Jim Farley, Ford president of global markets, has confirmed that the company is working on a new compact pickup that will slot in Ford's lineup below the Ranger. According to a report in Automotive News, Farley made the remarks while speaking at the Deutsche Bank Global Auto Industry Conference in Detroit. Farley said that Ford is "investing in more affordable versions of our truck business" and added, "You can expect new nameplates below where we compete today."
This news dovetails nicely with our earlier report that Ford was planning a subcompact pickup to fill the physical and spiritual void left by not only the car-based Ford Courier small pickup, which was sold in countries such as Brazil and Mexico, but also the Mazda-based compact pickup truck that Ford sold in the United States throughout the 1970s and early 1980s.
While we still don't have confirmation on markets in which the new compact pickup will be sold, C/D recently acquired this set of spy photos of a heavily camouflaged small vehicle testing in Michigan. The photographers insist that the vehicle, although clad to resemble a small van, is a small, car-based pickup truck. Additionally, Ford recently applied to trademark the Courier name with the United States Patent and Trademark Office.
As we reported earlier, the new model will share its underpinnings with the latest global Ford Focus compact car. A hybrid model is a possibility. The market for pickups of any size has never been hotter, and if Ford wants to capitalize on the current demand, it'll want to start dropping official teasers as soon as possible.
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