also get support in – ‘global emerging markets, including Ford’s manufacturing and distribution network’. Ford’s headquarters are based out of Dearborn, Michigan, which is right outside the Detroit area. Mahindra too has a presence in the Detroit area with two facilities that make the Roxor off-road vehicle and the Genzee electric mobility solutions.