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From Automotive News via AutoWeek
http://www.autoweek.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080331/FREE/123903851/1530/FREE
The 2009 Ford Flex will go on sale in June, said Kate Pearce, Flex marketing manager. But don't expect kids and dogs to show up in the advertising, even though the Flex is roomy enough to haul around the paraphernalia of modern-day families.

Instead, Ford will try to position the Flex as a trendsetting vehicle for people wanting a stylish ride. The automaker will reach out to urban and suburban consumers alike, even those without children, Pearce said.

"There's much more to this vehicle when you look at it rather than just narrowly defining it as a family crossover," she said. "It is the style that draws people to this vehicle. Good or bad, it evokes an emotion."

The marketing strategy is a departure from the positioning that Ford initially developed for the Flex. The agent of change? Ford's new marketing chief, Jim Farley.
Yeah, brilliant stuff. Read the full article it's interesting. I think automakers see a potential hit, get some good feedback early on and then just lose the plot. I ranted on the idea here.
 

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I may not be right, but even with advertising it as a stylish people mover, the families who need it will still find it. It has been the case with other previous 'hip' cars that although they are marketed towards younger demographics, it still ends up mostly in the hands of older people, such as the xB. Maybe Ford feels that the marketing is necessary to draw in the younger buyers while the older buyers will still be interested, even if they aren't directly called out in the marketing scheme.
 

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Maybe Ford will have better luck with this technique than Mercedes did with the "R" class. The Flex is interesting looking but may not be main stream enough for volume sales. It is a risk on Ford's part and I hope it pays off because they could use the business.
 
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