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Ford: The All-New Ford Mondeo

Paris Auto Show 2000

"The all-new Ford Mondeo was developed in a record time of just 24 months. For the first time, we have used absolutely state-of-the-art engineering resources to achieve new levels of precision and quality throughout the vehicle, including its significant new powertrains, class-leading safety systems and a completely new interior. Weíve paid attention to the minute details Ė like xenon headlights, 16-inch wheels, four-wheel disc brakes, available rear-seat entertainment and navigation systems and new standard inflatable side curtain airbagair bags Ė to produce a car with all-around strengths to match its confident stance. Itís fitting that the new Mondeo is the flagship for Ford of Europeís aggressive new product development commitment."

Paul Mascarenas, Chief Programme Engineer

Photos: Ford Motor Company

Its substance is tangible. Its stance is solid and purposeful. Its Intelligent Protection System is comprehensive. Its technology is clearly visible, from its xenon headlights to its sophisticated new engines. And its driving quality and precision are readily apparent.

But, the all-new Ford Mondeo is a virtual reality.

With a powerful array of global resources and a pioneering team prepared to change everything about developing a new vehicle, Ford has achieved its first digitally created vehicle. The new Mondeo is the first product programme developed using the power of Ford's intranet/extranet.



Mondeoís every component was engineered to the minutest technical detail exclusively on computers. There were no drawing boards used to create this new vehicle, as the Ford Mondeo team reinvented how a new car could be developed, shaving 13 months off the development process along the way.

"The significance of the new Mondeo to the future of Ford Motor Company here in Europe cannot be overstated," said Ford of Europe Chairman Nick Scheele. "Our flagship has been the groundbreaker of new technology that will help Ford develop products not only quicker but also better. It is the first of an aggressive new product launch initiative that will see Ford treble its product introduction pace over each of the next five years."

Since the original Ford Mondeo was launched in 1993, more than 2.5 million vehicles have been built for sale in more than 60 markets around the world. It set new standards for its segment in terms of safety, by being the first to offer a standard driverís airbagair bag. Its acclaimed vehicle dynamics were the inspiration for successive Ford vehicles across the model range, most recently the multi-award winning Ford Focus. No stranger to awards itself, Ford Mondeo was voted "European Car of the Year 1994."

Built at Fordís Genk (Belgium) Assembly Plant, Mondeo is Fordís entry in one of the most important market segments in the European industry. The new model has been designed to build on its predecessorís strengths and success, created with Fordís pioneering new product development process.

The new Mondeoís precision and quality were achieved with the help of this revolutionary new integrated engineering tool set and processesmethod, known inside Ford as C3P. It combines a comprehensive range of computer-based tools used to the complex set of systems required to create a vehicle within a global internet-enabled environment Ė including computer-aided design (CAD), computer-aided engineering (CAE) and cComputer-aAided mManufacturing (CAM) and Ė with a vast product information management (PIM) system database that is accessible simultaneously by Ford engineers anywhere in the world.

Instead of the time-consuming task of building physical prototypes to test their new designs, Ford Mondeo engineers built virtual 3D prototypes usinginstead used the high-capacity computer work stations on their own desks to undertake exacting simulations of how their components would work within thein a virtual vehicle. Engineers in England, Germany and even America or Japan worked simultaneously to optimise each component. Even the manufacturing process of manufacturing and assembling the creating a components could be simulated digitally.

Throughout the early stages of its development, Mondeo never left the digital world. When the time came to build the first physical engineering prototype of the all- new Ford Mondeo from these computer designs, it was immediately clear that Fordís future development strategy was a winner.

"We had never seen this level of quality in the prototype stage before," said Mondeo chief programme engineer Paul Mascarenas. "That first prototype came together with absolutely no engineering issues. We went out immediately and drove that first car on the test track, and its driving quality was astounding."

Inspired by the potential of their new C3P tools, Mascarenas and his team created new ways of working that have already had profound impact on Fordís product development process. As other teams working on future products follow their lead, they can see that the reality of Mondeoís all-around strengths is more than just virtual.


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