On the verge of its introduction, Ford has facelifted the Focus.
That’s right. Ford has given the 2008 Focus a new grill and front appearance before the car has even hit the market.
Yes, it is a facelift of a facelift. The new car is a facelifted version of the current Focus. It was originally displayed at the Detroit Auto Show this past January. But Ford continued to hold sessions with – sorry ‘bout this – focus groups. The feedback Ford got was that the car, which didn’t have much chrome, looked “unfinished.”
Well, they sure solved that problem. The car now gets a brushed aluminum grill that runs from headlight to headlight, round foglights instead of square ones, and much more brushed aluminum and chrome trim in the interior: instrument panel, door handles, shift knob. They even changed the stitching on the seats: it’s now white on black leather.
About the last-minute changes, Ford’s product marketing manager for small and medium cars, Beth Donovan said, ”It’s highly unusual.”
One thing’s for sure, though. Ford’s listening. They may have not listened well enough, at least yet, to import the European Focus, rather than a revised version of the domestic market car. But, the willingness to make the last minute changes, even if it means spending a little more on the car, suggests that the underlying attitude is focusing (couldn’t help myself) on selling cars.