FORD PARTNERS WITH HARD ROCK CAFE TO CELEBRATE 'CRUISIN LEGENDS' AND BENEFIT CHILDREN’S CHARITY



This year marks the 40th anniversary of the Ford Mustang, the 50th anniversary of the Ford Thunderbird and the 50th anniversary of rock 'n' roll music.
Ford is launching the Ford Cruisin' Legends event, to mark the birthdays of these legendary "cruisin'" cars, and raise money for the Children's Charity Coalition.
Ford will bring music legends to the event - Wilson Pickett, Bad Company and Morris Day & The Time - along with the Hard Rock Cafe's "50 Years of Rock" Mobile Tour.
DEABORN, MI, June 5, 2004 - Ladies and Gentleman, start your engines. This year marks milestones in two watershed areas of American culture: fast cars and great music. And Ford's "cruisin' legends" are at the heart of both.

This year marks the 40th anniversary of America's quintessential muscle car, the Ford Mustang, the 50th anniversary of America's prototypical "cruisin'" car, the Ford Thunderbird, and the 50th anniversary of rock 'n' roll music - commemorated by the recording of Elvis Presley's "That's All Right" at the legendary Sun Studio in Memphis, Tennessee on July 5, 1954.

The natural connection between these milestones has inspired Ford Motor Company to create an event celebrating the cultural birthdays, and will help raise money for the Children's Charity Coalition at the same time. The event is called Ford Cruisin' Legends and will take place on August 20-21 in Birmingham, Michigan as part of the annual Woodward Dream Cruise.

On August 20, Ford will bring music legends to the event - including Wilson Pickett, Bad Company and Morris Day & The Time - along with the Hard Rock Cafe's "50 Years of Rock" Mobile Tour, to help raise money for the Children's Charity Coalition.

From the very beginning, muscle cars and music were tied together; an entire generation grew up with rock and roll on the radio, and a hot car in the driveway. "Cruisin' legends like the Ford Mustang and Ford Thunderbird, and great rock tunes simply grew up together, they inspired one another and are part of the same American cultural experience," said Jim O'Connor, group vice president, North America Marketing, Sales & Service. "The Ford Cruisin' Legends event is aimed at celebrating that connection. And what better place to do it than the country's largest one-day automotive enthusiast event, the Woodward Dream Cruise?"

Ford's History in Rock
The list of popular songs referencing Ford vehicles goes back to 1906, with Out in an Automobile, by Collins and Harlan. When the first Ford Mustang rolled off the assembly line in 1964, an American icon was born. The Mustang has been inspiring rockers ever since - ranging from Wilson Pickett's Mustang Sally, to the contemporary Sheryl Crow song Steve McQueen, with McQueen's Mustang Bullitt at the center of the song and the music video. The same is true for the Ford Thunderbird, which inspired a wide range of bands to sing tribute to the car - ranging from the Beach Boys to Quiet Riot, from ZZ Top to the Troggs, from Jo Dee Messina to Booker T. Washington White.

Few companies have produced more products worthy of raising America to song. "Almost everyone's life has been intertwined in some way with a Ford legend: owning a great car, riding in a friend's, singing about one of our great nameplates or seeing Ford vehicles on the silver screen. Ford is a thread in the fabric of our culture," said O'Connor.

Rock Legends, Cruisin' Legends
The lineup of automotive "cruisin' legends" will be matched in kind to the lineup of rock 'n' roll legends Ford is bringing to the event.

"We had to have Wilson Pickett to help celebrate the legacy of Mustang," said O'Connor. "Overall, we have bands that represent something for everyone. Wilson Pickett will meet the needs of those who crave the Motown sound, Bad Company will meet the needs of those who are classic rock fans, and Morris Day & The Time will meet the needs of those who love to dance."

The bands will play as part of Ford's Charity Preview on Friday, August 20 from 6 - 11 p.m. on the main stage in Downtown Birmingham, next to Hard Rock Cafe's "50 Years of Rock" Mobile Tour. The Hard Rock Cafe mobile exhibit will take fans through a journey, combining a retrospective look at rock 'n' roll with the Hard Rock experience - complete with legendary pieces of memorabilia from the past several decades of rock.

"The Ford Mustang, Thunderbird and rock 'n' roll music have made a tremendous impact on American culture," said Brian Siemienas, director of marketing, Hard Rock Cafe. "We are thrilled to be able to bring our multi-city mobile tour, highlighting the history of rock 'n' roll, to Ford Cruisin' Legends."

For the Charity Preview ticket information or to order tickets, please call 248-644-5832. Tickets are $175, and Ford will donate the net proceeds from the Friday celebration to the Children's Charity Coalition.

VIP Tour
Holders of the Ford Cruisin' Legends Charity Event Tickets will be allowed the rare opportunity for a VIP tour of the Saleen Special Vehicles (SSV) facility located in Troy, Michigan. This special VIP Tour will provide the attendee the opportunity to view the facility where the preliminary assembly of the 2005 Ford GT begins. The tour will be 45 minutes in duration and will show a behind the scenes look on how the vehicle's assembly begins. Each ticket will allow for one individual's admission for one time only. No photography will be allowed.

First-Time Concour Event
For the first time, Ford will host a Ford Cruisin' Legends Concour Contest, with Ford's Director of North American Design, Peter Horbury as one of the judges. Vehicles will compete on criteria of design, restoration, executive and showmanship. Winners will be awarded a unique trophy, honoring the achievements of the vehicles. For additional information about the contest, send an email to: cruisinatford.com.

The concour will take place on Saturday, August 21 at 11 a.m.