National Highway Traffic Safety Administration awards 2015 Ford F-150 SuperCrew with its five-star Overall Vehicle Score in New Car Assessment Program, the highest possible rating, making it the safest F-150 ever
All-new F-150 safety features include an advanced restraint system with dual-stage airbags, Curve Control to help drivers stay on their intended path, and available inflatable rear safety belts in SuperCrew models – a segment-first innovation
2015 F-150 – the toughest, smartest, most capable and efficient F-150 ever – includes the highest EPA-estimated fuel economy ratings of any full-sized gasoline pickup on the market, plus best-in-class towing and payload ratings
The all-new Ford F-150 SuperCrew has earned the government’s highest possible crash safety rating – adding to the F-150’s strengths as the toughest, smartest, most capable F-150 ever.
Thanks to 31 new safety-related innovations developed by the Ford truck team, the 2015 F-150 SuperCrew has earned a five-star Overall Vehicle Score in the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s New Car Assessment Program.
“The five-star safety rating is a terrific example of One Ford collaboration and innovation,” said Raj Nair, Ford group vice president, Global Product Development. “Our truck team worked together for years to deliver this accomplishment, using an unprecedented combination of advanced materials throughout the all-new F-150. The 2015 model is engineered to be the safest F-150 ever, which matters to customers who depend on this truck to not only get the job done, but also get them safely home.”
F-150’s improved performance is enabled by up to a 700-pound weight savings through the use of high-strength steel in the frame; high-strength, military-grade, aluminum alloy in the body; and smart engineering.
A cross-functional group comprised of Ford truck product development veterans and researchers worked to precisely optimize vehicle weight savings and manufacturing design to deliver improved durability, capability, fuel economy and crashworthiness. The team created and patented new structures, materials and joining methods that were tested virtually with supercomputer simulations, then retested in Ford’s advanced laboratories to engineer the safest F-150 ever.
Supercomputers for safety
The F-150 team started engineering the truck with supercomputers before the first units were ever even crash-tested in a lab.
Engineers developed digital safety models with nearly 1.4 million separate elements to examine how even the smallest parts of the truck would perform in a crash situation.
Safety starts with the frame Safety starts with the truck’s signature, fully boxed frame – the backbone of the all-new F-150.
Engineers added an extra crossmember and increased the use of high-strength steel to improve stiffness, durability and safety – while also helping reduce the frame’s weight by up to 60 pounds.
“The team had to invent new ways to manage crash energy, because advanced materials like high-strength steel behave differently,” said Matt Niesluchowski, Ford truck safety manager. “We found that changing certain shapes led to a weight reduction, while also improving crash performance.”
Safety engineers developed a patented 12-corner front crush horn to dissipate more energy in a front impact. The uniquely shaped structure helps manage crash forces so the frame buckles predictably to keep those forces away from occupants in the cabin. This is just one of the 31 new safety-related innovations the team developed to make the truck safer in the event of a crash.
Safety improvements to the aluminum-alloy body
Ford’s advanced research and safety teams worked together to engineer F-150’s high-strength, military-grade, aluminum-alloy body structure to manage what happens to the body in the event of a crash.
The truck’s cab features hydroformed roof rails that constitute a cage-like structure around the doors, extruded roof bows to provide lateral strength across the top of the cab, and extruded rocker rails near the bottom to reinforce lower body strength.
How various parts of the truck were joined also yielded safety improvements. In many cases, welding was not the most effective way to join parts, so the team developed and patented methods to connect parts using high-strength adhesives. This resulted in structural strength equal to or greater than traditional welds.
Additional safety features
New to F-150 is an advanced restraint system that includes an adaptive steering column that adjusts energy management depending on occupant size and safety belt usage. The system includes dual-stage airbags and side-curtain airbags.
The all-new F-150 offers the following safety features:
Safety belt pretensioners added to the belt anchor side that further tighten the lap belt around front seat occupants, keeping them in a more secure spot early in the event of a crash
Curve Control, a technology that will slow the vehicle when it senses the truck is going too fast for a particular curve
Available inflatable rear safety belts for SuperCrew – a segment-first feature
The 2015 F-150 introduces all-new driver-assist and semi-autonomous technologies, including several class-exclusive features such as adaptive cruise control and active park assist.
Adaptive cruise control and collision warning with brake support use radar in the front of the truck to measure the distance and speed of vehicles ahead. Using this information, F-150 can automatically slow to keep a consistent following distance set by the driver. Collision warning triggers visual and audio alerts if the system detects the following distance is diminishing too quickly and a collision may occur. It also pre-charges the brakes if the driver needs to stop suddenly.
Active park assist uses two ultrasonic sensors and electric power-assisted steering to help drivers parallel park. The sensors measure the gap between two vehicles to determine if there is enough room for the truck. After confirming the F-150 can fit, active park assist automatically steers the truck into the space, while the driver operates the accelerator and brake pedals.
Lane-keeping system is designed to help prevent a driver from drifting out of the intended driving lane. The system detects the left- or right-hand road lane markings using a camera mounted between the windshield and interior rearview mirror. A warning vibration in the steering wheel is used to alert the driver that the vehicle is drifting out of the lines. Semi-autonomous lane-keeping aid then can provide steering torque to help guide the vehicle back into the lane if needed.
Toughest, smartest, most capable and efficient F-150 ever F-150’s advanced materials and weight savings lead to customer benefits regardless of model configuration or engine choice. The innovative new truck can tow up to 1,100 more pounds and haul up to 530 more pounds than the 2014 model, and it has the highest EPA-estimated fuel economy ratings of any full-sized gasoline pickup on the market.
When equipped with the available 2.7-liter EcoBoost® engine, the all-new F-150 4×2 returns EPA-estimated fuel economy ratings of 19 mpg city, 26 mpg highway and 22 mpg combined. Actual mileage will vary.
Ford car designer Kevin George tosses the Ricochet, a flipping, double sided R/C toy outside the Ford campus in Dearborn, Mich.
Any former 10-year old with a growing collection of Hot Wheels coupled with any kind of artistic inclination wanted to design fast cars at some point in their lifetime. Kevin George, the designer at Ford responsible for the bold look of the Ford Edge, was similarly inspired by toys and worked in the toy design industry for years before transitioning to making ‘big boy toys’ in Michigan.
“The passion that kids had for their toys – I want them to grow up and have that same passion for their cars,” George told The Washington Times after walking through the 2015 Edge crossover at its debut in March. This childlike exuberance has found its way into every aspect of the vehicles overall design. The new Edge is slimmer, sleeker, smaller and sportier than ever before.
So where did George get his start? After going to university for an industrial design degree, George went to work for a toy company in Cincinnati called Kenner. The company had recently landed a major Hollywood connection by earning the rights to produce Star Wars toys and wanted to move in a direction of making Hollywood-related car toys. George’s first product with the company was a toy car from the movie “Ghostbusters,” and a similar project for “Jurassic Park” soon after.
The production schedule for designing, molding, shipping, and distributing the movie toys was so hectic in fact, that George had a large hand in designing the on-set props. This was because the time it took to make the toys from start to finish was effectively longer than the time it took to make the entire movie.
With such a large imprint on culture then, George was an exceptional addition to Ford when he came on as the chief interior designer for the 2005 Mustang. George felt right home, saying Ford did designing “…the same way we did at Kenner. With a movie toy you ask yourself: ‘What is the core fantasy of this film?’ With a car it’s the same. ‘What is it that people like about a ‘67 Mustang?’ I knew what to do. I knew how to capture the essence of the Mustang.”
If you want to see some of George’s work, stop by Beach Ford today!
Your tires are literally where rubber meets the road, and keeping them maintained should be a top priority for any Ford owner. The consequences for not maintaining your tires can be as mild as poor fuel economy or as severe as a roadside blow-out that can leave you stranded in the middle of nowhere.
For optimum performance, tires must have the correct air pressure, tread depth, balance and the wheels of the vehicle must be properly aligned. If all of these variables line up properly, you have a great foundation for safer driving.
