Is the Ford Mustang A Failure

Is the Ford Mustang A Failure

American automakers occasionally take the brunt of the criticism for producing models that are ugly, useless, or even downright perilous. Ford has had its share of beasts through the years in addition to several winners including the current Mustang for which demand cannot be met. For the thrill of it let’s have a look at some of the Ford models that have been derided down through the years.

Model T – What?! How can the automobile that introduced mass production make the list? Well, the vehicle was fine, but Mr. Henry Ford’s statement, “you can have any color you need so long as it is black” has been traced with the upward thrust of General Motors [who gave its buyers a choice in colors] which finally unseaetd Ford as the top automaker in the planet. No, the Model T was fine, but Mr. Ford’s advertising strategy was not.

Edsel – In September 1957, Ford launched a new division – Edsel – and introduced to America one of the most peculiar looking vehicles. Carrying a “horse-collar” shaped grille – some compared it with a toilet seat – the Edsel line was hyped by Ford and confounded by consumers wholeheartedly. Expecting to build two hundred thousand Edsels in its first year of production, only 63,000 were built. Other “radical” facets of the Edsel included a “floating” speedometer that glowed upon reaching a specific speed and an ungainly push button transmission with controls attached to the hub of the steering wheel. Even with a quick makeover finished in time for the subsequent model year, the Edsel limped along only to be pulled one month after the third model year cars were released.

Pinto – Hey, even I owned one! With a 2.3L inline 4 cylinder paired with a 4 speed manny tranny, the Pinto was Ford’s answer in the 1970s to the onslaught of Eastern automobiles flooding the market. The compact rear wheel drive coupe, three door hot hatch, or wagon sold reasonably well till disaster hit : the revelation that the Pinto’s gas tank was capable of exploding in a rear impact frightened buyers away. Mercifully pulled after the 1980 model year; replaced by the favored Escort.

Mustang II – Ford tarnished the Mustang name in the 1970s with this forgettable and ugly model. Resembling a bloated and stretched Pinto, the Mustang II was feeble, poorly made, and a terrible competitor against its arch rival, the Camaro. All was forgiven by the early 1980s with the return of a newly designed Mustang. Today’s Mustang, on the other hand, is a sold-out success story as it took its styling cues from a Mustang of another era: the fastback autos of the late 1960s and early 1970s.

Before you point your finger at Ford, do not forget to recall some really unmemorable models, foreign and domestic. The Toyota Wagon was panned for its ugly styling and for having an engine that had to be dropped from the engine bay to do a tune up; the Chevy Vega – a Pinto would-be ; AMC’s Pacer – the Jetson’s automobile ; the Suzuki Samurai and Isuzu Rodeo – flip over specialists; the Yugo – a thinly redone 1960s era Fiat; and numerous other automobiles not worth the mention. You hope that automakers learn from their mistakes, but do not count on it. Perhaps in another generation we will see a really forgettable Ford show up, except for now there isn’t one in the line up…hooray for that!.

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A walk though Greenfield Village and Henry Ford this 4 Of July 2008
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