Ford celebrates 10 million Mustangs

The Mustang, a cult car of the Ford brand and a symbol of American culture, is set to hit the milestone of 10 million vehicles assembled at its factory in Detroit, the historic capital of the automobile.

This vehicle, celebrated in the movies, in music and recognized throughout the world as a flagship cultural object of America, will be entitled to a big party at the Ford headquarters in the State of Michigan.

The celebration comes at a key moment for the manufacturer: Mustang sales fall in the United States but accelerate in foreign markets, such as China or Germany.

To celebrate this milestone in the history of this iconic vehicle, which takes its name from the wild horse crisscrossing the American West, Ford is appealing to American nostalgia.

"I can not think of any other American car than the Mustang to immortalize the love story that the Americans had with the automobile," says AFP John Heitmann, an automotive historian at the University of Montreal. Dayton, Ohio.

The first Mustang model was introduced in the spring of 1964 in New York. The journalists responsible for covering the world of the car were present and the young Bob Merlis too. As a car historian, he remembers:

"People were so excited about this car (...) it was a kind of freedom vehicle. It embodied him.

Ford has played in the past on the nostalgia factor: last January the manufacturer presented a limited edition of his model called Mustang Bullitt, named after the famous film released in 1968 in which Steve McQueen crisscrossed the streets of San Francisco, driving of a Mustang.

For Wednesday's party, Ford wants to put loyalty in the spotlight by exhibiting the first ever Mustang ever owned by the original buyer.

"Our goal is to have every 54 years represented," a spokesman for the automobile group told AFP. "It's obviously a big day for us."

The Mustangs will move from the company headquarters in Dearborn, a suburb of Detroit, to the Flat Rock factory where they are assembled.

This celebration is part of a strategic decision by the auto giant that actively promotes its sports icon.

If Ford has sold only 81,000 Mustangs in 2017 on US soil, 0.5% of the market, according to the firm Autodata, the vehicle seduced abroad.

Since Ford started exporting it in 2015, the Mustang is the world's best-selling sports car.

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