Jamal Hameedi has a pretty cool reason to show up for work each day: “To make the greatest performance vehicles available on the market, regardless of price.” You’re probably wondering exactly what kind of gig Jamal must have if he gets paid to think about performance vehicles. He’s the Global Performance Vehicle, Chief Engineer for Ford, which means, “I get to play with fast cars and trucks for a living.”
Jamal has worked on various projects, including the Ford GT in 2002, which he described then as the most technological program he’d worked on to date. “Instead of taking an already existing platform, we had complete control of it within SVT.” He and his team also were behind the 2011 Shelby GT500. Jamal has to be certain every one of the performance vehicles under his watch meets its engineering, manufacturing, business and timing objectives. Therefore, he works closely with engineers and designers to create not only a good-looking vehicle, but one that can back up that appearance with true grit. “Our performance philosophy touches every detail of our ST and SVT vehicles,” Jamal added.
“We spend a lot of time developing a global performance DNA, a recipe, if you will, of our performance cars,” he explained. “There are a lot of very technical requirements for steering, handling, ride, NVH, performance, horsepower and torque in all the vehicles we develop.”
Jamal said that he and his team want to make outstanding all-around performance cars, “not just stoplight-to-stoplight sprinters.”
His love of sports cars started when he was a child, and that same glee and awe are still in him even today. “We’re creating a car that’s not only beautiful, but one that has to perform as well. That process – seeing something go from an idea, to something an assembly plant makes day in and day out – is extremely rewarding.”