Air pressure can be checked at almost any gas station. Simply use a pressure gauge on the air pump for an accurate reading. Compare that number to the recommended air pressure for your tires by looking on the inside of your door for a small chart. Do this for all four tires as well as the spare.
Tread depth refers to the recesses in your tires. These deep grooves provide traction and help your car keep control in wet conditions. If the tread on your tire is barely visible then you have what is called a “bald” tire and it should be replaced immediately. An easy way to check the tread depth on any vehicle is to insert a quarter into a tread groove with the top of Washington’s head facing down, if the top of his head is not visible, your tires have at least 4/32” of tread and are fine for continued use.
Tire balance refers to the amount of vibration your tires experience at higher speeds. If your care vibrates more than you think it should, take it into your local Beach Ford to have it inspected. The fix could be as simple as balancing your tires.
Similarly, ensuring your wheels are aligned to vehicle specifications can help maintain fuel economy and the overall life of your tires. If your fuel economy has been dropping steadily or is not close to what is advertised, you may want to have your alignment inspected.
Maintaining your tires will pay dividends down the road, remember to perform visual inspections for wear and cracks in the rubber at least once a month. If anything seems amiss, bring your car to Beach Ford and we can help get you back on the road safely.
With water shortages drastically changing lives on the West Coast and around the world it is more important than ever for individual people and large companies alike to join together in conservation efforts. And Ford is doing just that in an exceptionally big way by cutting its global water use by 61% since 2000.
The Michigan Economic Center at Prima Civitas and the Grand Valley State University Annis Water Resources Institute released Michigan Blue Economy, a report designed to spur strategic actions to expand and grow the State’s already blue economy, and help Michigan to become the world’s freshwater and water innovation capital.
In the report, Ford Motor Company is profiled as a company leading the way in developing new water technology products and services. The report notes that Ford has cut water use “in everything from cooling towers to paint operations” since 2000.
Ford is the only automaker profiled in the report. Other notable sustainability achievements profiled in the report include that Ford was named Best Global Green Brand by Interbrand in 2014, Ford has reduced its total global water use by 61%, or more than 10 billion gallons, since 2000, and that Ford decreased the total amount of water used around global facilities, from 64 cubic meters per year to 25 million cubic meters.
The all-new Ford GT supercar is an ultra-high-performance, rear-wheel drive, carbon-fiber two-door coupe powered by a mid-mounted, twin-turbocharged EcoBoost® V-6 engine (the most powerful EcoBoost® ever produced by the way), and represents the pinnacle of the Ford Performance group as a showcase for Ford innovation and expertise in aerodynamics, lightweight construction and connected car technology.
An active rear spoiler that is keyed to both speed and driver input, as well as a a seven-speed dual-clutch transaxle (that should offer near-instantaneous gear changes) ensure that handling will never be a problem even at top speeds. The entire car has been designed with aerodynamics,balance, performance, safety and efficiency in mind.
This supercar gets more than 600 horsepower and is frankly the most beautiful thing you’re likely to see on the road for a long time. CNET has called the car stunning and said “the new GT is radically more dramatically cut than its predecessor…showing just how tightly that EcoBoost V-6 is packaged.”
However, you will be lucky to see it on the road at all. The new GT is bound to be one of the most sought-after cars in a generation due to a limited production line of only 250 per year and is to be paired with a roughly $400,000 price tag according to an article by USA Today.
The All-New Ford GT is set to launch in 2016.
The all-new Ford GT (blue) along with the 1966 Ford GT40 (red) and the second-generation Ford GT Number One (white).
Ford CEO, Mark Fields spoke with Yahoo Finance to discuss one of the largest shifts the automotive industry has seen in years, the rise of car-sharing services such as Uber and Lyft in urban and metropolitan areas. These applications have revolutionized public transportation and could pose a threat to the automotive industry as a whole if companies are unwilling to adapt.
If you’ve ever been out on the town on a Friday night and needed a taxi, you know that it can be real hassle to hail an empty cab. And calling the cab company can result in unbearable wait times that leave you out in the cold. “Car-sharing” applications eliminate the need to interact with a cab company, and have drastically reduced wait times by boosting the available number vehicles in the area. How? They let users serve as the drivers and use their own vehicles. Anyone with a car that meets requirements can work for these companies and get paid a percentage of fares. Fares are charged digitally from your credit card registered to your smartphone and eliminate fumbling for cash and hastily calculating tips. Additionally, riders can rate drivers and decide whether or not they’d like to ride with that driver again.
Both applications offer basically the same functionality and are extremely user-friendly. When you select a driver (you get to select one by the way) you can see their picture, know what kind of car they own, see how far they are away and get an estimate on a fare for your trip. If you want to keep track of your driver there is a map that shows exactly where your car is and the application can text you when your ride has arrived.
For car companies like Ford, this means there is a now an exceedingly competitive alternative to owning a car (if you live in a city). Buses, cabs, and metro have existed for years but this is a fast-rising and exceedingly popular alternative that makes payment easier than ever, values customer feedback and is generally more convenient than alternatives.
How is Ford responding?
According to Yahoo, Ford has 25 experiments around the world to push innovation in the automotive industry. “We’re thinking of ourselves as a mobility company as well as an auto company,” remarked Fields in an interview, “We’re seeing the trends… so we have launched what we call Ford Smart Mobility, which is around taking us to the next level using innovation around mobility, around connected cars, around autonomous vehicles.”
Ford Smart Mobility is potentially a direct answer to car-sharing companies like Uber and Lyft. Ford is researching and developing a smartphone app for consumers that can work with a fleet of high-end mini-buses that offer a similar service. These buses will work with up to 10 consumers at a time and will map a convenient route between all the locations. The prospective service could be described as a dynamic bus service where routes and times fluctuate based on used need.
Kelley Blue Book awarded Ford the title of “Best Truck Brand” regarded among truck shoppers in its 2015 “Brand Image Awards.” The Ford brand was helped by the F-150 and Super Duty F-250 and F-350 as those models were ranked highest by customers among all other models across a multitude of manufacturers.
Results were determined by the sentiments of more than 12,000 in-market new-vehicle shoppers doing research on kbb.com. Hwei-Lin Oetken, KBB’s vice president of market intelligence said “The classic saying ‘perception is reality’ rings true with the Kelley Blue Book Brand Image Awards…consumers today are more influenced than ever to take interest in a brand, ultimately affecting their vehicle purchase decisions.”
KBB remarked that Ford was helped in large part by the “boldly recast 2015 Ford F-150 [which] boasts [an] aluminum-intensive architecture that saves as much as 700 pounds and delivers a subsequent increase in fuel economy,” as well as the fact that Ford “has been the best-selling vehicle in the country for more than 30 years,” and therefore is a legacy brand that has won customer trust over time.
Don’t believe the hype? Stop by a Beach Ford location and test-drive an all-new Ford F-150 today.
For a complete list of the awards, visit the KBB website.
Your car works hard to keep you warm and safe in the dead of winter, and in spring it’s time for us to do our part by performing scheduled maintenance and inspections. These simple tips will ensure your car is perfectly prepared for the road ahead.
1. Start with a much-needed wash and wax. Not only will the springtime air feel invigorating for you, a thorough wash and wax will help stave off some of the corrosion from prolonged exposure to road salt and ice. Make sure to carefully consider the undercarriage and wheel-wells (where road salt can easily go unnoticed.)
2. Check your tire pressure. Cold air during the winter months can change the air pressure in most tires. As the weather heats up make sure that all your tires are properly inflated and balanced. You can easily check inside your car door to find out what the proper air pressure should be. (Be sure to check the spare tire as well.)
3. After the snow melts, be sure to have your brake system inspected. This is the most important part of your car aside from the engine itself, and keeping it maintained (including hoses, lines, brake pads and fluid) should be a top priority.
4. Your batteries, plugs and wires provide the energy to start your car and work harder than in the winter. Winter stress can compromise their performance up to 60 percent. Testing and replacing weak batteries or electrical components at least every three years can help you avoid a costly tow down the road.
