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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 03-09-03, 12:09 AM Thread Starter Administrator
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Hot Wheels Focus

LAS VEGAS, Nov. 5, 2002 - Ford, maker of the world’s best-selling car has teamed with Mattel®, the world’s leading toy car brand, to develop the Hot Wheels Focus concept.

The Hot Wheels Focus concept is a one-of-a-kind Focus ZX3 with a 180 horsepower, supercharged 2.0-liter engine, 18-inch wheels, custom body kit, exhaust and brake packages and a paint job that features a dazzling array of orange and yellow "Hot Wheels" flames. The car’s side door also sports the ubiquitous Hot Wheels logo - part and parcel of more than 41 million tiny hot rods since 1968.

"We’ve been toying around with the idea of creating a link with Hot Wheels," said Mike Zevalkink, executive director of the Ford Performance Group. "This Hot Wheels concept puts a bright orange, 180-horsepower exclamation point on our fun-to-drive Focus."

The Hot Wheels Focus is a concept created by the Ford Performance Group’s Vehicle Personalization team, which is responsible for more than 100,000 special-edition vehicles sold in 2002, including the Ford Bullitt Mustang. The Ford Performance Group also includes Ford SVT and Ford Racing Technology.

Ford and Mattel developed this concept with several goals in mind: creating a fun attention-getter; gauging customer interest; and creating a running test-bed to demonstrate Ford’s interest in developing partnerships with SEMA members.

"We’re continuing to go after the import tuner market in a big way with Ford Focus," said Zevalkink. "We used the Hot Wheels Focus as a laboratory for SEMA members to demonstrate that Focus is a hot pocket rocket platform with a lot of appeal to compact customizers."

Classic Soft Trim, a premiere supplier of custom interiors, managed the project and provided a custom interior to match the extroverted exterior design.

The graphic design was provided by Mattel, which designed a matching die cast special edition model Hot Wheels Focus. A Wings West body kit and APC custom headlamps, taillamps, and side view mirrors are the foundation for the exterior graphic. The finish is PPG paint, applied by Santini Paint, an accomplished custom car painter. In addition to the wild paint scheme that makes the Hot Wheels Focus stand out in any crowd or traffic jam, the car has a number of performance modifications and a high performance Kenwood entertainment system.

Custom billet work was done by Trenz. In addition to Stainless Steel Brakes’ brake system upgrade and a Borla Custom Performance Exhaust, Ford Racing Technology supplied a supercharger, performance clutch, headers, sport suspension lowering package and racing tachometer to lend street credentials to the design. Applying power to the pavement are 18-inch Rally Racing Wheels by OZ Wheels and Proxy Performance Toyo tires. Bill Kinny’s Street Rods installed all performance parts.

"We’ll test customer reaction to the Hot Wheels Focus over the next few months," said Zevalkink. "We’re thrilled with the car and very pleased with the cooperation of all of our partners, including SEMA members and Mattel. Time and the market will tell if we’ll see a Hot Wheels Focus that our customers could take home."

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