âStangersâdiehard fans of the Ford Mustangâwill have already seen it due to leaks of the official photographs half a day ago. Lucire ran the leaked photos on our Facebook page. But now, we can officially talk about the unveiling, in six cities around the worldâNew York, Dearborn, Michigan, Los Angeles, Shanghai, Sydney and Barcelonaâof the 2015 Mustang, codenamed S550, which commemorates the model line’s 50th anniversary.
Executive chairman Bill Ford was present at the Barcelona event, in front of an audience of 2,500 journalists, dealers and Ford employees.
While the Mustang has officially been on sale in Europe and other markets before since the original model was released in New York on April 17, 1964, the 2015 model is the first which will be sold as a “world car”, as part of Ford’s core range.
Ford notes that the Mustang is its most iconic range, and that it is the world’s most-liked vehicle on Facebook. Nine million have been built since the original’s launch.
Stephen Odell, executive vice-president for Ford in Europe, Middle East and Africa, said in a release, ‘The Mustangâs formidable reputation for performance and its iconic status as a symbol of freedom and optimism precedes it even in those parts of the world where the car has never been sold. The new Mustang epitomizes Fordâs aggressive product acceleration; technologically advanced and forward-looking, but without forgetting the heritage that has inspired Ford customers for generations.’
The new model certainly lives up to the promise. It has the classic Mustang proportions and blends them with Ford’s present design language.
The design language has been seen on other global products such as the facelifted B299 Ford Fiesta and the CD391 Ford Fusion, which will be sold in Europe and other markets as the Ford Mondeo. It is an evolution of some of Ford’s earlier design principles.
The grille opening apes that of the Fiesta and Fusion, but appears in a more exaggerated form, with the Mustang horse placed in the centre, as with the original, the Mustang II, and the models dating from the 1994.
There are also shades of the ItalDesign Ford Mustang concept of 2006, which brought some Italianate touches, such as a tapering cabin.
The rear lights also reflect the classic Mustang ideas, with the tri-bar design that also harks back to the original.
Ford has also injected the rear-wheel-drive Mustang with the latest technologies, equipping the pony car for the 2010s and beyond.
Technologies include Ford’s Sync with voice control and eight-inch touchscreen (in Europe), and drivers can adjust between driving modes.
The convertible has an insulated cloth top, which has a sleek profile when folded, according to Ford.
Moray Callum, Ford’s executive director of design for the Americas, said, ‘You only get one chance to make a first impression and when you see this car, you immediately see a Mustang strong and true.’
Inside, the Mustang has an aviation-inspired cockpit, designed for the driver, and there is more space, thanks to a wider cabin and an all-new rear suspension. The cockpit again blends modern and classic: the two large dials hark back to the original, but the look is more geometric and structured.
The boot can now accommodate two golf bags, thanks to the new platform.
The suspension brings Mustang bang up to date. The front has double ball-joint Macpherson struts, while the rear gets rid of its agricultural live rear axle in front of an integral-link independent suspension. The Mustang promises to be a far better drive than the models of old, suiting worldwide markets. Ford’s stability control includes torque vectoring.
Engines are the classic five-litre V8 (with 426 PS and 529 Nm of torque) and a new EcoBoost 2Âˇ3-litre four delivering 309 PS and 407 Nm. The automatic model has steering-wheel-mounted shift paddles.âJack Yan, Publisher
Mini knows it’s on to a good thing, especially when it has 2Â˝ million customers worldwide for the fashion-led 21st-century models released under BMW.
With the launch of the fourth-generation Mini, BMW has stuck with the fashion image, with Poppy Delevingne, fashion designers Henry Holland and Amy Molyneaux, Peaches Geldof, Ellie Goulding, Pips Taylor, Zara Martin, Laura Bailey, Made in Chelseaâs Kimberley Garner and Diego Bivero-Volpe, Nik Thakkar, Kelly Eastwood and Jaime Winstone, Lianne La Havas, Ella Catliff, and Sugababe Jade Ewen at the after-party, giving it some style cred.
The earlier unveiling had taken place in Oxford at the BMW plant, where the original 1959 Mini was built when the factory was owned by the British Motor Corporation.
The Monday night after-party at the Sorting Office in London saw 500 guests at the event, where Goulding even worked the DJ decks before Fenech Soler performed an hour-long set. Little Dragon DJ then took over through to Tuesday midnight.
