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Ford to take over FPV brand - Prodrive quits 

 

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 Post subject: Ford to take over FPV brand - Prodrive quits
Posted: Thu Aug 30, 2012 1:14 pm 
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Ford Australia has been forced to bring its performance car division in-house to secure the future of the iconic Falcon GT after the engineering firm that builds it, Prodrive, decided to get out of the local market.

The changeover is due to occur at the end of the year, when 32 FPV staff will be made redundant. The news was given to FPV workers at 10am today.

Prodrive Australia managing director Bryan Mears says it has become too difficult for the operation to continue independently.

“We want to ensure that our product, which we’re very proud of, will be in very good hands,” he says.

“You can’t ignore what’s happening in the marketplace. We came to the decision that you need to protect the brand.”

Ford Australia president Bob Graziano said it was important to maintain both the FPV and GT brands so the company had to step in and take control.

“We will, as the Ford Motor Company, continue to build this brand into the future,” he says.

Some FPV specialists may be offered contract positions as the hand-assembly of the Falcon GT’s supercharged V8 moves to Geelong, alongside Ford’s six-cylinder engine plant.

Instead of cars being transported in partially-built form from Ford’s Broadmeadows factory to FPV’s boutique facility across the Hume Highway – where the finishing touches are added – under the new arrangement the FPV cars will be built on Ford’s mass-production line.

Ford Australia says there should be no impact on customers, and the upcoming limited edition GT Falcon R-Spec is going ahead as planned.

Ford says it plans FPV to be “business as usual” next year when the rest of the performance car range resumes production after the batch of limited edition models are built.

Ford also says it has no plans to change the current network of approximately 70 FPV dealers nationwide. The FPV badging and branding will remain on the cars and retail outlets.

The move to bring FPV in house was widely speculated on internet forums two months ago.

At the time, however, Ford Australia insiders indicated such a decision was “a long way off” – if it were to happen at all.

Drive understands the rumours surfaced about the same time as Prodrive expressed an interest to Ford to leave the Australian market in the wake of weaker than expected sales.

Ford and FPV had invested $40 million in the supercharged engine which went on sale almost two years ago. While sales have increased, the FPV line-up is still selling at half the rate of that of rival Holden Special Vehicles.

The most powerful Falcon GT of all time is also yet to eclipse previous sales records set by the BA Falcon GT.

Rather than let FPV die – and with it the Falcon GT and F6 turbocharged six-cylinder – Ford Australia conducted a feasibility study after being made aware of Prodrive’s sudden decision to shutter its facilities.

That Ford Australia was able to mount a rescue package within just two months is a sign of how important the Falcon GT still is to the brand.

A Ford insider told Drive: “While the performance car market is struggling, we still see the value in having FPV and the Falcon GT in our line-up and we didn’t want to lose it. Plus, we think we can find some [cost] efficiencies that will make it more viable.”

Ford and Prodrive previously had a 49:51 per cent partnership in the FPV business, but now Ford Australia will gain full control.

The change opens the possibility for Ford to expand the FPV range beyond Falcon-based models. But with such a quick changeover Graziano says those decisions are still to be made.

“It’s probably too early to talk about any changes to the portfolio,” he says.

Graziano also dismissed any suggestion that the new deal would mean the revival of the XR8 Falcon, which was discontinued in June 2010. He admits that a viable business case for the XR8 just can’t be made in the current climate.

“I don’t think there has been any change on XR8 in the last 45 days since I was last asked about it,” Granzio says.

It brings to an end an era of partnerships that date back to 1991, when Tickford was created. It became the Tickford Vehicle Experience in 1999 before switching to Prodrive in 2002.

The FPV rescue package means Ford will need to spend an undisclosed amount of money buying some of the equipment necessary to build the bespoke supercharged V8 engines and other components.

While the FPV GT is likely to get an update when the facelifted Falcon arrives in 2014, the move to bring assembly of FPV vehicles in-house is likely to spell the death of plans to build a modern GTHO.

Ford Australia may be willing to invest to save FPV, but it’s unlikely it will spend the millions necessary to upgrade the car to handle the proposed GTHO’s awesome power (said to be in excess of 400kW).

As for Prodrive, the company will continue to run Ford Performance Racing and is believed to be in negotiations with Ford to extend its current contract that runs until the end of 2013.

