Source: USA TODAY
LOS ANGELES — Ford will debut a new Edge crossover utility concept Wednesday that is close to the lighter-weight vehicle that will go on sale next year.
The automaker is spending $700 million at the Oakville assembly plant in Ontario to build the 2015 Edge alongside the Lincoln MKX. Ford will export both models.
Design manager Kevin George said the goal was to transform the Edge from a heavyweight boxer to a sprinter — still muscular, but more nimble.
Ford is not yet revealing details about Edge’s engines, but look for a couple of four-cylinder EcoBoost choices and a diesel for Europe. Jim Farley, Ford’s global marketing chief, said there are no plans to offer a diesel in North America. He declined to say if a hybrid is planned.
The new Edge also has an automatic start-stop technology that shuts off the engine when the car is idled.
The Edge competes in one of the market’s hottest segments.
Farley said crossovers now account for 17% of the market and growth outside North America should be greater than overall industry sales going forward.
In the U.S., Ford expects to sell more than 300,000 Edges, which would be a record.
Farley said the three-row Explorer appeals to families and those who might want to go off-road while the two-row Edge is for new families and those with no children.
The Edge will continue to be exported to China, where Farley said forecasts show crossover sales likely will double by 2017.