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AutoWeek's Fast Five: Q&A with Ford product creation guru Henrik Fisker

By AUTOWEEK

Henrik Fisker, who heads up Ford’s advanced product creation in California when he’s not busy as design director for Aston Martin, took five with our man about Europe, Matt Davis, when the two crossed paths at the Detroit auto show:

AW: Here at the Detroit auto show, what’s the Henrik Fisker calling card since moving to the Irvine, California, design center in early 2003?

Fisker: The new Lincoln Aviator.

AW: Tell us about the Lincoln Mark X concept.

Fisker: That was pretty much done before I arrived. It’s obviously just a redone T-Bird and is strictly a show car. Had I been in Irvine earlier, it most likely wouldn’t have happened.

AW: What’s up with the Mercury brand? Is there a pulse there?

Fisker: Mercury has been effectively neglected over the past 10 to 15 years and it’s my goal to define the brand. There’s little money to do something utterly new, of course, but you’ll see a couple very fresh Mercury ideas at the end of 2004.

AW: What’s the real difference between Ford, Lincoln and Mercury?

Fisker: Ford now owns the tough and bold personality. Our thinking for Lincoln is to make it more distinctly upmarket from Ford, while the angle on Mercury is to create a slightly more sporty-oriented marque.

AW: Why not kill Mercury?

Fisker: Because there’s a real opportunity there to use the Mercury name, to reinvent it. Besides, killing a brand costs a ton of money. Better to encourage this one back to life.
 
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