Ford of Europe Strengthens Leadership In Allergy Friendly Car Interiors


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* All-new Ford S-MAX and new Galaxy receive German TÜV "Allergy Tested Interior" and British Allergy Foundation seals of approval

* Focus and Focus C-MAX already certified

* Ford models are the only vehicles to pass stringent TÜV standards

COLOGNE - April 28, 2006: Allergies are on the rise, a fact that becomes evident this time of year to millions of people who suffer from breathing difficulties. So it's not by accident that the United Nations is calling attention to World Asthma Day on May 2.

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Ford S-MAX

With the all new Ford S-MAX and new Galaxy models, Ford of Europe now offers two further vehicles to the increasing number of consumers looking for allergy friendly products.

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Ford Galaxy

Following the Ford Focus and Focus C-MAX, the new S-MAX and Galaxy are the third and forth vehicles worldwide that have been certified by the German TÜV organization to minimise the allergy risk to the lowest possible level.

"Ford Motor Company takes the impact of allergies seriously. We are leading the industry in providing car interiors that are certified as allergy friendly," said Dr Wolfgang Schneider, vice president, governmental and environmental affairs, Ford of Europe.

"The positive public response to our initiative confirms that we are on the right track. We aim to get as many as possible existing and future vehicle models certified to these TÜV standards – and this at no extra costs for our customers," he added.

The TÜV is an independent, authoritative German testing and assessment organisation that controls and certifies quality standards for industrial and consumer products. An extensive series of scientifically verifiable tests was carried out on the S-MAX and Galaxy, as on the Focus and Focus C-MAX earlier, in accordance with strict TÜV examination procedures. More than 100 materials and components were tested for harmful substances and allergy causing potential. Additionally, all components likely to have direct and prolonged skin contact such as the steering wheel and seat covers, floor mats and seat belts were also dermatologically tested.

Ford development engineers decided to avoid using in these vehicles materials such as latex, chrome and nickel that can provoke allergic reactions in some people. Additionally, the vehicles are equipped with a high-performance pollen filter, which was also tested by the TÜV. The filter effectively prevents pollen – a particular concern for allergy sufferers – from entering the vehicle's interior.

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Ford Fusion C-MAX

In the UK , the new Ford S-MAX and the Galaxy have achieved the British Allergy Foundation's "Seal of Approval," further confirming that the vehicles are "allergy friendly." The Focus and Focus C-MAX are similarly certified.

The TÜV tests involve an extensive analysis of the passenger compartment air quality, examining the concentration of organic substances such as formaldehyde, phenols, phthalates, and solvents. The measurement and assessment criteria are published on the Internet ( www.tuv.com; ID number: 0000007407).