General Aviation. Direct & Unfiltered.


DEARBORN, Mich., July 21, 2010 – Ford Motor Company soars back to Oshkosh, Wis. in 2010, continuing its second decade as the exclusive automotive partner for EAA’s AirVenture Oshkosh, the world’s greatest aviation celebration. The popular Ford Hangar will feature some of the latest advances in automobile technology, as well as many of the industry’s most revered classics, all on the grounds of Wittman Regional Airport in Oshkosh. Ford's commitment in bringing first-rate entertainment and attractions to the annual convention of the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) is unparalleled. EAA AirVenture Oshkosh takes place July 26 to Aug. 1, making Wittman the busiest airport in the world.

EAA AirVenture 2010 will feature 10,000 aircraft, including 2,500 show planes, and is expected to attract nearly 600,000 aviation enthusiasts from more than 70 countries. Adding to the anticipation for this worldwide event, Ford Motor Company plans to make Oshkosh the site of an exciting company product announcement on opening day. Details on the announcement will be released at a later date.

All Ford events and attractions are free and open to all EAA AirVenture attendees. Ford offers a special Partner Recognition vehicle purchase plan to EAA members.

“Showcasing our strong roots in aviation, while honoring the rich history of innovation it has inspired in our vehicles, is something Ford Motor Company looks forward to every year,” said Edsel B. Ford II, a member of Ford’s Board of Directors. “Whether the subject is airplanes or automobiles, EAA AirVenture fans share with Ford an unparalleled passion for cutting-edge technology and engineering prowess.”

Chicago Rocks Opening Day

Ford will present legendary American rock band Chicago as the EAA AirVenture opening day feature performance, free of charge to all AirVenture guests that day. Concert activities will begin at 5:30 p.m., July 26 in AeroShell Square, adjacent to the Ford Hangar. Chicago is one of the longest performing and most successful U.S. pop/rock and roll groups, selling more than 120 million albums worldwide. Over the course of the group’s career, Chicago has charted five No. 1 albums and 21 top ten hits.

Aviation-Inspired One-Off Mustang SR-71 “Blackbird” Auction

Two automotive icons ¬– legendary racer and manufacturer Carroll Shelby, and world-renowned racer, engineer and designer Jack Roush ¬– have come together in their first vehicle collaboration project to join Ford in creating a one-off 2011 Mustang, the aviation-themed SR-71 “Blackbird.” The one-of-a-kind vehicle will be sold at auction July 29 during EAA AirVenture. Proceeds from the sale will benefit the EAA Young Eagles organization, which has provided free introductory flights to more than 1.5 million young people since 1992, while also teaching the value of hard work, personal responsibility and enhanced math and science skills.

The “SR-71” designation holds a dual meaning for the one-of-a-kind, fully-customized Mustang. First, “SR-71” refers to the car’s design and performance-inspired connection with the SR-71 Blackbird, the aircraft that holds all official airspeed and altitude records and is widely regarded as one of the most spectacular planes ever produced. Second, “SR” represents the first collaborative project between Shelby and Roush. Mustang Chief Designer Darrell Behmer led design for the project and Mustang Chief Nameplate Engineer Dave Pericak led the engineering effort.

Ford also has donated a 2011 Mustang GT Convertible to be awarded to one lucky AirVenture attendee in a raffle also supporting the Young Eagles.

Ford Presents the “Fly-In Theater”

Ford Motor Company returns this year as presenting sponsor of the EAA AirVenture "Fly-In Theater." With generous support from Hamilton Watch, the open-air Fly-In Theater will offer evening family entertainment free for attendees. Located adjacent to EAA’s Camp Scholler camping area, each evening at approximately 8:30 p.m., thousands of patrons will watch free aviation-themed movies on the theater’s five-story screen while sitting under the night sky. Each feature will be introduced by a celebrity presenter or legendary aviator. Edsel B. Ford II will serve as host Wednesday, July 28, when the theater welcomes Chesley B. “Sully” Sullenberger III – the heroic pilot who safely landed US Airways Flight 1549 in the Hudson River, saving the lives of all 155 passengers – and his co-pilot Jeff Skiles for the presentation of “Brace for Impact: The Chesley B. Sullenberger Story.”