5. For a certainly-smooth road ahead, have your suspension and wheel alignment inspected. Potholes can severely damage shocks and struts. Having your car inspected and corrected early could prevent costly repairs and replacements in the future.
If you’d like to an inspection or service performed for your vehicle, you can schedule an appointment with a service advisor here.
For the 6th straight year, the Ford Mustang has won the Vincentric Best Value in America Award for Sports Cars.
Based on statistical analysis of several key costs of ownership including insurance, financing, maintenance and depreciation, the 2015 Mustang came out on top of the stack.
The Vincentric Best Value in America Award is the latest in the 2015 Mustang’s trophy cabinet, joining other prestigious awards earned since launch, including:
-Detroit Free Press Car of the Year
-Cars.com Shoppers’ Choice Award
-Kiplinger’s Best New/Redesigned Car
-Edmunds.com Most Popular Awards: Entry Sport Car
-2014 SEMA Show “Hottest Car”
-2015 Automobile All-Star
-Car and Driver 10Best
-Road and Track “Performance Car of the Year” Finalist
-“North American Car of the Year” Finalist
-“World Car of the Year” Finalist
Since its launch in September, the all-new 2015 Mustang has been the best-selling sports car in America. With more options to choose from, there is a Mustang to fit any lifestyle. The upgraded V8 in Mustang GT – now delivering 435 horsepower and 400 lb.-ft. of torque – is joined by a 300-horsepower 3.7-liter V6 and an all-new 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine that brings state-of-the-art technology to Mustang. The 2.3-liter EcoBoost uses direct injection, variable cam timing and a twin-scroll turbocharger to deliver the performance Mustang drivers expect, with an output of 310 horsepower and 320 lb.-ft. of torque.
The all-new Ford Focus RS is set to debut on U.S. soil at the 2015 New York International Auto Show. Focus RS pioneers innovative Ford Performance All-Wheel Drive delivering blistering cornering speed for thrilling performance and unbridled driving enjoyment for enthusiasts in North America for the first time.
The high-performance road car introduces advanced performance technologies, and is the first Ford RS equipped with selectable drive modes – including industry-first drift mode as well as launch control.
The third-generation high-performance hatch features a 2.3-liter EcoBoost® engine delivering well in excess of 315 horsepower, along with the most powerful Ford RS braking system ever. Its dramatic exterior design offers optimized aerodynamics and cooling, with 9 percent less drag over the previous model.
Innovative Ford Performance All-Wheel Drive offers unmatched handling
Focus RS leverages innovative Ford Performance All-Wheel Drive with Dynamic Torque Vectoring to deliver a new level of handling capability and driver enjoyment – combining outstanding traction with unmatched agility and cornering speed.
The system is based on electronically controlled twin clutch packs on each side of the rear-drive unit. The control unit continuously varies front-to-rear and side-to-side torque distribution to suit the driving situation – monitoring inputs from multiple vehicle sensors 100 times per second. A maximum of 70 percent of the drive torque can be diverted to the rear axle. Up to 100 percent of available torque can be sent to each rear wheel delivering the torque-vectoring capability that has a dramatic impact on handling and cornering stability.
To deliver optimum driving dynamics, Ford Performance All-Wheel Drive is calibrated alongside the car’s advanced Electronic Stability Control, in particular, the brake-based torque-vectoring system that works in parallel with torque-vectoring all-wheel drive.
Ford worked with Michelin to develop a choice of high-performance 235/35R-19 tires to complement the driving dynamics Focus RS offers – a standard Pilot Super Sport for everyday use and, for the first time, an optional Pilot Sport Cup 2 for enhanced dynamics at the track.
The car’s exterior design supports the dynamic objectives as well. Aerodynamic optimization of the front splitter, rear spoiler and underbody eliminates lift forces, resulting in balanced performance with zero-lift front and rear for optimum high-speed handling and stability.
Industry-first drift mode heads up advanced performance technologies
The all-new Focus RS offers advanced performance and driver-assist technologies to help ensure its extreme driving capabilities are accessible and easy to use.
The driver can select from four different drive modes to configure the car for optimum performance in road or circuit driving conditions – normal, sport, track and a special drift mode.
Using a switch alongside the gear lever, the driver can choose settings for all-wheel drive, damper control, Electronic Stability Control, steering and engine response, as well as exhaust sound.
For enhanced braking performance in hard driving at the track, Focus RS features 13.78-inch ventilated front discs – up from 13.23 inches on the previous model. Lightweight aluminum four-piston monobloc Brembo calipers are painted distinctive RS blue with a Brembo logo available.
To help minimize fade under sustained track use, brake cooling is maximized through dedicated cooling ducts fed from the front fascia, twin “jet tunnels” in the underbody and airflow guides on the lower suspension arms. The front discs feature aerodynamically optimized ventilation fins for enhanced cooling.
Unique powertrain for high performance
Projected to deliver well in excess of 315 horsepower, the Focus RS 2.3-liter EcoBoost shares its fundamental structure with the all-aluminum four-cylinder engine in the all-new Mustang. What’s different is that the RS engine features a comprehensive package of design changes.
Increased output is generated by a new low-inertia twin-scroll turbocharger with larger compressor that delivers significantly greater airflow, along with a much bigger intercooler to maximize charge density. Engine breathing is enhanced through a less restrictive intake design, and a large-bore high-performance exhaust system with electronically controlled valve in the tailpipe helps optimize the balance of back pressure and noise output.
Engine cooling has been given the highest priority. Engineers created additional space within the front of the car to house a significantly larger radiator pack – the biggest ever fitted to a Focus – that provides the level of cooling demanded for hard driving. The cylinder head is produced from an upgraded alloy material capable of withstanding higher temperatures, and is mounted on a more robust head gasket with improved thermal capability. Stronger high-tensile cast-iron liners are used for the cylinder block.
With its high-efficiency design featuring direct fuel injection, twin independent variable camshaft timing, advanced turbocharging and Auto Start-Stop, this EcoBoost engine delivers exceptional power and respectable fuel consumption.
The six-speed manual is optimized for the enthusiast driver with a shorter gear shift and revised mechanism to deliver faster, more accurate shifts. Both transmission and clutch are upgraded with stronger components to cope with the engine’s increased torque output.
High-performance design for stunning looks with optimum function
The exterior is dramatic and functional. Designers worked closely with Ford Performance to ensure functional attributes were achieved, focusing on aerodynamic downforce and balance and the cooling demands of the powertrain and brakes. The result is a powerful, muscular character.
Focus RS, based on the standard model, features a powerful new front end look, with a bold upper trapezoidal grille above a deep splitter incorporating the largest possible openings for engine cooling. Bi-xenon HID headlamps offer brilliant illumination in all road conditions. The wide, muscular stance is emphasized by lower wings and large outboard openings on each side of the car, which feed the brake cooling ducts and house vertically mounted fog lamps.
At the rear, the fascia panel is dominated by an exceptionally large diffuser that optimizes airflow from under the car. The distinctive roof spoiler is integrated with the car’s silhouette through body-colored side panels featuring a subtle embossed RS logo.
The high-performance character is reflected in the cockpit, with heavily bolstered, partial-leather Recaro sport seats as the centerpiece. A soft-feel flat-bottomed steering wheel, leather-covered rim, alloy pedals and unique instrument graphics in the main cluster reinforce the performance character. Gauges atop the center console display turbo boost pressure, oil temperature and oil pressure.
The distinctive blue RS theme is echoed throughout the cabin in the stitching on the seats, steering wheel, floor mats, interior trim, colored graphic on the gear shift and in the RS logo itself on the seats, steering wheel and door scuff plates.
The interior features the redesigned Focus control layout, with 8-inch capacitive touch screen with SYNC® 3 voice connectivity for audio, navigation, climate control and mobile phones.
Four striking colors for the exterior include Focus RS-exclusive Nitrous Blue, a vibrant four-coat metallic finish, as well as Stealth Gray, Shadow Black and Frozen White.
