Ford Tempo

The successor to the Ford Fairmont was the Ford Tempo, an American-built two-door coupe and four-door sedan produced by the Ford Motor Company from 1983-1994. When production ended it was replaced by the Ford Contour. In its early years, the Tempo faced competition from the General Motors J-cars and the Chrysler "K-cars". Years later it also had to compete with the Chevrolet Corsica, the Dodge Spirit and the Plymouth Acclaim. The design and life of the Tempo began in the late 1970s as Ford was looking to build towards a more ergonomic, more efficient, and more aerodynamic design philosophy. This new design philosophy was taken up, in part, due to aging vehicle platforms but more so due to the two oil embargoes. These embargoes had led to a rise in more fuel-efficient import vehicle sales, which were hurting the American automakers. Taking note of this, Ford set out to transform the automotive industry, and would later lay the groundwork for three revolutionary vehicles. He had created the prime environment for the 1983 Thunderbird, the 1984 Tempo and the Taurus. By December of 1978, wind tunnel testing began on the Tempo, with more than 450 hours of testing resulting in more than 950 different design changes. This was such a proactive approach that has not been seen in many of the decades since. As part of these changes, the Tempo featured a 60-degree windshield and aircraft-inspired doorframes. These frames wrapped up over the edge of the roof with improved sealing thus allowing for hidden drip rails. After many more alteration and additions, the Tempo was released for sale. When it was launched in 1983 as a 1984 model, it became an instant hit, with more than 107,000 two-door models and more than 295,000 four-door models being sold in the first year alone.