The party continues today in Los Angeles at the Kim Sing Theater, with 175 guests invited, and Passion Pit performing live.
The finalĂŠ will take place in Shanghai, with 200 guests on Thursday at the Waterhouse in South Bund. Gossip and Beth Ditto will perform live.
The global launch of the new F56 Mini will take place in the first quarter of 2014.
More proof that the economic focus is heading east: IWC Schaffhausen has made its first appearance as a sponsor of the Beijing International Film Festival.
The brand, which already has relationships with Kevin Spacey, Cate Blanchett, Jean Reno and Marc Forster in the occident, and Francis Ng, Julian Cheung and Anita Yuen in the orient, found it natural to extend its sponsorship to the Festival, holding a dinner, entitled ‘For the Love of Cinema’, at the Ming Dynasty city wall in Beijing.
Ng, Cheung and Yuen attended, along with actors Yu Nan, Joseph Chang, Li Zonghan, Andrew Lien and Xiong Naijin, as well directors Zhang Yimou, Chris Wedge, Chris Brown, Li Shaohong and Xue Xiaolu. IWC CEO Georges Kern and Benoit de Clerck, its AsiaâPacific managing director, played host. The event was supported by the Motion Picture Association.
The IWC Filmmaker Award was presented at the event to Zhang Yimou by de Clerck and IWC marketing and communications’ director Karoline Huber.
Huber said, ‘Zhang Yimou doubtlessly belongs to the greatest film-makers of our time, and he has won numerous awards and gained recognition at many national and international film festivals. It is an enormous pleasure for us to present him with this award.’ He was also presented with IWC’s latest Portuguese Chronograph Classic in stainless steel, with a special engraving on the reverse.
Aloe Blacc also held a private concert at the event, with DJ Miles Slater taking the party into the small hours.
Above left Christian Dada. Above right Vivienne Tam.
Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Tokyo wrapped up Sunday as cherry blossoms bloom in Japanâs capital. Over the last couple of seasons, Tokyo Fashion Week kept its target on European and Japanese buyers and audiences, but this season, it has eyed the growing Asian market, especially China. It makes sense since Chinese consumers have now become the worldâs leading buyers of luxury goods.
Japanese fashion brand Christian Dada was the fashion week opener for the autumnâwinter 2013â14 collections. Christian Dadaâs designer, Masanori Morikawa, is known as a stage costume designer for the American pop singer Lady Gaga during her Born This Way Ball 2012 tour. Morikawa has been showcasing his signature style with a rebellious yet silent dark beauty, but this season he got inspiration from a Chinese mythological bird called the fenghuang (phoenix), which is the theme of his collection. Leather jackets and pants are mainly in black and white with blue, red and gold patterns representing the fenghuang. The most memorable moment of Morikawaâs show was definitely his signature tall boots with bird wings.
Chinese-born designer Vivienne Tam held a special runway show during Tokyo Fashion Week to celebrate the 15th anniversary of her brand in Japan. Tam presented the same collection she first showed at New York Fashion Week for the lunar New Year. Chinese calligraphy added unexpected twists in her latest collection in a modern and punk-like way, which successfully engaged with the fashion-savvy Japanese audience.
Johan Ku, a Taiwanese designer, presented his signature knit collection. This season, Ku revealed the sexiness of a womanâs silhouette, with the theme of Anna, the female lead in the 1992 movie Damage. Unlike his last several collections, this season was full of pieces that showed off plenty of skin using holes, fringes, and asymmetric necklines. They all look randomly placed but are well calculated, demonstrating Kuâs skill of knit-work, boosted since his last collection.
Japanese veteran designer Hiroko Koshino was one of the highlighted designers at Tokyo Fashion Week, presenting her collection on the last day. She also eyed the growing Asian market as she presented her new âeast meets westâ look. In her collection, Floral Memories, it was not just flower-patterned dresses that walked down the runway. Her floral inspiration was everywhere: from texture of fabric, colour choice and make-up, to draping and rounded silhouettes on each of her looks. The natural phenomena of flowers were represented in an artistic form, rather than the romantic image which many designers use.
Since the Great East Japan Earthquake, Japan has been investing a full effort to shift its gear towards marketing its brand outside the country, especially to the growing Asian market. There are still criticisms that Tokyo Fashion Week is marketing internally, while the fashion-savvy audience in Japan is interested in street fashion, which they call ‘real clothes’, as opposed to high fashion from the runway. Tokyo Fashion Week continues to tackle those challenges, and the next several seasons will be key to turning things around, to become a new trend-setting global destination.âYuka Murai, YM Biz & Media
Japan Fashion Week Organization
Above left Johan Ku. Above right Hiroko Koshino.