Rich heritage of innovation and performance
Since the first Ford RS models took to the road, the marque has been an essential element of Ford DNA – delivering technological innovation and performance for road and track. Dating back to the early days of the company’s success in Rallye Sport, the first models established the RS reputation for advanced technology and driving exhilaration.
The original 215-horsepower Focus RS from 2002 featured a 2.0-liter turbocharged engine and advanced limited-slip differential. The second-generation model sent 305 horsepower through its front wheels with a groundbreaking RevoKnuckle suspension design.
The all-new Focus RS is the latest vehicle to be unveiled as part of a new era of Ford performance that will bring to customers globally more than 12 performance vehicles through 2020. In addition to pleasing enthusiasts, RS vehicles help deliver the company’s One Ford plan for profitable growth, product excellence and innovation in every part of its business.
Ford Motor Company and its founder Henry Ford were honored at the Washington Automotive Press Association’s 30th Anniversary Gala with the organization’s Golden Gear Award. The company and its founder are being recognized for their outstanding contributions to the automotive industry.
Henry Ford didn’t just set out to build a strong business by introducing compelling products – he was passionate about making life better for millions of people. He may be best known for the invention of the affordable car that put the world on wheels, but equally notable is the mark he made on society – perfecting the moving assembly line to help usher in another industrial revolution and doubling wages of factory workers, which helped give rise to the middle class.
Carrying on the legacy of its founder, Ford Motor Company is driving innovation in every part of its business. This includes:
EcoBoost® engine technology that is now in more than 5 million Ford vehicles, helping people everywhere save gas
Advanced, lightweight materials that make America’s best-selling pickup truck, F-Series, even more capable and efficient
Industry-first inflatable rear safety belts that provide additional protection for rear seat passengers, as well as other safety innovations that help millions of people avoid accidents
Earlier this year the company announced its Ford Smart Mobility plan to use innovation to take it to the next level in connectivity, mobility, autonomous vehicles, customer experience and big data. Ford is also conducting 25 mobility experiments around the world this year to test breakthrough transportation ideas to create better customer experiences, more flexible user-ship models and social collaboration that can reward customers.
The experiments seek to address four global megatrends – explosive population growth, an expanding middle class, air quality and public health concerns, and changing customer attitudes and priorities – challenging today’s transportation model and limiting personal mobility, especially in urban areas.
Henry Ford believed a good business makes excellent products and earns a healthy return, and that a great business does all of this while creating a better world. That vision continues to drive the people at Ford Motor Company each day.
What if we could redirect plastics from landfill and use them to create innovative materials, and then put them in the all-new Ford F-150, part of Ford F-Series, America’s best-selling truck? We could make a big difference.
Since 2012, Ford Motor Company has worked with Unifi to bring environmentally responsible, high-performance REPREVE fiber to many Ford vehicles. Now, this innovative fiber is available in the in the all-new F-150. By substituting with this recycled material, Ford will divert more than five million plastic bottles from landfills this year.
Ford is the only automaker to use REPREVE, made from 100 percent recycled materials including plastic bottles, in its vehicles. Ford is currently using REPREVE in five vehicles around the world, making it a truly global material, and it represents Ford’s larger commitment to reduce, reuse and recycle as part of the company’s global sustainability strategy to lessen its environmental footprint.
“By using REPREVE in the all-new Ford F-150, we are reconfirming our commitment to using renewable and recyclable materials in our vehicles,” said Carol Kordich, lead designer, global sustainability materials strategy development. “We are always looking for ways to incorporate more innovative and sustainable materials into our vehicles.”
Red and black clinch the top spots as the most popular exterior paint colors for the first global Mustang, according to initial consumer data.
Mustang demand has been high, with the car reaching dealer lots in the United States late last year and China in early 2015. It’s set to go on sale in Europe midyear, with nearly 1.1 million pony cars configured on Ford’s European websites just a month after ordering banks opened.
Passion for the car is universal, but trends are beginning to surface based on customer data that provide an early glimpse into regional similarities and differences among Mustang enthusiasts worldwide.
In China and Europe, Race Red clinches the top spot for exterior paint color choice, with Absolute Black in a tie for first in Europe, according to configurator data. Nearly 35 percent of Mustang orders in China are for Race Red, while black is the No. 1 color in the United States.
Some regional highlights to note:
With white the top color choice in the United States overall, Mustang bucks the trend; black remains the top Mustang color, followed by Magnetic Metallic and Ruby Red
Mustang sales up 32 percent in February, making it the best-selling sports car in America with the launch of the all-new model last fall
With Mustang now on sale, 35 percent of orders specify Race Red; Oxford White is the second-most popular color at 20 percent, followed by black at just under 20 percent
More than 5 million consumers visited the Ford site to learn more about Mustang; more than 18,000 requests for Mustang test drives logged in China
Awareness of Mustang is growing, and this has resulted in a powerful ripple effect on consumers’ perception of Ford; one in 12 Chinese consumers are aware of Mustang, and of those who not yet are, nearly 40 percent are registering a more favorable opinion of Ford
One month after being made available to order, almost 1.1 million Mustangs have been configured on Ford’s European websites
The top colors are Race Red and Absolute Black – each accounting for 20 percent of models configured across Europe
Race Red and Absolute Black occupy the No. 1 and No. 2 spots in each of the five biggest markets in Europe except for the United Kingdom
Deep Impact Blue is third-most popular color in Europe; in the United Kingdom, it’s second after Race Red, and in Italy, Deep Impact Blue is tied with Race Red, behind Absolute Black
Fans around the world have been waiting 50 years to drive the iconic Ford Mustang. Now they’re getting their chance, and it’s noteworthy that universal passion for the car is underscored by the colors customers everywhere are choosing to dress it in.
For the fourth year straight, Ford Fusion Hybrid has been named U.S. News & World Report’s Best Hybrid Car for Families. Fusion Hybrid leverages advanced vehicle electrification technology to provide a stylish, roomy, fun-to-drive family sedan. The 2015 model offers an impressive portfolio of driver-assist and convenience technologies based on sensors, cameras and radar that enable driver and passengers to enjoy a more relaxed and comfortable experience on the road. The award is based on professional automotive reviews, safety and reliability ratings, seating and cargo volume, and the availability of family-friendly features. Click here for more on the U.S. News & World Report award.
When it comes to dangers on the road, we’re going to guess you immediately think of people who aren’t paying attention because they are texting while driving, distracted by who knows what or the like. What probably doesn’t come to mind at first is that the driver next to you could suddenly suffer a heart attack. You’re welcome for that ray of sunshine today.
But there is indeed a bright spot: Engineers at Ford have developed a prototype car seat that uses electrocardiograph (ECG) technology to monitor the heart’s electrical impulses and detect signs of irregularity, resulting in an early warning that a driver should seek medical assistance, such as for a heart attack, high blood pressure, electrolyte imbalances or other cardiovascular issue.
Now, don’t imagine having to add 15 minutes to your commute in order to attach metal electrodes all over your skin before you can start the engine. Rather, this ECG seat has six built-in sensors that can detect heart activity through clothing. The sensors pick up the electrical impulses generated by the heart, turning them into signals that can be analyzed by medical experts or computer software.
Engineers from the Ford European Research Center in Aachen, Germany, working closely since 2009 with Rheinisch-Westfälische Technische Hochschule, Aachen University, which developed contactless ECG technology, embarked on the project to address this often overlooked traffic safety issue – accidents triggered by drivers who experience heart problems.
Research by the Impaired Motorists, Methods of Roadside Testing and Assessment for Licensing project, a three-year European Union research program, found that drivers suffering from cardiovascular disease were, on average, 23 percent more likely to be involved in an accident. For drivers who suffered from angina, this figure grew to 52 percent.
