DownsideUpDesign

Musings of an Aussie design strategist gone North

Ford Pits New Taurus Against Luxury Brands, hands Mercury/Lincoln a Noose

800x600_Taurus_ads_01

Up until now, confusion has reigned supreme regarding Ford’s positioning of the new is-it-premium-or-isn’t-it Taurus and how it relates to the Lincoln/Mercury ranges.

Well be confused no longer because the online ad campaign for the new car, going live on August 4, pits the new EcoBoosted sedan against… the Lexus LS460!

In a move that’s sure to mightily upset the brand guardians at Lincoln and Mercury (if indeed there are any…), the campaign gives a blow-by-blow account of how the butch sedan bests the behemoth from Japan, along with the Audi A6, Infiniti M45X and Acura RL, while being up to three times cheaper.

The Detroit News quotes Jim Hall, an analyst at 2953 Analytics LLP as saying the approach is “smart and necessary”. “None of the cars in its segment have these features… when people think of your car as more upscale than it is, it’s only going to help you when they see the price.”

Indeed! Why bother with less well equipped Mercury or an overpriced Lincoln?

The words home and goal are coming to mind right now…

[Source: The Detroit News via Autoblog]

Filed under: Advertising, Branding, Car, Car Culture, Design Strategy, Premium, , , , , , ,

Coupe + SUV still = Fail

acura-zdx_concept_2009_800x600_wallpaper_031

Did nobody tell Acura of the collective slack-jaw expression that met the BMW 5 GT in Geneva? Or of the decidedly muted market reception to the proportionally challenged, stupendously impractical X6?

I guess not: Acura wants to have this monstrosity in dealers before the year is out.

Somehow one of the automotive design sites managed to find something to recommend in the ZDX’s lazy BMW pastiche but I’m not buying it.

From mind-blowingly awful “power plenum” grille (plenums this ugly should stay put under the hood) to the hideous confluence of surfaces at the rear via the comically small rear door (look at the opening in the interior shot below), this car makes the vulgar X6 look like the stylistic patron saint of pointless cross-overs.

As one designer friend put it, this car confirms Acura as the world’s premier publisher of 1st-year design student projects.

The lack of subtlety and detailing in the age of the new Volkswagen Polo, with it’s delightfully co-ordinated grille mesh and headlamp bulb caps, speaks volumes about how seriously Acura takes producing a premium product.

Filed under: Car, Concept, Design, Motor Shows, New York, Things I Hate, , , , ,

About DownsideUpDesign

I'm Drew Smith and I'm a freelance design strategist and journalist for the automotive industry. DownsideUpDesign is a place for me to collect stuff that I like, often love and sometimes hate for safe keeping. Get in touch at downsideupdesigner (at) me (dot) com or tweet me (@drewpasmith) to rant, contribute or collaborate!

Latest Tweets

Blog Stats

  • 33,359 hits

Archives

Legal-schmegal…

© Andrew Philip Artois Smith and DownsideUpDesign, 2009. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Andrew/Drew Smith and DownsideUpDesign with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.