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NAUTICA VILLAGER MINIVAN TO 'FLOAT' IN RIVER 'PARADE OF LIGHTS,' LAUNCHING FLATSFEST

 CLEVELAND, July 21 /PRNewswire/ -- A Mercury Villager minivan will "float" down the Cuyahoga River Friday night (July 23) -- as part of the "Parade of Lights" to open the annual FlatsFest weekend.
 The vehicle is the new Nautica Villager model, and it will follow the Nautica Queen sightseeing boat that will lead the parade of 75 lighted and decorated boats, co-sponsored by the Lincoln-Mercury Division of Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F).
 The parade, beginning at 9:30 p.m., is the signature event of the three-day FlatsFest, which is expected to draw thousands of spectators into the river Flats area. The illuminated minivan actually will be on a barge pushed by a tugboat for the length of the parade.
 The Nautica Villager is the official vehicle of FlatsFest. The minivan and a number of Lincoln and Mercury cars will be displayed in the Nautica Entertainment Complex and elsewhere on the river banks.
 Joining Cleveland Mayor Michael White for a ribbon-cutting ceremony to open FlatsFest (at 7 p.m. Friday) will be Ben Lever, Lincoln-Mercury Division general marketing manager based in Detroit, and Gifford Brown, manager of Ford's Cleveland Engine Plants and chairman of the company's Cleveland Community Relations Committee.
 Ford is the Greater Cleveland area's largest private-sector employer, with more than 15,000 employees at six area plants and offices.
 The Nautica Villager is Lincoln-Mercury's newest version of the popular minivan made at Ford's Ohio Assembly Plant in Avon Lake. More upscale and sporty, the blue-and-white model was developed in association with Nautica International, Inc., a leading manufacturer of men's sportswear and outerwear based in New York.
 The vehicle is powered by a 3.0-liter V-6 engine with an overhead camshaft and sequential electronic fuel injection. The 151-horsepower engine is paired with an electronically controlled four-speed automatic overdrive transmission.
 Production of the Nautica Villager will begin in August, with Lincoln-Mercury dealership introduction schedule for September.
 -0- 7/21/93
 /CONTACT: Bill Carroll of Ford, 313-322-1300/
 (F)


CO: Ford Motor Company ST: Ohio, Michigan IN: AUT SU:

KE -- DE018 -- 4040 07/21/93 14:22 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jul 21, 1993
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