Yet you’re probably thinking, when you’ve seen people in a movie having a heart episode, they’re not exactly calm, cool or collected, so you figure in the real world, a driver wouldn’t put on a turn signal, check for traffic and maneuver gracefully to the side of the road. Here’s where things get even more interesting: Ford is also testing the prototype seat to understand how it could work with other advanced systems within Ford vehicles to warn a driver to pull over and seek medical attention, possibly mitigating the consequences of a driver losing control, or even send out an alert to emergency medical workers if necessary. Connected to a system such as Ford SYNC® with MyFord Touch™, the seat potentially could use the driver’s mobile phone to send a message to medical centers, alerting doctors to irregular heart activity. The seat also could be linked through SYNC to inform emergency response teams of the driver’s heart condition before, during and after an accident.
Engineers also are studying how the seat might be used to observe heart patients and allow doctors to maintain a record of heart activity that could be transmitted to medical professionals and reduce the need for visits to the hospital.
In early tests, the heart-monitoring seat has recorded accurate readings during 98 percent of driving time for 95 percent of drivers. Ford research engineers are continuing to study how sensors can be made to record signals through a greater number of materials including those that interrupt readings with their own electrical activity. The technology could initially be of most benefit to drivers known to have heart conditions, primarily those in more mature age groups.
1. Your vehicle’s safety systems could be affected. Counterfeit and aftermarket parts are sometimes made with flimsier materials—plastic instead of steel, for example—which not only can damage the structural integrity of your vehicle but can have a dangerous effect on your carefully calibrated airbags. Why take a gamble? Ford Original Equipment collision replacement parts protect you by working seamlessly with your vehicle’s safety systems, which means less hassle and fewer worries.
3. You could pay extra in the long run. More repairs, of course, could translate into more money thrown away. Also, the fit, design and performance of aftermarket and counterfeit parts can differ so wildly that you may have to replace parts more frequently even if you never get into an accident. And don’t forget: Damage to your vehicle caused by the failure of aftermarket, salvage or reconditioned parts may not be covered by your Ford new-vehicle warranty.
4. Counterfeit parts may be untested. There’s no getting around it: Counterfeit auto parts are made illegally. Which means you don’t know for sure where they’re from, what they’re made of or whether they adhere to any safety standards. In 2012 the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration went so far as to issue an alert warning drivers to stay away from counterfeit air bags, because tests showed “consistent malfunctioning ranging from non-deployment of the air bag to the expulsion of metal shrapnel during deployment.” Yikes.
5. You could be without your Ford longer. Repair time may increase when it comes to aftermarket, counterfeit or salvage parts, because they can require modifications or work-arounds to make them fit. And you could have to wait longer just for parts to be shipped in from far-off locations. Don’t be left in the lurch: Beach Ford service centers use genuine Ford parts which means you’re back in action that much faster. For more info about Ford Collision parts, check out takeagoodlook.com.
The all-new Ford Focus RS makes its global debut today at the Geneva Motor Show. The high-performance road car pioneers innovative Ford Performance All-Wheel Drive, and delivers class-leading cornering speed for thrilling performance and unbridled driving enjoyment.
Focus RS introduces advanced performance technologies, and is the first Ford RS equipped with selectable drive modes – including industry-first drift mode, as well as launch control.
With a 2.3-liter EcoBoost® engine delivering well in excess of 315 horsepower, the high-performance road car features the most powerful Ford RS braking system ever. Its dramatic exterior design offers optimized aerodynamics and cooling, with 9 percent less drag than the previous Focus RS.
Focus RS is the latest vehicle to be unveiled as part of a new era of Ford performance that will bring to customers globally more than 12 performance vehicles through 2020. In addition to pleasing enthusiasts, these vehicles help deliver the company’s One Ford plan for profitable growth, product excellence and innovation in every part of its business.
Developed by a small team of Ford Performance engineers in Europe and the United States, the high-performance hatch is the third-generation Focus RS, following models launched in 2002 and 2009. It’s the 30th car to wear the legendary RS badge, following such technology trendsetters as the 1970 16-valve Escort RS1600, 1985 turbocharged Sierra RS Cosworth with radical aerodynamics and 1992 Escort RS Cosworth with four-wheel drive.
This all-new Focus RS is the first RS model that will be sold in North America – produced for all markets at Ford’s Saarlouis, Germany, manufacturing plant beginning late this year.
Gymkhana and World Rallycross star Ken Block was brought on as a consultant on the all-new Focus RS, and joined the Ford Performance team on the Geneva Motor Show stand.
Innovative Ford Performance All-Wheel Drive offers unmatched handling
The all-new Focus RS exploits innovative Ford Performance All-Wheel Drive with Dynamic Torque Vectoring to deliver a new level of handling capability and driver enjoyment – combining outstanding traction and grip with unmatched agility and cornering speed.
Ford Performance All-Wheel Drive is based on twin electronically controlled clutch packs on each side of the rear-drive unit. These manage the car’s front/rear torque split, and can control side-to-side torque distribution on the rear axle – delivering the torque vectoring capability that has a dramatic impact on handling and cornering stability.
The control unit in the rear-drive unit continuously varies the front/rear and side-to-side torque distribution to suit the driving situation – monitoring inputs from multiple vehicle sensors 100 times per second. A maximum of 70 percent of the drive torque can be diverted to the rear axle. Up to 100 percent of available torque at the rear axle can be sent to each rear wheel.
In cornering situations, the rear-drive unit pre-emptively diverts torque to the outer rear wheel immediately based on inputs such as steering wheel angle, lateral acceleration, yaw and speed. This torque transfer has the effect of “driving” the car into a bend – achieving improved turn-in and stability while virtually eliminating understeer.
The system is tuned to deliver exceptional grip – with lateral acceleration exceeding 1 g – along with class-leading cornering speed and acceleration out of a bend. With neutral and adjustable limit handling and the ability to achieve controlled oversteer drifts at the track, Focus RS delivers the ultimate fun-to-drive experience.
To deliver optimum driving dynamics, Ford Performance All-Wheel Drive has been calibrated alongside the car’s advanced Electronic Stability Control, in particular, the brake-based torque-vectoring system that works in parallel with the torque-vectoring all-wheel drive.
Other exclusive chassis features include a sport suspension with stiffer spring rates and more efficient bushes and antiroll bars than those found in Focus ST, and two-mode switchable dampers, which offer a firmer setting for track driving. Carefully tuned electric power-assisted steering, in combination with an optimized front suspension knuckle design and shorter steering link arms, delivers connected and responsive steering with outstanding feel.
Ford worked with Michelin to develop a choice of high-performance 235/35R-19 tires to complement Focus RS driving dynamics – a standard Pilot Super Sport for everyday use and, for the first time on RS, an optional Pilot Sport Cup 2 for enhanced vehicle dynamics on the track.
The car’s exterior design has been developed to support the dynamic objectives as well. Aerodynamic optimization of the front splitter, rear spoiler and underbody eliminates lift forces, and the final design delivers balanced performance with zero-lift front and rear, for optimum high-speed handling and stability.
With a drag coefficient of 0.35, the shape of the new model is 6 percent more aerodynamic than the previous Focus RS, and with its more compact frontal area, the car generates 9 percent less drag – improving high-speed performance and reducing fuel consumption.
Ford Motor Company is expanding its global Ford Smart Mobility plan with a new experiment to study how electric bicycles can work seamlessly with cars and public transport to deliver faster and easier daily commutes and help businesses operating in urban centers.
The experiment called Handle on Mobility was detailed today at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona and marks the latest mobility project the company has announced worldwide this year as part of Ford Smart Mobility, the company’s plan to help change the way the world moves through innovation in connectivity, mobility, autonomous vehicles, customer experience and big data.
These experiments will help test transportation ideas for better customer experiences, more flexible user-ship models and social collaboration that can reward customers.
Traffic problems and overly-long commutes have a significant economic and social impact in large cities.
Handle on Mobility
The Handle on Mobility experiment extends the range of transport solutions for a connected journey that is more efficient, safer, healthier, and enables journeys to be completed with less anxiety and stress.
As a starting point for the experiment, Ford challenged employees around the world to submit designs for e-bikes. The prototype MoDe:Me and MoDe:Pro e-bikes presented at Mobile World Congress are among the top designs from more than 100 submitted.