Mears also didn’t rule out a return to road car projects once the FPV handover is complete.

“Prodrive never talks about future product, and I’m not going to start now,” he says. “But I think it’s fair to say we’re always been aggressive in the marketplace... let’s see what happens.”

source: smh.com.au

 

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 Post subject: Re: Ford to take over FPV brand - Prodrive quits
Posted: Thu Aug 30, 2012 1:30 pm 
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http://www.fpv.com.au/content/ford-assu ... e-vehicles

FPV NewsTest Drive an FPV
Thursday, August 30, 2012

Ford assumes sole responsibility for Ford Performance Vehicles
MELBOURNE, Australia (Thursday August 30 2012):

Ford Australia and Prodrive today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for Ford to purchase the assets of FPV required to engineer, manufacture and market the FPV brand in Australia.

•Ford Australia and Prodrive Automotive Technology Asia Pacific Holdings (Prodrive) have entered into an MOU for Ford to purchase the assets of Ford Performance Vehicles (FPV) required to continue engineering, manufacturing and marketing the FPV brand in Australia.
•Development, production and marketing of FPV vehicles will move to Ford Australia’s Geelong and Campbellfield operations.
•Customers will experience no difference to their interactions with the FPV brand.
Negotiations are expected to be completed shortly, with Ford to take responsibility for future activities of FPV from the end of 2012. Ford will become responsible for all future development programs, the manufacture of FPV engines and vehicles, and marketing the FPV brand.

Until now, FPV has operated under a Joint Venture agreement between Prodrive (51%) and Ford Australia (49%). The change follows a review by the partners of the FPV business and both partners concluding the current business situation was unsustainable in the long-term.

“We recognise the passion and dedication of FPV enthusiasts and their desire to see Ford high-performance vehicles available in the market,” said Ford Australia President & CEO Bob Graziano.

“Although this segment of the market is relatively niche, it is an important part of Ford’s performance history and DNA. Both partners have worked hard to ensure the FPV brand can continue to thrive in Australia post the change to our current arrangements.”

Production of FPV engines will move to Ford’s Geelong engine plant, while full vehicle assembly will take place at Ford’s Campbellfield plant. The additional work at both sites will offset the need for a small number of the previously announced redundancies across both sites.

Unfortunately, although Ford can take on responsibility for the FPV brand and in-source the manufacturing and other work, the change will see approximately 32 FPV staff become redundant at the end of 2012. All entitlements and other benefits for those staff will be provided.

“As a result of the business review, Prodrive has made the decision to exit the performance car market at the end of 2012,” said Prodrive Managing Director Bryan Mears.

“We have enjoyed great success through our partnership with Ford Australia and look forward to watching the FPV brand continue to thrive in the future.”

FPV vehicles will continue to be sold through Ford’s dedicated network of FPV specialist dealers Australia. There will be no change to current service and warranty arrangements.

“Our current and future customers should experience little, if any, change to the way they interact with the FPV brand,” said Graziano. “We look forward to continue providing them with the outstanding performance and specialist service they have enjoyed to date.”

 

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 Post subject: Re: Ford to take over FPV brand - Prodrive quits
Posted: Thu Aug 30, 2012 6:01 pm 
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so why didnt the 1001 nobs do the upgrades in the first place,then fpv may have been better.to busy playing pacman?

 

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 Post subject: Re: Ford to take over FPV brand - Prodrive quits
Posted: Thu Aug 30, 2012 6:08 pm 
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funny thing is wasnt there a story about this 2 weeks ago?

 

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 Post subject: Re: Ford to take over FPV brand - Prodrive quits
Posted: Thu Aug 30, 2012 6:34 pm 
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EFNA wrote:
funny thing is wasnt there a story about this 2 weeks ago?

yeah,we are happy with the sales and committed to fpv,related to the redhead-bs.

 

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 Post subject: Re: Ford to take over FPV brand - Prodrive quits
Posted: Thu Aug 30, 2012 7:58 pm 
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uniacidz wrote:
hans hartman wrote:
EFNA wrote:
funny thing is wasnt there a story about this 2 weeks ago?

yeah,we are happy with the sales and committed to fpv,related to the redhead-bs.


