A team of six engineers from Ford Motor Co. traveled this week from Dearborn to Dubai, where they took apart a 2015 yellow Mustang into six sections and reassembled the vehicle in about 12 hours on the 112th level of the Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest building.
The unveiling — paying homage to the then placement of a 1965 Mustang Convertible atop the Empire State Building, the world's tallest building at the time — follows Ford's decision earlier this year to establish its new Middle East and Africa business unit in Dubai.
"Today we planted the Ford flag in the Middle East and Africa, an exciting, vibrant region that represents the final frontier for growth in the auto industry," says Bill Ford Jr., the automaker's executive chairman. "We also sent a message to the world that Mustang is going global after 50 years as America's greatest motoring icon."
Industry sales in the Middle East and Africa are expected to grow 40 percent to 5.5 million vehicles by 2020. To meet new customer demand, Ford has pledged to launch 25 vehicles in the region by 2016. This includes the all-new Mustang debuting next year as well as the Ford Focus, Ford Fusion, and Lincoln MKC.
The company also plans to roll out many new technologies to the region, including EcoBoost engines, in-car connectivity, inflatable rear seat belts, and other driver assist technologies.
"A century ago Henry Ford had a vision to open the highways to all mankind," says Jim Benintende, president of Ford Middle East and Africa. "Placing our regional headquarters in Dubai lets us tap the innovation and imagination that's flourishing here, helping us to bring our founder's vision to this part of the world."
Wednesday's event was viewed live around the world on YouTube as well as by approximately 10,000 people gathered in the city's downtown area.
"We've taken the new Mustang to new heights of technology and refinement, so taking it literally to new heights atop the Burj Khalifa is an amazing achievement for our team," Benintende says. "There are no cranes that would reach that high, and helicopter delivery is out of the question. Making this happen is truly an example of Ford engineering expertise at work."