Both e-bikes are equipped with a 200-watt motor with 9-amp-hour battery that provides electric pedal assist for speeds of up to 25 km/h. The prototype e-bikes offer technology inspired by the automotive industry including, for example, a rear-facing ultrasonic sensor. This enables a rider alert system that both warns the cyclist when a vehicle is overtaking, by vibrating both handlebars, and alerts motorists of the presence of the e-bike by illuminating handlebar lights.
The bikes, which fold easily into Ford vehicles, meet the needs of different users:
The MoDe:Me e-bike – built with the help of bicycle manufacturer Dahon – is intended for urban commuters to keep moving in congested city traffic. It folds and stows easily, allowing commuters to park on the city outskirts, take the e-bike onto public transport and travel to the centre, then ride the e-bike to their destination
The MoDe:Proe-bike – built by a Ford team – is intended for urban commercial use such as by couriers, electricians, and goods and delivery services. It is designed to stow safely into commercial vehicles such as Transit Connect, which can act as carrier and support vehicle, and be combined with more than one e-bike
The prototype MoDe:Me and MoDe:Pro e-bikes work with a prototype app called MoDe:Link compatible with the iPhone 6. Real-time information from the app enables the e-bikes to deliver:
Navigation: Handle-bar grip vibrations let the rider know when to turn. Turn signals are triggered automatically for safety. The app can identify bike-friendly roads, hazards and alerts, and will be able to sense, and communicate with other vehicles
Multimodal navigation and smart routing: Integrates journey planning with personal vehicle and public transportation networks, which can be filtered by cost, time, and amount of biking. Map includes weather, parking costs, and charging stations
Speed and comfort: Electric pedal assist rate can be adjusted based on heart rate, “No Sweat” mode reduces the requirement to pedal, allowing riders to arrive fresh at their destination
SYNC compatibility: While the e-bike is stowed and charging inside the vehicle, Ford’s SYNC voice-activated connectivity system shows the app on the vehicle’s display
After users input a destination, the MoDe:Link app lists possible journeys and then provides step-by-step or turn-by-turn navigation. This might include driving to a train station, taking an e-bike onto the train, then riding the bike from the train stop to the final destination. The app also updates the route as circumstances change. For example, if a train service is cancelled, the app could recommend that a commuter drive instead.
Info Cycle experiment
Ford at Mobile World Congress is showcasing for the first time in Europe the Info Cycle experiment, an open-source research initiative to gather information about how bikes are used in different urban areas. The project has been designed to enhance understanding of the biking ecosystem and to improve safety for cyclists, as well as exploring improved mapping, smart journey planning and community-based services. A sensor box on the frame gathers data such as wheel speed, acceleration, weather and altitude.
1. I’M PLANNING A 120-MILE ROAD TRIP—CAN I CHARGE UP ALONG THE WAY?
Using MyFord® Mobile, the standard smartphone app for Focus Electric owners, drivers can select specially created MapQuest routes that show every charge station along your route. Additionally, Ford is working directly with metropolitan areas across the country to support having public charge stations for electric vehicles.
2. WHAT CAN I DO TO MAXIMIZE MY VEHICLE RANGE?
Just like fuel economy, range is all about energy efficiency. To get the most miles per charge from your Focus Electric, practice these easy steps: Keep tires properly inflated to decrease rolling resistance; brake smoothly to transfer energy back to the battery via regenerative braking technology; and use MyFord Mobile’s unique Trip Planner option to pinpoint the most economical path for your trip.
3. WILL EXTREME WEATHER LIMIT MY BATTERY LIFE?
The lithium-ion battery that powers Focus Electric uses an advanced liquid cooling and heating process to maximize battery life, so you can get the most miles out of any charge at any time.
Congratulations: You’ve made it most of the way through the chilliest season of the year. Now you just need to get through the final stretch before spring arrives in all its glory. Follow these winter maintenance tips to help keep your vehicle running smoothly—because road trip season is just around the corner.
1. Check the battery. Battery issues are the most frequent cause of breakdowns, and cold temperatures can drain batteries far faster than warm ones. You may be able to head off disaster if you simply keep your battery in good shape.
DIY: Examine the battery terminals and cables, making sure they’re tight and free of corrosion.
Take it to your the Beach Ford Service Center for a battery check if: the battery grinds or clicks when you start up, your headlights are dim or your battery is more than three years old.
2. Winterize your wiper system. It’s a good idea to install winter wipers; they’re stronger—to move snow and ice—and have an extra layer of rubber to protect against corrosion and rust. And we suggest using Motorcraft® Windshield Washer Fluid with the necessary freeze protection level for your area.
DIY: Changing your own wipers is not too tough. Just check your owner’s manual for the correct blade size and specific instructions on how to replace yours—or follow these seven easy steps. Consider Motorcraft® Winter Wipers, which have a neoprene anti-icing boot and application-driven pressure points to keep the blades on the windshield. Learn how to refill your washer fluid here.
3. Get your tires right. Winter’s icy, wet roads will affect your tires’ traction. But when are winter tires necessary? The general rule of thumb is that in areas of extreme snow and ice you should use winter tires, which are designed to push slush away and keep you on the road. In areas of light or moderate snow, go with all-season tires.
DIY: Find out which tires match your Ford vehicle and driving conditions here.
4. Check and change your oil. Nobody wants to be stuck on the highway when it’s 10 degrees outside. So keep in mind: Colder temperatures can cause oil to thicken, which makes it more difficult for the oil to
travel through your engine…which can lead to a failure.
DIY: We recommend Ford’s Motorcraft® oil, which is specially designed to prevent over-thickening in low temperatures.
Take it to your Ford Dealer Service Center if: you want to save time and increase convenience—an oil change is included in The Works™ package.
5. Regularly check your coolant. Not only does coolant keep your engine from overheating in the summer, it prevents engine fluids from freezing in the winter. But when your coolant ages, the freezing protection can diminish. Check your owner’s manual to find out the recommended interval between coolant changes.
DIY: Monitor your coolant levels every time you fill up your tank, and top up as needed—it’s simple.
6. Inspect belts and hoses for cracks or fraying.Pliable materials in belts and hoses are more likely to get brittle and break in the winter, because the cold makes them stiffer. A damaged belt will reduce your engine’s efficiency, and a leaky hose could lead to an overheated engine and costly repairs.
DIY: Look for frays, cracking or glazed surfaces in the belt and hoses. Pinch and squeeze the belt; if it pulls more than a half-inch, it might need to be adjusted.
Take it to your Ford Dealer Service Center if: you hear squealing sounds from the engine, which could mean your belts are damaged and need replacing.
7. Pay attention to your suspension. Every time you hit a bump in the road, your suspension takes a hit to smooth your ride. And because it is located on the underside of your vehicle, the suspension is especially susceptible to damage in the winter, because of the increased grime, salt, gravel and potholes.
DIY: Perform a bounce test. First, park your car in a safe environment. Second, push firmly on one side of the vehicle. It should bounce and settle back in one smooth motion.
Take it to the Beach Ford Service Center if: your vehicle rocks several times in the bounce test, you feel vibrations in the steering wheel or seat, or it shakes more than usual when you hit a bump.
Ford Motor Company and Petty’s Garage are teaming up to build a new 627-horsepower* Mustang GT – a limited-edition fastback inspired by the popular Petty’s Garage Mustang GT on display at last year’s SEMA show in Las Vegas.
Two versions of the Petty’s Garage Mustang GT will be built this year; the Stage 1 version will be limited to 100 units, while the even more exclusive Stage 2 version will total 43 units.
Stage 1 Petty’s Garage Mustang GT will feature a host of custom modifications – both visual tweaks and under the hood. A Petty’s Garage fascia at the front imparts a unique look, while a reworked rear fascia features a center-exit exhaust and prominently showcased race-inspired spoiler. Inside, custom embroidered head restraints, floor mats and Richard Petty’s own signature on the dashboard set this Mustang GT apart from the rest.
