Ford's "effing" problem needs a fix

Towards the end of 2003, Ford unveiled the Freestar. It was a lousy minivan, and its name wasn't much better. From there the f-bombs started pouring in with the Freestyle, Five Hundred, and Fusion. Ford had a Shakespearean stranglehold on alliteration, but outside of the decent success of the Fusion, Ford's effed-up naming convention brought little name recognition to the Blue Oval's car lineup. When Allan Mulally came to town, he scrubbed the Freestyle and Five Hundred names for the much more recognizable and respected Taurus and Taurus X, but unfortunately the basic shape of the family haulers didn't change enough for customers to want them.

Detroit News Columnist Daniel Howes accurately points out that Ford is back to effing up the names of its vehicles. The Flex arrives this summer, and the Fiesta arrives in 2010. The News says Ford marketing head Jim Farley questioned why the Flex name would adorn Ford's full-size crossover, but even the ex-Toyota wunderkind is unable or unwilling to lose the F. We don't understand the fixation Ford has with the sixth letter of the alphabet. The Dearborn automaker's two most successful cars of the past 40 years are the Taurus and Mustang, both of which are decidedly sans F. As a matter of fact, the Camry, Civic, Accord, Impala, and Malibu are all alliteration-free. Sure, if the Flex and Fiesta are great products they'll sell no matter what they're called, but we'd like for Ford to give us an effing break.

[Source: Detroit News]

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