Many consider tattoos as an expression of personality or even a fashion statement. According to the Pew Research Institute, nearly four in 10 Millennials and around 32 percent of Gen Xers have at least one tattoo. Soon, customers for the new 2012 Ford Focus could have their new car “tattooed” in any of the over 200 available distinct vinyl wraps. The designs include racing stripes, geometric patterns and even splashes and swirls.
Interested customers could choose from these car tattoos at www.fordcustomgraphics.com. With just a few clicks, customers can pick the exterior color of their Focus and then pick the corresponding tattoos of their taste. Then, they will be able to see exactly how their choice will look on their new Focus car. All tattoos are made with 3M Scotchprint Personalized Vehicle Graphic Film and wrapped in a clear graphic protection layer.
These tattoos -- installed at Ford dealerships -- include a three-year/36,000-mile limited warranty. The new tattoos, as well as the Web site, were developed for Ford by Original Wraps Inc., which provides on-demand custom graphics to the auto industry. According to Sheryl Connelly, Ford Global Trends and Futuring manager, the migration of tattoos from humans to vehicles is just a natural progression of the craze.
She remarked that vehicle tattoos are not necessarily a desire to stand out from the crowd, but represent more of a desire “not to be lost in the masses." Connelly noted that people are personalizing everything, including cellphones, computers and clothing as well as vehicles. She remarked that the way people identify themselves today may not be the way they would express themselves tomorrow.
She noted that customers could easily change the tattoos on their vehicles as their life situation and style change. Connelly quipped that the new Ford Custom Graphics for the new Focus – which costs between $120 and $470 -- can be easily removed, which should allow younger customers "grow with their car" in a more economical manner. This was confirmed by Tom Stemple, Original Wraps chief executive, who said that these tattoos offer the looks of custom paint at half the cost.
Stemple noted that these tattoos are made to order, which means Original Wraps won’t produce them unless ordered. He said this setup provides Original Wraps the flexibility to keep updating the tattoo designs. Custom Graphics have been available for other Ford vehicles like the Ford Mustang, F-150, Explorer and Fiesta. Since orders are placed at individual dealerships across the United States, it is impossible to track how many tattoos have been sold, although the Web site has an average of 15,000 unique hits per month.
Ford is expected to offer the tattoos for the Focus to be online in mid-January. The US carmaker is expected to commence sales of the new 2012 Ford Focus early next year. It will be available in four trim series – S, SE, SEL and Titanium –11 unique wheel styles and 11 exterior paint colors. Four of the available exterior colors choices are premium paints. Tri-coat paints -- offering deeper, richer color – will be offered in White Platinum and Yellow Blaze, while two tinted clearcoat paints will be available in Red Candy and Blue Candy.