A Ford Racing/Roush supercharger, cold air intake, custom engine calibration and MagnaFlow exhaust system are fitted to Mustang GT’s 5.0-liter engine, boosting output to 627 horsepower. Power is delivered to the road by custom 20-inch Petty’s Garage HRE FlowForm wheels shod with Continental tires.
Stage 1 Mustang GT can be ordered in any color, with all unique bodywork painted to match in-house at Petty’s Garage.
Along with the features found on the Stage 1 car, the Stage 2 version includes a Petty’s Garage Wilwood big brake upgrade and a complete Petty’s Garage custom two-tone paint job. Stage 2 Mustang GT will ride on Petty’s Garage HRE three-piece forged-aluminum wheels.
Of the 43 Petty’s Garage Stage 2 Mustang GTs planned, only 42 remain, as rock ’n’ roll legend Brian Johnson has an order in for the first car. “This Mustang has just taken my breath away,” said Johnson, lead singer for AC/DC. “It really is one of the best cars I’ve ever driven. I didn’t have an American car, but I do now!”
Paint fit for ‘The King’
The Petty’s Garage Stage 2 Mustang GT’s custom two-tone paint job is identical to the 2014 SEMA show car. Using crushed-and-tumbled glass combined with iconic Petty Blue paint, Petty’s Garage has created a one-of-a-kind color for the lower half of the car. A custom tri-coat pearlescent blend of Ford Tuxedo Black complements Petty Blue for the upper half. “The King’s” legendary No. 43 is expertly ghosted into the paint on the fastback Mustang GT’s hood and C-pillar.
The Petty’s Garage Stage 1 car carries an MSRP of $62,210, while the Stage 2 car comes in at $92,210. Orders for this limited-edition Mustang GT can be placed at any Ford dealership on a first-come, first-served basis.
*Powertrain modifications are covered by a Ford Racing/Roush Performance parts limited warranty; Petty’s Garage components and installation carry a 36-month, 36,000-mile warranty from Petty’s Garage.
The all-new 2015 Ford F-150 is the toughest, smartest and most capable F-150 ever, and it’s also the only light-duty truck with an available snow plow prep kit for every cab – Regular, SuperCab and SuperCrew.
Using more high-strength steel in the frame and high-strength, military-grade, aluminum alloy in the body helped make the new F-150 as much as 700 pounds lighter. This leads to improved capability, performance and better handling, which is important for customers who need to plow snow. The new snow plow prep option is available as a $50 option (plow not included) on the 2015 F-150 with the 5.0-liter V8 engine.
F-Series trucks offer customers the widest range of plow weights to keep driveways, highways and parking lots clear of snow.
What’s better than a car that helps prevent spinouts once they occur? The answer at Ford Motor Company is a car that can predict a spin before it even begins.
The new 2015 Ford Focus features stability control technology that actively determines when a car meets the conditions that may lead to a spin and intervenes early to help prevent the driver from losing control.
The feature – known as enhanced transitional stability technology – can help deliver better handling in highly dynamic driving maneuvers. Information related to the car’s speed, steering wheel position, turn rate of the steering wheel and other input is considered to determine when a skid is imminent. Once a risk is identified, braking is applied to individual wheels to help the driver maintain control and continue on the intended path.
“By recognizing scenarios that can lead to a potential loss of driver control before oversteer has developed, the enhanced transitional stability system is setting the recovery process in motion quicker than ever before – resulting in smoother, more refined control,” said David Messih, Brake Controls manager, Ford North America.
Enhanced transitional stability technology is standard on the new Focus. It combines real-time data from sensors throughout the car to anticipate a potential spin by 100 to 200 milliseconds.
The innovation came about when engineers tried applying an algorithm already in use with Ford’s Roll Stability Control™ to the enhanced transitional stability technology. The result is a stability control system that predicts potential spins before they happen.
Engineers have been working hard to ensure the new Focus feels more connected to the road and is even easier to drive. Enhanced transitional stability technology is just one of the new and improved chassis control innovations developed by Ford engineers that lead to better driving dynamics and handling on the 2015 Ford Focus.
This evening we’re likely to see a few inches of snow, and a frosty coating can make highways slicker. In these conditions, be mindful of three fundamentals:
Keep clear: Visibility will be an issue as flurries and diminished daylight obscure your view. Be sure to clear the snow off all your windows before you drive, keep extra wiper fluid handy and leave your headlights on (which will also make you more visible to other drivers).
Slow it down: Increased moisture from snow and melting ice will make your tires lose traction, increasing your braking distance. So maintain a safe space between yourself and other drivers. Steer calmly and deliberately, and try to maintain a consistent, slower speed.
Brake right: Gentleness is key, especially on corners or turns. If you have ABS (anti-lock braking system), keep applying firm pressure to the pedal while steering gradually into a safe zone. If you feel a forceful throbbing, this is just the ABS doing its work. If you do not have ABS, you could pump your brakes: Apply pressure until the tires lock, release to let your wheels rotate, then repeat as you steer toward a safer area.
INTERMEDIATE: Moderate Snow Conditions
Your major worry is likely to be traction, as the accumulation of snow and ice will decrease your car’s ability to grip the road.
Master the uphill battle: Your main objective in driving uphill in snowy, slippery conditions is to maintain momentum and the right amount of tire spin. When approaching the hill, build up enough acceleration to maintain speed and grip when you begin the climb. If possible, shift into the highest practical gear to reduce wheel torque and the likelihood of spinning out. While four-wheel drive might help get you going on snow and ice, it does not add traction for steering or braking. So watch your speed because you will likely have to go downhill soon after you reach the top. Which brings us to…
Get downhill safely: Braking on a decline strains brake pads significantly and could increase your chances of slipping. As you approach a steep slope, slow down in anticipation of the acceleration caused by gravity. Select a low gear to allow engine braking and help prevent wheel lockup, then coast down the hill while lightly and progressively braking only as necessary.
ADVANCED: Heavy Snow Conditions
Extreme conditions require a different approach. We’re unlikely to see these conditions here in Hampton Roads, but it’s good to know how to handle snow you might encounter while on a road trip.
Maintain momentum: Basically, take advantage of it while you have it. Accelerate gently, and stick to a steady pace, even if just crawling. Once you stop, it might be hard to get going again.
If you stall out: Keeping in low gear and with your wheels straight, hit the gas lightly. If you feel your wheels slipping, stop, then go in reverse until they start to slip again. Repeat this until you rock yourself out of position. You might want to turn off AdvanceTrac ESC to let your wheels spin and give you full engine power to get out of the situation. Helpful hint: Antifreeze will also help melt the ice beneath your tires.
Know when and how to wait: Sometimes road conditions can be so severe, your best solution is not to drive at all. Find a place where you can rest your vehicle without getting snowed in. Plows usually clear exit ramps and rest areas first; you can also try the parking lots of large businesses, hotels or gas stations. Once parked, stay in your car (it is easy to get disoriented in a blizzard), and wrap yourself in winter clothing and a blanket. Running the engine occasionally will also help keep you warm, but make sure you free your tailpipe of snow to prevent carbon monoxide buildup. Leave your lights on to maintain visibility for other drivers. As soon as it’s safe enough, drive home.
This “speed dating” prank is hilarious! The clip shows a pretty blond woman going in her new car to what appear to be several blind dates. But it’s a setup, because what the guys don’t seem to realize is that she is a professional stunt driver — and they are in for a real shock as she spins, drifts and tears around a parking lot.
The 2015 Ford Mustang received a top safety rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The 2015 Mustang earned a five-star Overall Vehicle Score in NHTSA’s New Car Assessment Program (NCAP) testing.
The New Car Assessment Program is the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s evaluation program for new vehicle designs established to test for performance against safety threats. Now on sale at Ford dealers, the all-new 2015 Mustang received five stars in the frontal crash test, five stars in the side crash test and five stars in the rollover crash test.
