In the last installment of our TransSport 2014 coverage, we ended with a couple of exciting prototypes from Factor Aurelio, as they set out on a journey to build the first all-Filipino supercar. Today we start off with an American automotive institution: the Ford Mustang, and there were a lot of them at TransSport 2014.
When the Mustang came on the scene in 1964, Ford’s Mercury division wanted a cut of the action. Because, however, of parent Ford’s uncertainty with the Mustang until after its launch, Mercury’s Cougar didn’t make its debut until 1967. What emerged was a luxurious coupe that had the same underpinnings as the Mustang but with more size, more luxury, more comfort and a tad less sportiness. The Cougar was initially marketed as the car for the “man on his way to a Thunderbird”, the Thunderbird being the most luxurious non-Lincoln two-door Ford was making at the time. As a Mercury, it was at the top of the heap. As part of the Ford product family, it was more than a little lost, like the rest of the Mercury brand eventually turned out to be.
This year marks a very special occasion for the Philippine motoring industry: the tenth anniversary of the Manila International Auto Show. MIAS is special because it’s a manufacturer’s playground; private clubs and related businesses still figure, but here the focus is on what you can drive out of a showroom in the near future. MIAS, then, is a very good barometer of what the big car companies think of Philippine motorists in general, and with MIAS 2014 marking the tenth anniversary – along with the entry of some interesting brands in the country – it’s definitely going to be a good one.