Ford’s future small and mid-sized cars will share common vehicle platforms across the globe and will be the keystone of CEO Alan Mulally’s strategy to help shed costs and turn around the fortunes of the struggling carmaker. The first of these new global cars will be the next-gen Fiesta hatch, which is being previewed by the Verve concept debuting at next month’s Frankfurt Motor Show.

Other cars to be based on new global platforms include the next Ford Focus and Fusion sedans. Coming into the new role as CEO last September, Mulally was shocked to see how much overlapping work there was within the Ford Empire and immediately set about streamlining the development of new models. Part of the process is to reduce the number of platforms by up to 40% within the next five years. This will leave Ford with 10 platforms on which 70% of its future lineup will be based on.

According to suppliers, the new global Focus should bow in around 2010 or 2011 and will be followed soon after by the replacement for the mid-sized Fusion. The car’s styling and equipment will be customized to suit individual markets, one official told Automotive News.