Fiesta: Built Ford Smart

If you needed a data point to convince yourself that the light truck for non-vocational or need-based use is waning, consider this: Today Ford launched production of the 2011 Fiesta, built on the company's small global car platform, for the North American market in its Cuautitlán plant in Mexico, a facility that has produced more than 2.2 million vehicles during its 45-year history, including the Ford Mustang, LTD, Crown Victoria, Thunderbird, Taurus, Contour, Mercury Grand Marquis, Contour, and Mystique.

If you needed a data point to convince yourself that the light truck for non-vocational or need-based use is waning, consider this: Today Ford launched production of the 2011 Fiesta, built on the company's small global car platform, for the North American market in its Cuautitlán plant in Mexico, a facility that has produced more than 2.2 million vehicles during its 45-year history, including the Ford Mustang, LTD, Crown Victoria, Thunderbird, Taurus, Contour, Mercury Grand Marquis, Contour, and Mystique. Most recently, it has been producing a variety of light- and medium-duty F-Series trucks.

That right: Cuautitlán was a truck plant. Now it is building small cars.

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Clearly, Ford, which for many years has been making serious margins from its trucks, has come to grips with the notion that things are changing in a significant way and so it must be able to competitively—and profitably—produce small cars. Like the Fiesta.