100,000 Consumers to Drive Ford Fiesta Before U.S. Launch

Joshua Duval
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Ford announced yesterday that it aims to get 100,000 potential customers behind the wheel of a European-specification Fiesta between May and December as part of its Fiesta Movement. The test drives will be in addition to the Ford's previous publicity stunt for the Fiesta, during which 100 people were chosen to drive the small car for six months.

According to the press release, there will be five regional test teams travelling the country with European-spec Fiestas. The troupes will visit more than 100 cities and towns, stopping at major regional events and festivals along the way. The teams will meet up at big events to handle demand for the test drives. Test drive locations currently listed on the schedule include Louisville, Cincinnati, San Francisco, Phoenix, Nashville, Charlotte and Baltimore.

All test drive locations will also be free wireless Internet hotspots for visitors. Ford hopes to encourage test drivers to write about their experiences online directly after the tests.

"Providing digital capabilities at each test drive location is symbolic of the way that the Fiesta Movement connects consumers to each other and facilitates two-way communication between Ford and potential customers," Ford Brand Content and Alliance Manager Connie Fontaine said in the press release. "This campaign is about providing honest reviews and accessible outlets to promote and learn about the Fiesta."

Anyone who completes a test drive will receive a downloadable music playlist "compiled with the Fiesta and its audience in mind," as well as an entry into a contest to win two all-expense tickets for trips to two music festivals in Chicago, New Orleans and Indio, Calif.

The 2011 Ford Fiesta, which is expected to go on sale in 2010, is a subcompact that will compete in the U.S. with other small cars like the Chevrolet Aveo, Honda Fit and Toyota Yaris. In Europe, the 2009 Ford Fiesta overtook the Volkswagen Golf to become the bestselling vehicle for the month of March.

More information about Ford's Fiesta Movement can be found at www.fiestamovement.com.

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