Is Ford Reconsidering Mach 1 Name for Electric Crossover?
Mustang-inspired SUV may not be Mustang enough to use that badge
Ford still plans to build an all-electric crossover with styling inspired by the Mustang. It just probably won't call it the Mach 1. That name was suggested when the vehicle was first announced earlier this year at the Detroit auto show, but now Ford's top brass are reconsidering applying the storied Mach 1 badge to its upcoming EV.
According to Automotive News, the Mach 1 name was used as a working title to gauge public reaction. "We put that out there to evaluate it," Ford's president of global markets Jim Farley told AN. "There are pros and cons. I don't want to handicap it at this point, but we got a very strong reaction from people." To get an idea just how strong, simply scroll through comments on the social media posts and YouTube video teasing the EV, where you'll find a number of Ford fans threatening to abandon the brand if it calls the new SUV a Mach 1.
But even if it doesn't bear the name of a high-performance Mustang variant from the late '60s (pictured above), the electric crossover will receive plenty of Mustang styling cues. The front end will be heavily influenced by the pony car, which currently walks the line between looking retro and modern. And though powertrain specs are still unknown, Ford promises this will be a performance SUV.
We've heard previously that the electric crossover will ride on the same platform that underpins the new Focus and other upcoming models. Ford's plan for 2020 and beyond calls for five modular platforms that will cover every new Ford product. These architectures will include rear-wheel-drive unibody, front-wheel-drive unibody, body-on-frame, commercial van unibody, and a dedicated battery electric platform.
Speaking of new platforms, Automotive News suggests the next Mustang could adopt the rear-drive unibody platform of the upcoming Lincoln Aviator and Ford Explorer. If that's the case, that could open the door for the first all-wheel-drive Mustang model. At any rate, we'll have to wait a while to see the next-gen Ford Mustang, as it's reportedly been delayed one year to 2021, perhaps due to difficulties in switching to a new platform.
When asked if the switch to a shared platform would limit the car's design possibilities, Mustang chief designer Darrel Behmer said, "Mustang is still going to be a strong, well-proportioned vehicle. The modular architectures will still give us flexibility; it's not going to bastardize Mustang."