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Donde Esta La Fiesta?

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On: Fri, Jun 18, 2010 at 2:30PM | By: John Welch

Donde Esta La Fiesta?

"Summer Release" is rather arbitrary phrasing. Here in Florida, the word "Summer" could refer to July; it could also mean March or September. Ford unleashed a doozie of a marketing campaign on Americans last year, doing anything it could to get publicity for the upcoming "Summer 2010" release of the US-ified Fiesta. Ford tried everything from grinding a Fiesta into dust to straight up giving them to hoity-toity post-grad movers and shakers. It worked. We all know what the Fiesta is and plenty of us want one. Now where in the eff are they?

According to Ford, they are right on schedule. Ford began shipping the cars this week from an assembly plant in Mexico. On Ford's Fiesta Facebook page, some customers awaiting their pre-ordered car vented about it being at least two weeks late. One complained of Ford's lack of communication about the holdup. Ford insists both accusations are inaccurate.

“We've been very transparent with our customers who've made pre-orders,” said Angie Kozleski, a Ford spokeswoman. “We have a reservations call center and a reservations hotline. In the case of this vehicle, there's been a lot of communication with them.”

Ford has approximately 2,000 early orders for the car. Ford's Kozleski said those are orders from customers who put cold, hard cash down to buy the Fiesta.

Dealers can track their orders through a computer system and get approximate delivery dates. One dealer, who requested anonymity, said the six Fiestas he had ordered were supposed to arrive a week ago. He said the cars have not been released for shipping yet. He doesn't have any pre-orders, so no customers are complaining yet. But he would like to start selling the cars soon. The Fiesta will arrive in showrooms in the “next several weeks”—ikely to dealerships in the South and Southwest first, Kozleski said. “We are not late. We've said summer,” Kozleski said. “We have processes in place, and we make sure our vehicles are of the highest quality when they leave the plant. They are on their way to dealers.”

Ford better hurry it up, they have some stiff competition on the way to market. The Chevy (ahem, "Chevrolet") Cruze is due to go on sale by the end of the "Summer" and several revamped A-segment cars are coming from other manufacturers, such as Toyota and Volkswagen. Is this as bad as an ill-advised name change or a gas pedal with a death-wish? Not quite, but anything can be spun in a negative light these days; Ford might want to go ahead and fill these orders before public opinion goes all "HondaFacebook" on them . . .

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