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Ford Mustang to gallop into Australia with brand power

New rein: With more than 3300 screen appearances and a sizeable social media following, the Ford Mustang has a ready-made reputation around the world.

Australia’s first Mustang will sell on the back of a 50-year reputation, says Ford

Ford logo27 Sep 2014

By DANIEL GARDNER

WITH Ford’s Mustang poised for its Australian debut, the global car giant says the two-door muscle car’s success will be underpinned by vast global awareness built over the icon’s 50-year history.

It says that while many newly introduced models must prove their credentials on arrival, the Mustang already has a strong reputation built over many years of popular culture appearances in all 120 countries where the new global model will be sold, including Australia.

Australia is already home to one of the largest populations of Mustangs outside the United States, thanks to private imports, and Ford says this paves the way for official sales.

At the global launch of the 2015 Mustang, Ford North American marketing manager Steven Ling told GoAuto that while he “certainly hoped” some Australian buyers would come from would-be and existing Falcon XR8 buyers, most would be longstanding fans of the pony-badge.

“Obviously there’s a familiarity with the brand, and I absolutely think that will be the case,” he said. “But I hope that it’s going to attract other people as well.

“You usually don't have to explain Mustang to somebody. They already have a strong sense of what it is and what they like. People understand this is the personality “One of the things that’s really worked in our favour is the number of classic Mustangs that have been brought in to Australia – it’s staggering.

“The Mustang clubs in southern California have been made rich by Australians.

There is a cottage network that is always looking for new ones that are in good shape in good specifications.

“If you’ve got a 69 Boss 302 you're going to be one of the first people to line up at the door and say ‘I’d like to have a new one’, especially now it’s a proper right-hand drive.

“If you can leverage that base then they become your best applicants.”

But the new Mustang will also target fans who have never owned a classic example and have become interested in the brand through its exposure in a long history of multi-media.

Film, music and even social media have driven the Mustang to international notoriety. Ford says 55 per cent of Mustang Facebook followers are outside the US.

“Iconic movies like Bullet, Gone In 60 Seconds, all the Bond films, Need For Speed - in total over 3300 that Mustang has been in,” he said.

“That global appeal actually really helps Ford, and Mustang ranks in the top 10 vehicles with the most influence on Ford’s branded perception.

“You see this all over the world, including countries where we haven’t even sold the vehicle.”

Ford’s confidence in the Mustang’s brand power does nt seem misplaced, with Australian dealers reporting more than 13,000 expressions of interest so far.

The new Ford Mustang will arrive in Australia in the middle of next year. Exact timing, local pricing and specification will be announced closer to the Down Under debut.

Both fastback and convertible versions of the Mustang will arrive in Australia with a choice of either 5.0-litre V8 GT or 2.3-litre EcoBoost power, coupled to either six-speed manual or automatic transmissions.

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