Killed off along with the Falcon a couple of years ago, the Ford Territory is about to make a Lazarus-like comeback in China.
First images of a new, second generation Territory, described as a mid-size SUV with the affordable price-tag — have just been revealed.
Designed primarily to appeal to Chinese tastes, it will slot between the current Ecosport and Kuga in the Chinese lineup.
And, just to rub salt into the wound, the new Territory even underwent testing as part of its development right here in Australia.
Ford developed the Territory together with joint venture partner, Jiangling Motors Corporation (JMC) which markets the Vigus ute here in Australia.
Based on the Yusheng S330, the new Chinese Territory will be assembled at JMC Ford’s plant in Nanchang, China.
“The Territory is a breakthrough for Ford in China in terms of our ability to successfully compete with Chinese automakers for millions of customers that we do not currently serve,” Ford’s Asia Pacific and chairman & CEO, Peter Fleet, said.
“Territory is a key proof point for how we will grow in China. We brought Territory to market with speed, high quality and cost efficiency.
“It will be affordable for young families and new buyers across China, not just the coastal mega-cities. And the technology will delight customers.”
JMC provided insights into Chinese customers’ lifestyles and product preferences, while the Ford team leveraged its global expertise to design, engineer, and test Territory at Ford’s testing centres in Nanjing, China and You Yangs proving ground outside Melbourne, Australia.
The all-new SUV will be manufactured at JMC’s Xiao Lan plant.
Territory customers will be able to choose between a fuel-efficient 1.5-litre turbocharged petrol engine, 48V mild hybrid with Miller-Cycle technology or a plug-in hybrid powertrain when it goes on sale in early 2019.
It will also offer Ford’s infotainment system with intuitive Mandarin voice-command function, Co-Pilot360 suite of driver assistance technologies, incorporating features such as Adaptive Cruise Control and FordPass Connect with embedded modem.
The new Ford Territory is part of Ford’s China 2025 plan to launch more than 50 new vehicles in the country by 2025.