Yuka Murai of YM Biz & Media is a correspondent for Lucire.
Otago Polytechnic graduate Rakel Blom won the ID International Emerging Designer Awards last night in Dunedin, with a collection that tapped into the Zeitgeist of global communities and cross-cultural connections.
Blom, who originally hails from Iceland, told Lucire, ‘My biggest passion is travelling,’ and that she had ventured through Asia and Europe before studying in New Zealand.
That passion saw her design seven garments, one for each continent, although only five were required by the competition. Consequently, Oceania and Antarctica were omitted.
The collection was called The World through My Eyes, and featured prints with designs representing each continent. It had been inspired both by travel and textiles. Judges called it ‘eclectic and joyful, sleek, chic and professional, with intricate detailing and true depth.’
In a release, Assoc Prof Karen Webster, guest judge for the competition, said, ‘It absolutely had the “wow factor” but also real depth. There was incredible intricate detailing, including hand-made buttons, stars cut out of Perspex mixed with bold inspirational prints. The collection was a discovery waiting to be made.’
Blom speaks highly of her Alma Mater but despite the win, which includes a NZ$5,000 prize from Peroni, she says her next focus is to ‘find a job.’
Blom’s collection was the crowd favourite at the Edgar Sports Centre, helped by the support of a local crowd. She competed with designers from Ireland, England, China and Australia.
Judge Stephen Jones, OBE, the famed milliner, said that the key themes for the evening were ‘diversity, globalism and everything made to a perfect degree.’
The 1,300-strong audience included two High Commissioners and a consul, cheering on the UK, Australia and China. It was hosted by Shannon Ryan.
China’s contribution also included 10 international models from the University of Shanghai Engineering Science. Aliana McDaniel led the make-up team backstage for Revlon.
A full report from ID Dunedin Fashion Week will follow in Lucire.âJack Yan, Publisher
Peroni 1st Place Prize (NZ$5,000): Rakel Blom, School of Design, Otago Polytechnic, Dunedin, New Zealand.
CaffĂ¨ LâAffarĂ¨ 2nd Place (NZ$3,000 cash): Emma Boseley, Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, Australia.
Strawberry Sound 3rd Place (NZ$1,000 cash): Kathleen Choo, University of Technology, Sydney, Australia.
Dunedinâs Golden Centre Mall Prize (NZ$1,000) for the most commercial collection: Blathnaid McClean, National College of Art and Design (NCAD), Dublin, Ireland.
Global Fabrics Award for Excellence in Design (NZ$1,000 cash and a NZ$2,000 voucher): Sohong Lim, Auckland University of Technology, New Zealand.
Above Sophisticated and well thought-out, this season had to be one of our favourite collections from Ralph Rucci.
If you missed them when they were streaming live, more edited videos from Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York’s fall 2013 collections are now inânamely the remainder of day four: Vivienne Tam, Lela Rose, Nina Skarra, David Tlale, Ralph Rucci, Diane von Furstenberg and Emerson. Plus the first of the day five ones have been filed: ICB by Prabal Gurung is at the end of our collection of videos.
For those following our Twitter account, you would have know when Vivienne Tam was showing, with a collection celebrating the lunar New Yearâa nod to Tam’s ethnic rootsâbut she kept enough mainstream appeal for her US buyers. There was plenty of auspicious red on the set, and on the clothes themselves, with black, white and blue as accents and contrasts. Tam played on the Mao military theme, as well as Chinese ideographs, but one of her fun prints featured President Obama, wearing sunglasses, a reference to modern pop culture. Tam insists the move was not political, and only reflected what was going on in the world.
Lela Rose, meanwhile, referenced the Brothers Grimm for her collection, one that was girly and feminine and delighting in its details. Think flowing, light organza for evening, and textured jacquard and wool for day, as you go down to the woods. Norwegian designer Nina Skarra’s autumnâwinter 2013â14 woman is more flirty, and she kept within a narrow colour palette, largely of red, white and black.
David Tlale, who, like Skarra, opted for a presentation, showed a strong but elegant vision for autumn: sharp shoulders and well tailored coats contrasted with tulle and golden huesâwith the odd dash of red.
