The next C-car variant on Ford’s agenda is a Mercury

Mark Fields, Ford’s president of the Americas said during a speech at the West Michigan Automotive Manufacturing Summit that is planning on making a Mercury variant of its new C-car architecture.

His comments underline the Ford CEO Alan Mulally statement towards Inside Line earlier this week that the company still supported the brand.

“That’s our plan — to continuously improve the Mercury and Lincoln brands,” Mulally said.

Except for the Milan and the aging Grand Marquis, Mercury hasn’t any other passenger car offerings so it better put on the table something – anything – especially a C-car. It will also help Ford held its promise to craft 10 new vehicles from it’s global compact car architecture. So far they have the C-Max and Grand C-Max minivans (launched at the 2009 Frankfurt show – the latter is destined for the U.S.), while the new Focus sedan and five-door hatchback were unveiled at this year’s Detroit auto show.

“Certainly, one will be a Mercury, it’ll give us something to put into showrooms, and help energize the Mercury brand.” said Mark Schirmer, spokesman for Lincoln-Mercury.

There are no details unveiled for the “mini-Merc” so far and no official name. It could be the new Focus or the Lincoln C concept shown at the 2009 Detroit auto show.

The new Mercury model is slated to be unveiled later this year (likely at the Los Angeles auto show), and should go on sale in early 2011, shortly after the 2012 Focus arrives on showroom floors.