GENEVA -- Fords iosis Max concept unveiled here late Monday previewed a multi-purpose vehicle that could find its way to North America. The concept also offered a foretaste of the companys new global design language.
The Focus-sized iosis Max concept hints at a successor to Ford of Europes boxy, 5-year-old C-Max multiactivity vehicle. And its styling elements, such as a coupelike profile and a distinctive lower trapezoidal grille, will probably turn up on Ford's future C-segment vehicles.
The new look builds on what Ford has been doing in Europe in recent years. But it will probably come to America, too, as the company sends more of its small European vehicles across the Atlantic.
The C-Max isnt sold in the United States, but iosis Max project leader Patrick Verhée said a vehicle along the lines of his concept car would be practical in the United States.
Lets see if the market will move in this downsizing direction, but this is the kind of car that could fit in the States, he said on the eve of the Geneva auto show media preview. It is not too small and not as big as the States is used to.
The iosis Max is the third iosis concept from Ford of Europe. The first, a sedan unveiled at the 2005 Frankfurt show, launched the kinetic design, or energy in motion style that Ford of Europe has since employed.
That initial iosis hinted at the styling of what was to become the new Mondeo in 2007. A year later, Ford revealed the iosis X concept vehicle at the Paris show previewing the Ford Kuga crossover sold in Europe.
The iosis Max marks the next stage in the evolution of kinetic design, said Martin Smith, Ford of Europes executive design director.
Stefan Lamm, Ford of Europes chief exterior designer, called it an attempt to use our kinetic design form language to develop a C-segment MAV that was sporty and dynamic.
With its steeply raked A-pillar and novel rear spoiler treatment, the vehicle aims at a sleeker and more aerodynamic profile than other compact mutlipurpose vehicles on European roads. The C-pillars feature what Ford calls a flying buttress design. The pillars act as spoilers, channeling airflow as close as possible to the tailgate glass for improved efficiency.
The pillars work in combination with a centrally mounted spoiler at the rear of the roof structure.