Ford Ka Comes to Fork in the Road


  • 2012 Ford Ka Profile

    2012 Ford Ka Profile

    Ford will decide on the core platform hardware for its third-generation Ford Ka city car early next year. | November 20, 2012

Just the Facts:
  • Ford will decide on the core platform hardware for its third-generation Ford Ka city car early next year — but whether the minicar will ever come to the U.S. is still a question.
  • Ford is choosing between a revised version of the Fiat 500 platform used for the current Ka or a lightened version of Ford's next-generation B-car platform.
  • Bringing the Ka entirely in-house will allow Ford more control over the destiny of the minicar.

LONDON — Ford will decide on the core platform hardware for its third-generation Ford Ka city car early next year — but whether the minicar will ever come to the U.S. is still a question.

Ford is choosing between a revised version of the Fiat 500 platform used for the current Ka or a lightened version of Ford's next-generation B-car platform, part of a modular platform that stretches from the Ford Fiesta through to the Mondeo.

Bringing the Ka entirely in-house will allow Ford more control over the destiny of a model that has enjoyed less success in its second generation. The downside of this choice is that Ford will not then be able to share its development costs with another automaker.

The updated Fiat platform is already used for the U.S. version of the Fiat 500 built in Mexico and the new Panda city car manufactured near Naples, Italy. If Ford opts to stay with Fiat, it's thought that the Ka will continue to be built alongside an updated European Fiat 500 at the company's plant in Tychy, Poland.

Ford has eyed the Ka for U.S. sales in the past, but rejected the move as incompatible with the American preference for large, powerful vehicles. But a version of the Ka sold here could offer competition in terms of fuel economy.

Edmunds says: Is Ford missing out on an opportunity by not selling the Ka in the U.S.?

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