Ralph Rucci gave us another sophisticated season, though with a simpler, more relaxed approach. He used colour to surprise and delight, especially with bright mink coats (purple was the colour that jumped out for us), and we were impressed with his use of leather, cashmere and silk. Overall, Rucci was happy to have a more nuanced look, with simpler silhouettes, and left us to appreciate the detailing, surfacing, and accessoriesâincluding transparent PVC boots. This was a ten out of ten from Mr Rucci, with one of our favourite collections from him to date.
Diane von Furstenberg took us back to the 1970sâspecifically Studio 54. For von Furstenberg, who frequented the club, it is about drawing on her own first-hand memories, mixed in with her own inspiration, a trip to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, and David Bowie. Dubbed Glam Rock, with disco music accompanying the models, we saw wrap dresses, plenty of metallic (copper and gold) lamĂŠ, maxi dresses, jumpsuits, and animal prints.
Finally, to round off our day four videos, Jackie Fraser-Swan, the designer of Emerson, showed an extremely tasteful fall collection, with a good use of wool and leather, in shades of burgundy, mustard, grey and black.
Panos Emporio has announced that one of the contestants in next week’s Top Model Sverige will become its new model for 2013.
In next week’s episode on Sweden’s TV3, the 10 models will be photographed by Nigel Barker, with one winner being adopted by the swimwear label for a future campaign.
Filmed at the end of last year, Panos Emporio boss Panos Papadopoulos flew to Los Angeles for the show. It is the sixth season of the Swedish licensed version of the programme.
Staying with Swedish companies: in another nod to corporate social responsibility, Hennes & Mauritz has announced it has developed a water strategy in association with WWF.
As part of a three-year global partnership, H&M says it will build water into its corporate planning, including ‘being a good neighbour and good steward of shared resources,’ says WWF International’s director-general, Jim Leape.
WWF had evaluated H&M’s water usage and challenges through 2012 to form the basis of the strategy. In 2013, the company plans to implement it globally, working with public policy-makers, NGOs, water institutions and other companies, to support better management of river basins in China and Bangladesh, it says. It will also support WWF conservation projects in the Yangtze River basin.
Internally, staff will receive training on the water impact on raw material production and its value chain. It will also improve its water efficiency and minimize its suppliers’ impact on water. The company is targeting all 48 national markets and reaching all 750 direct suppliers, with all its 94,000 employees receiving education on water issues.
Finally, the Peninsula Hotels has announced a new campaign for all its properties, called Peninsula Moments. The campaign shows what is distinctive about each one of its properties, from stunning architecture, authenticity, design, to insight. Unsurprisingly, the clip from Hong Kongâarguably the most famous Peninsula propertyâfeatures its fleet of green Rolls-Royces, while Bangkok shows off its nearby temple and Shanghai its aviation lounge.
Above The Peninsula Hong Kong Rolls-Royce fleet and its pool.
Above The Peninsula Shanghai Aviation Lounge. The Peninsula Manila’s lobby. A temple in Bangkok, near the property.
Continuing to have its eye on the Chinese markets, Carrera y Carrera has released a series of snake-themed jewellery. Its Serpiente Maxi and Serpienti Mini pendants have been available in time for the lunar New Year. The designs have the Carrera y Carrera matt-shine effect, a voluminous look and sculptural style, says the company.
As usual for a western company talking up its Chinese connections, Carrera y Carrera talks about the characteristics of people born under the year of the snake (‘Sensitivity, luxury, wisdom and good fortune’) as though they apply across the board.
The New Zealand Opera will perform Puccini’s Madama Butterfly, in a production created by Kate Cherry, in Auckland’s Aotea Centre on April 18, 20, 24, 26 and 28, and Wellington’s St James Theatre on May 11, 14, 16 and 18. It stars soprano Antoinette Halloran in the title role, tenor Piero Pretti as Pinkerton, and English baritone Peter Savidge as the Sharpless. It will be performed in Italian with English surtitles. Tickets can be booked via the New Zealand Opera box office on 0800 NZ-OPERA, the Edge (for Auckland tickets) at 0800 289-842 or www.buytickets.co.nz, or Ticketek (for Wellington) on 0800 TICKETEK or www.ticketek.co.nz.
Without warning, Ford Models will close its only Canadian office in Toronto, with its director Cathy Le Drew telling The Toronto Star that it was a decision from its head office in New York. There are 250 models on the Toronto website’s roster. Malin Ă kerman (below) had once been represented by the Toronto office.