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Posts Tagged ‘Ford’

2018 NAIAS: 2018 Ford EcoSport

January 15th, 2018 No comments

 

You’d be forgiven for thinking that Ford’s smallest crossover is the Escape. The new for 2018 EcoSport sounds more like an engine option or trim package than a separate model. What should not be a suprise is that Ford has slipped this small crossover into it lineup. Intended to do battle with the likes of the Buick Encore, Chevy Trax, Honda HR-V, Mazda CX-3, and Toyota C-HR the EcoSport starts at an accessible $19,995. Base power comes from a 1.0L turbo engine that Ford seems reluctant to mention is a 3-cylinder or its power output. It is paired to a 6-speed automatic. Most buyers will likely step up to the 2.0L engine, which actually maintains the same 29 mpg highway EPA rating as the 1.0L but suffers with a city ration of 23 mpg vs. 27 mpg for the 1.0L. Power likely isn’t the main concern for an EcoSport buyer as a low monthly payment paired with crossover styling are the typical priorities. A swing out rear door is used in lieu of the conventional top opening hatch, a welcome feature for taller buyers. Offered in S, SE, Titanium, and SES trim, a full array of technology is available such as Ford’s SYNC and 8 inch touchscreen, cross traffic alert, and MyKey for teen restricted driving modes. Ford can’t afford to watch customers stray to other brands for the their compact crossover needs. Time will tell if the EcoSport catches on like the surprise success of the Buick Encore.

2018 NAIAS: 2019 Ford Ranger

January 15th, 2018 No comments

 

Ford has been without a compact truck since the long-running Ranger left the US market at the end of 2012. The little truck had been built on the same basic chassis since its 1983 model year introduction. Once a Ford best seller with more than 300,000 sales each year between 1998 and 2000, sales dwindled to less than 60k in 2010. Famously, the last Ranger off the assembly line was a fleet truck sold to Orkin exterminators. Ford hasn’t had much reason to reintroduce the beloved compact truck with the successful F-150 continuing to top the sales charts. With the Toyota Tacoma and GM Colorado/Canyon cousins earning healthy sales, Ford has decided to defend its pick-up truck turf with the 2019 Ranger. Fully updated for the needs of the current market, the Ranger offers s 2.3L EcoBoost 4 cylinder paired to a 10-speed automatic. The new Ranger is offered in SuperCrew quad cab configuration – something it never offered previously in the United States. A SuperCab (extended cab) will also be offered. There will be a myriad of trim offerings including XL, XL Chrome, STX, XLT, XLT Chrome, XLT Sport, Lariat, Lariat Chrome, and Lariat Sport. Pricing is unknown at this point, and there is no official announcement about a Raptor version, but we can say it is nice to see the Ranger nameplate offered to US buyers once again and bring on that mini Raptor!

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2017 Chicago Auto Show: 2018 Ford Expedition

February 21st, 2017 No comments

 

The Ford Expedition has been a mainstay in Ford’s truck and SUV lineup since the late ’90s. The truck was originally based on the new-for-’97 F-150 and has gone through several significant updates along the way that has kept the family workhorse relevant. Look closely though, and you will see some windshield and door glass that has carried on since that 1998 introduction. To say, then, that we welcome a truly all-new platform for the Expedition is a bit of an understatement. The standard Expedition returns while the long wheelbase EL version is redubbed Expedition MAX which accommodates an additional 16.8 cubic feet of cargo. Like the outgoing model there is no V8 available. The Expeditions borrows the 3.5-liter V6 EcoBoost from the F-150 so expect about 375 horsepower and 470 pound-feet of torque. While a V6 may seem like not enough engine for such a large vehicle consider that the 2018 Expedition sheds up to 300 pounds over the 2017. Also consider that the original Expedition offered a standard 215 horsepower and 290 pound-feet of torque, so we’re sure this engine will continue to prove itself useful. That 300 pound weight reduction, by the way, is thanks to an aluminum intensive body which no doubt shares lessons learned from the recently revamped F-150. Trick features in the new SUV include a hinged shelf/organizer referred to as the Advanced Cargo Manager, second row seats that can tip and slide with a child seat in place, a reclining 3rd row seat, Sync 3 infotainment system, and available connectivity to home cable TV by means of Sling. Expect to see the Expedition and Expedition MAX in Ford dealerships in the fall of 2017.

2017 NAIAS: 2018 Ford F-150

January 25th, 2017 No comments

 

Ford is pushing new updates out to it’s bread and butter truck and celebrating its 40 years of sales leadership with more power, a new look and a 10-speed automatic paired with all but the base engines. The best way to identify the 2018 models is with the two bars stretching across the entire span of the grille. Every trim features a different grille finish to further identify them and the top trims are more luxurious than ever. We don’t have final power figures but Ford did announce that a diesel is joining the lineup, albeit not until mid-2018. For now we will have to be content that the blue oval continues to refine their best seller.

