The Ford laser was a compact vehicle that enjoyed prominence between 1980 and 2003. While not marketed into the United States, regions of the world such as Africa, South America and Australasia were heavily involved in adopting the Laser as a functional, family-style sedan. The Laser was available in several different versions that included a hatchback, a convertible and even a pick-up variant. These choices often depended on where the vehicle was being marketed.
Due to the fact that the car company Mazda was partially acquired by Ford in 1979, there were many similarities between the Laser and a Mazda variant known as the 323 model. In fact, the two different brands were seen to be in competition with one another. While the Laser was popular in Australia, the opposite was seen to be true in other parts of the world such as Africa and South America. Hatchback versions of the Laser were particularly well-received and this had allowed the model to be one of the most popular choices as a family-oriented vehicle.
One notable fact was that while although the Laser was not directly marketed to the United States, its global popularity still influenced Ford's strategy in the region. The Laser is said to have been the primary influence during the development of the Ford Escort; an extremely popular and well-received model in the United States. While the Laser itself is currently not in production, its influence in multiple markets cannot be denied and as in the case of the Ford Escort, the Laser caused many design changes to later models of Ford vehicles that have continued to this day.