Cruisin' Legends Collector Car Show

Each day, EAA AirVenture guests can meet proud owners and view some of the world’s most timeless, pristinely restored Ford Motor Company vehicles at the Cruisin' Legends car show on the grounds of Wittman Regional Airport. As part of the show, guests can attend Hot Rod Heaven, the Mustang Stampede, visit the Shelby American Club and Owners, see the Fabulous Thunderbirds or tour the Roush Flight Line display. The show will feature cars from clubs across the Midwest. Clubs attend different days throughout the week. Admission is free for AirVenture guests.

Model T Time

Henry Ford’s Model T revolutionized the consumer automobile industry when it hit the market in 1908. More than 100 years later, thousands of EAA AirVenture attendees will join Ford in
celebrating the innovation by partaking in a parade of fully-functional Model Ts, browsing an incredible collection of the vehicles, and taking rides in any of several Model Ts on site with members of the Model T Ford Club of America. Experience a ride in a Model T on Thursday, July 29 beginning at 10 a.m. at the EAA Museum entrance.

Other Attractions

Visitors to the Ford Hangar, in the heart of the EAA AirVenture campus, will have the opportunity to engage in various interactive exhibits, demonstrating the latest Ford “Smart,” “Quality,” “Green,” and “Safe” innovations, all guided by Hangar Master Narrator “Hank” the Robot. Featured attractions include the Mustang Corral, which contains production and race vehicles, a P-51 Mustang and a mechanical bucking bronco and Western show. The Built Ford Tough Territory will host the Vertical Wind Tunnel and Rock Climbing Wall, while Electric Avenue will display the latest advances in Powertrain technology and offer Active Park Assist "hands-free" parallel parking demos.

The Ford Hangar also will serve as “Autograph HQ” with celebrity aviation enthusiasts and aviation legends and other special guests on site at various times throughout the course of the event, interacting with fans and signing autographs. Personalities scheduled to sign autographs for fans at the Ford Hangar include Carroll Shelby, Jack Roush and many of the Air Show performers. Additionally, Ford Hangar guests will have the opportunity to receive a free “Built Ford Tough” cowboy hat and purchase Ford clothing and other commemorative items.

To stay connected to all Ford EAA AirVenture news, connect with the Ford EAA AirVenture team on Twitter at or visit

For more information on EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2010, visit

Ford and Flight: A History of Firsts

Ford Motor Company’s historical connection to air transportation will be evident throughout the automobile manufacturer’s presence at EAA AirVenture. Ford’s association with flight dates back all the way to the company’s beginnings in 1903, the same year as the Wright brothers’ historic flight. Ford’s history in aviation includes a period in which the company was the world’s largest aircraft manufacturer.

After World War I, having already put the nation on wheels, Henry Ford decided to take the United States into the air, and in 1925 built the first Ford Tri-Motor airplane. The Tri-Motor was the first to be used by the country’s commercial airlines. Nicknamed the “Tin Goose,” it also was the United States’ first all-metal, multi-engine transport. The first Ford Airlines flight took off in 1925 and in 1926 made the first domestic airmail flight for the U.S. Government.

Henry Ford’s efforts paved the way for modern commercial air travel, including the construction of the world’s first modern airport and first concrete runway. Henry Ford also brought the famed assembly line production system to aviation in World War II, as Ford produced one B-24 Liberator bomber per hour at the height of need by Allied forces. In 1984, Henry Ford was enshrined in the National Aviation Hall of Fame, and in 2002, was recognized as one of only 12 aviation pioneers by the U.S. Centennial of Flight Commission.

About Ford Motor Company

Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 176,000 employees and about 80 plants worldwide, the company’s automotive brands include Ford, Lincoln and Mercury, production of which has been announced by the company to be ending in the fourth quarter of 2010, and until its sale, Volvo. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company.