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2016 NAIAS: 2017 Ford Fusion

January 11th, 2016 No comments

Now on the market for ten years, Ford is not satisfied to rest on its laurels as it continues to use its midsize Fusion to scrape sales away from the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord. Ford has massaged the front fascia slightly, added optional LED headlamps, and introduces a rotary shift knob that replaces the more conventional console shift lever. The Fusion Hybrid and Plug-In Hybrid both remain available, the latter of which offers options for monitoring and scheduling charging through the MyFord Mobile app. Those who want to wring a little bit more fun out of their commute should look to the Fusion Sport which offers a 2.7L turbocharged EcoBoost V6 as well as all-wheel drive. A Platinum trim level offers a unique front grille and 19” polished-aluminum wheels. Three EcoBoost engines are offered across the range with the 1.5L and 2.0L 4-cylinders in addition to the Sport-exclusive 2.7L V6.  Sadly, it appears that the rare manual transmission has been cut from the line-up.

2015 NAIAS: 2017 Ford Raptor

January 12th, 2015 No comments

Ford Performance saw a golden opportunity with the introduction of the aluminum bodied F-150. If the outgoing Raptor was a good thing, certainly a 500 lb. lighter model would be an irresistible follow up. Emblazoned with its trademark F-O-R-D lettering spanning the width of the grille, flared fenders and curious running lights in the grille, this Raptor looks poised to continue to win the praise of the off-roading crowd. The 2016 Raptor is powered by an all-new high output 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 that Ford claims will better the current 6.2-liter V8’s 411 horsepower and 434 lb. ft. of torque while burning less fuel. All this power is transferred via an all-new 10 speed automatic transmission which can be manually shifted using paddles. Featuring FOX Racing Shox and increased suspension travel, Ford assures that the Raptor is ready to combat the toughest terrain.  The flared body panels are a full six inches wider than the standard F-150. No fewer than six drive modes are selectable for driving on all sorts of terrain including normal, street, weather, mud, baja and rock. For those who want a truck that can do more than simply shuttle lumber home from the hardware store, the Raptor looks to continue to please. Unfortunately, you’ll be waiting until the fall of 2016 to drive one home.

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2015 NAIAS: 2017 Ford GT

January 12th, 2015 No comments

We didn’t expect a follow up to the mighty GT supercar at this year’s Detroit Auto Show, but that is exactly what we got thanks to Ford’s heavy emphasis on performance and nobody on the AT Staff is complaining. With a far more expressive and modern design this time around the new GT looks ready to line up next to anything from Lamborghini or Ferrari, and with a twin turbo V6 making 600+ hp sitting midship, the performance should be exceptional. Large carbon ceramic brakes and performance tires from Michelin are also included and the best part by far: Ford is building it next year.

2015 NAIAS: 2016 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350R

January 12th, 2015 No comments

Not content to have the Chevrolet Camaro nipping at its heals with such headline models as the ZL1 and Z/28, Ford has added a track package to the Mustang portfolio dubbed the Shelby GT350R. Ford claims the GT350R is the most track-capable production Mustang ever and yet is fully road-legal. Some of the enhancements above and beyond the standard Shelby GT350 include the industry’s first ever carbon fiber wheels, Ford’s first production V8 with a flat-plane crankshaft, and a specially tuned suspension. The deck-lid features a wild rear wing constructed of carbon fiber as well as a revised front splitter to maximize down force. The GT350R manages to be the most powerful naturally aspirated production Ford engine in history with more than 500 fire breathing horses and north of 400 lb-ft of twist. If this combination of power, performance and style isn’t enough for you, just wait. Ford Performance is promising at least 11 more tantalizing vehicles by 2020.

2014 NAIAS: Ford Edge Concept

January 14th, 2014 No comments

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2014 NAIAS: 2015 Ford Mustang

January 13th, 2014 No comments

 

The Ford Mustang is an icon like no other so when a new one debuts the world pays attention. We were able to lay eyes on the new ponys at the NAIAS and came away pleased with the significant update that arrives just in time for the model’s 50th Anniversary. Gone is the solid rear axle so we expect a new level of handling finesse without the side skip you used to get on broken pavement. We’re also fans of the revised profile and sportier greenhouse with cleaner lines and a dramatically sloped rear fastback shape. Up front the wide grille remains tough looking and instantly recognizable. The rear end is visually reduced from the last generation and sportier looking as a result. The 5.0 V8 remains the top engine and the 3.7-liter V6 serves as the base motor but a new 2.3-liter Ecoboost four-cylinder will slot in the middle as an efficient option with more than 300 horsepower. The interior remains mostly retro inspired but with improved materials and easier to use controls to access the latest connectivity and infotainment options. Of course the usual bevy of special editions will start debuting before long but for now we’re happy to report the world can breathe easy because the Mustang GT lives up to its iconic status.

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