The Ford Escort was killed off in 2002 when the Focus arrived, but the iconic nameplate is set to make a return. UK-based Escort fans shouldn’t get their hopes up too high, however. The Escort Concept, unveiled at the Shanghai Motor Show, hints at a car that – if it ever does arrive — will only be brought back for the Chinese market.
While some argue this revival is a strange move, Ford reckons the Chinese are gagging for a new Escort. The nameplate has always proved popular there, with many classic models regularly imported to the country by car enthusiasts wanting something they consider exotic. The new Escort Concept is designed to appeal to that demographic, as well as those that want a smallish family car with a modern design and lots of interior space.
“By listening to our customers in China, we have developed the Ford Escort Concept to serve a new class of compact car customers,” said Jim Farley, executive vice president, Global Marketing, Sales and Service and Lincoln, Ford Motor Company. “These are customers whose needs are not being completely met by existing compact cars. They are discerning, modern families, who want uncompromised functionality, quality and safety for themselves and the ones they care about.”
The Ford Escort Concept won’t look much like previous Escorts. If anything, it looks like a slightly squashed Mondeo with bits of Focus, Fiesta and B-Max thrown in for good measure. We’ll leave that to you to decide whether that’s a good or bad thing. In the meantime, have a gander at these pictures.