When the next incarnation of the Ford Mondeo sees the light it will look a lot like this, says Ford's head of design, J Mays.

When the next incarnation of the Ford Mondeo sees the light it will look a lot like this, says Ford's head of design, J Mays.

Mays, speaking at the unveiling of the 427 saloon at the Detroit Motor Show, said: "We will experiment with this car’s front-end look to create the new Mondeo."

According to the design guru, Ford has just started work on the look of the next car, and apparently the so-called “new face of Ford” will get a strong dose of retro, typically-American saloon styling.

"We know where we are going with it, and we want it to be revolutionary rather than evolutionary. We have done our homework in the past five years, and we have got a very good reputation with the Ford brand," Mays said.

"We have worked hard, and now we want to start being more overt and make a real strategic statement," he added.

Mays was quoted as saying that he wanted the new Mondeo to replicate the huge styling leap (also known as New Edge Design) that came about when the Focus was launched in 1998. He added: “We plan to get a big dose of Ford in there."

The Mondeo has been on the South African market since last year, but its successor won't come to fruition until 2006.

The Focus was launched in South Africa in 1999 and recently also in saloon form. When the Focus first appeared, it showcased Ford’s optimistic “New Edge Design” and next month, its successor will be shown in concept form at the Geneva Motor Show in March, and then debut in production guise at Frankfurt in September.

Mays said that customers shouldn't expect too many big changes for the Focus, as the newcomer will be an evolution of the current model.