Exactly

What a turn around.

on the other side 51% of 0 ==0

 

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 Post subject: Re: Ford to take over FPV brand - Prodrive quits
Posted: Fri Aug 31, 2012 11:42 pm 
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so the chance of the xr8 returning just got a bit better then?
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 Post subject: Re: Ford to take over FPV brand - Prodrive quits
Posted: Sat Sep 01, 2012 12:09 am 
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phatba wrote:
so the chance of the xr8 returning just got a bit better then?


i would say quite the opposite. as fpv sales are so crap ford surely wont try whipping up a xr8 for no sales also. everyone wants fuken priuses now days.

only choice is GS and GTp/e/rspec/special/whatever.. etc.

preety soon no more flacon or xr6T and fpv will be as gone as tickford.

 

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 Post subject: Re: Ford to take over FPV brand - Prodrive quits
Posted: Sat Sep 01, 2012 12:11 am 
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wont they try to recoup their costs on the latest v8 by bringing out either an xr8 or lots of "limited edition" models though?
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 Post subject: Re: Ford to take over FPV brand - Prodrive quits
Posted: Sat Sep 01, 2012 12:23 am 
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yea, the Rspec is one. they are going to keep produceing the normal GT. there will be a couple more limited edidions after the Rspec to dry up stock then all over red rover, or should i say red accented GT.... :(

 

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 Post subject: Re: Ford to take over FPV brand - Prodrive quits
Posted: Sun Sep 02, 2012 1:45 am 
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Benny D wrote:
only choice is GS and GTp/e/rspec/special/whatever.. etc.


GS = poor mans GT = gay

 

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 Post subject: Re: Ford to take over FPV brand - Prodrive quits
Posted: Sun Sep 02, 2012 2:23 am 
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Now... This could be a golden opertunity to really re spark the brand. This is what I would do. I Would Drastically cut the price of the XR6T, Ya gotta be in the traffic for a peasant pack no leather XR6 T for 40k, auto and manul same price. big brakes standard but cut cost on s**t climate ait and stuff, an econo jet if u like. You order the Falcon GT as god intended Limited options. Manual only. 350Kw Leather, power windows. Thats it CUT the fat off it Halve the airbags Aluminium bonnet boot. Ample rubber. limited run of heritage colour combos...4 grand cheaper than clubsport then theres the GT ..P Luxo barge ... you get the picture fat obese auto. Then last ... Lucky last WInd the clock right up on 300 limitied run XR6 HP (High Performance) Carbon fibre bonnet boot Shave the thing of 250 kilos. pump the old girl in her final salute to her max. No warranty on engine. wouldnt that make a stir. Dont release the horsepower figures you get the picture. how many kilowats..... 351.. mix the old ith the new... Then advertise like I was going to go broke (Likely) That this little exersize somehow gains interest in a few more XT s Last chance dance. To a bloody fantastic Aussie Car. LPG Powered... diverse ...Y No Diesel.... Daz
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 Post subject: Re: Ford to take over FPV brand - Prodrive quits
Posted: Sun Sep 02, 2012 8:50 pm 
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Dazmonster wrote:
Now... This could be a golden opertunity to really re spark the brand. This is what I would do. I Would Drastically cut the price of the XR6T, Ya gotta be in the traffic for a peasant pack no leather XR6 T for 40k, auto and manul same price. big brakes standard but cut cost on s**t climate ait and stuff, an econo jet if u like. You order the Falcon GT as god intended Limited options. Manual only. 350Kw Leather, power windows. Thats it CUT the fat off it Halve the airbags Aluminium bonnet boot. Ample rubber. limited run of heritage colour combos...4 grand cheaper than clubsport then theres the GT ..P Luxo barge ... you get the picture fat obese auto. Then last ... Lucky last WInd the clock right up on 300 limitied run XR6 HP (High Performance) Carbon fibre bonnet boot Shave the thing of 250 kilos. pump the old girl in her final salute to her max. No warranty on engine. wouldnt that make a stir. Dont release the horsepower figures you get the picture. how many kilowats..... 351.. mix the old ith the new... Then advertise like I was going to go broke (Likely) That this little exersize somehow gains interest in a few more XT s Last chance dance. To a bloody fantastic Aussie Car. LPG Powered... diverse ...Y No Diesel.... Daz


Some of this rambling has a certain appeal to me

 

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