Safety, semi-autonomous and driver assist features
The 2015 Mustang has a myriad of standard safety features aimed at protecting drivers and occupants, as well as semi-autonomous and driver assist features that are new to the vehicle.
Features on the 2015 Mustang include an all-new inflatable airbag restraint design, double the number of airbags in the vehicle, a robust package of peripheral crash sensors and enhanced exterior lighting.
The 2015 Ford Mustang also offers innovative semi-autonomous technologies including Adaptive Cruise Control. Driver assist features include BLIS® Cross-Traffic Alert and SYNC 911 Assist, which enables a mobile phone connected to SYNC to call 911 directly when needed. The system can also provide more detail about a crash to aid in the dispatch of the appropriate resources.
The 2015 Ford Edge Sport has been officially SAE-certified as the most powerful Edge ever, with the highest horsepower and torque ratings yet.
Powered by Ford’s newest EcoBoost® engine – a 2.7-liter V6 – the 2015 Ford Edge Sport builds on its reputation as the modern utility vehicle for people who want to have fun behind the wheel and look good doing it.
New Edge Sport boasts real performance
Edge Sport’s 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6 engine delivers a 10 percent increase in horsepower over the previous standard engine, a 3.7-liter V6, and a 25 percent increase in torque – for a total of 315 horsepower and 350 lb.-ft. Peak torque output is available at 2,750 rpm, far lower in the performance band than the 2014 model, for a better performance feel. The previous engine generated peak torque at 4,000 rpm.
With final ratings approved, the front-wheel-drive Edge Sport returns EPA-estimated test cycle fuel economy ratings of 18 mpg city, 27 mpg highway and 21 mpg combined. EPA-estimated ratings for the all-wheel-drive model are 17 mpg city, 24 mpg highway and 20 mpg combined. Actual mileage will vary. Even with improved performance, fuel economy estimates are either equal to or better than the 2014 model Edge Sport.
Using the same compacted graphite iron as Ford’s 6.7-liter Power Stroke®, the cylinder block of the 2.7-liter EcoBoost has a stiff and compact design that results in an impressive amount of power and torque for its size, while enabling refined noise, vibration and harshness control. A die-cast aluminum engine-block ladder frame and composite oil pan help save weight through the use of advanced materials where they are needed most.
The Edge Sport suspension has been upgraded with front and rear antiroll bars that are 15 percent stiffer than the base model. Unique rear monotube dampers are larger in diameter, while coil springs are 10 percent stiffer and offer 20 percent less body roll than the previous-generation setup. Enhanced damping gives Edge Sport improved road-holding capability – providing the driver with more control, sharper steering and greater confidence.
Edge Sport rides on 20-inch standard polished aluminum wheels with magnetic low-gloss painted pockets; 21-inch premium painted tarnished dark low-gloss aluminum wheels are available, as well as a summer-only tire option with the 21-inch wheels.
The vehicle is equipped with Active Noise Cancellation technology to manage and enhance the sound of the 2.7-liter EcoBoost engine. The system uses microphones strategically placed throughout the cabin to generate opposing sound waves. These waves are directed through the audio system to enhance overall cabin ambience.
Powerful looks set Edge Sport apart
The 2015 Edge Sport includes features that set it apart on the road and define it as a performance-inspired utility vehicle with attitude.
The new Edge has a stronger, more athletic shape with standard LED taillamps and LED signature lighting. The 2015 Edge is also available in new colors Electric Spice, Bronze Fire Metallic and Magnetic.
The interior features leather-trimmed sport seats with perforated suede inserts, aluminum brake and accelerator pedal covers, ambient lighting and metal-plated accents throughout. Other interior appointments include Ford SYNC® with 8-inch LCD touch screen in the center stack, two configurable LCD screens in the instrument cluster and a media hub containing two USB ports, an SD card reader and an auxiliary input jack. A 12-speaker Sony audio system is standard.
Available this spring
Along with the 2.7-liter EcoBoost, two other engine options are available on the 2015 Ford Edge. The standard twin-scroll 2.0-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder is rated at 245 horsepower at 5,500 rpm and 275 lb.-ft. of torque at 3,000 rpm (on 93-octane fuel), and returns EPA-estimated fuel economy ratings of 20 mpg city, 30 mpg highway and 24 mpg combined with front-wheel drive and 20 mpg city, 28 mpg highway and 23 mpg combined with all-wheel drive.
An optional 3.5-liter Ti-VCT V6 is rated at 280 horsepower at 6,500 rpm and 250 lb.-ft. at 4,000 rpm, returning EPA-estimated fuel economy ratings of 18 mpg city, 26 mpg highway and 21 mpg combined with front-wheel drive and 17 mpg city, 25 mpg highway and 20 mpg combined with all-wheel drive.
The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) named the F-150 and Focus Electric among the most environmentally-friendly vehicles for consumers in 2015. The F-150 with 2.7L EcoBoost was named the greenest standard pickup, and the Focus Electric was named as one of the 12 overall greenest vehicles on the market.
The Ford C-Max Hybrid was named a “Greener Choice” for 2015 as well.
Yesterday, Ford revealed the all-new Focus RS, a high-performance road car that debuts Ford Performance All-Wheel Drive with Dynamic Torque Vectoring Control, which contributes to performance never before seen in a Focus RS. The all-new Focus RS is equipped with a new 2.3-liter EcoBoost® engine producing well in excess of 315 horsepower.
Focus RS is the latest unveiling in a new era of Ford performance that will bring more than 12 performance vehicles to global customers by 2020.
In addition to pleasing enthusiasts, these vehicles help deliver the company’s One Ford plan for profitable growth, product excellence and innovation in every part of its business.
Developed by a small team of global Ford Performance engineers, the new Focus RS is the third generation in the line, following models launched in 2002 and 2009. It will be the 30th car to wear the legendary RS badge, following such technology trendsetters as the 1970 Escort RS1600 with 16 valves, 1985 Sierra RS Cosworth with turbocharging and radical aerodynamics and 1992 Escort RS Cosworth with four-wheel drive.
Sporting a dramatic exterior design that delivers enhanced aerodynamics and cooling, the new Focus RS offers technologies new to the RS line including Ford SYNC® connectivity system.
The all-new Focus RS is the first-ever RS model that will be sold around the world, including the United States, and produced for all markets at Ford’s Saarlouis, Germany, manufacturing plant beginning late this year.
Gymkhana and World Rallycross star Ken Block was brought on as a consultant on the all-new Focus RS, and joined the Ford Performance team at the preview event in Cologne, Germany –where the RS legend was born with the Ford 15M RS in 1968.
Innovative Ford Performance All-Wheel Drive offers a new level of handling
The all-new Focus RS exploits innovative new Ford Performance All-Wheel Drive with Dynamic Torque Vectoring to deliver a new level of handling capability and driver enjoyment, combining outstanding traction and grip with exciting agility and cornering speed.
The Ford Performance All-Wheel-Drive system is based on twin electronically controlled clutch packs on each side of the rear drive unit. These manage the car’s front/rear torque split, and can control the side-to-side torque distribution on the rear axle – delivering the “torque vectoring” capability that has a dramatic impact on handling and cornering stability.
The control unit in the rear drive unit continuously varies the front/rear and side-to-side torque distribution to suit the current driving situation, monitoring inputs from multiple vehicle sensors 100 times per second. A maximum of 70 percent of the drive torque can be diverted to the rear axle. Up to 100 percent of available torque at the rear axle can be sent to each rear wheel.
During cornering, the rear drive unit pre-emptively diverts torque to the outer rear wheel immediately based on inputs such as steering wheel angle, lateral acceleration, yaw and speed. This torque transfer has the effect of “driving” the car into the bend, achieving improved turn-in and stability, and virtually eliminating understeer.
The AWD system has been tuned to deliver exceptional grip – with lateral acceleration exceeding 1 g – and great cornering speed and acceleration out of a bend. With neutral and adjustable limit handling, and the ability to achieve controlled oversteer drifts at the track, Focus RS delivers an exceptional fun-to-drive experience.
To deliver optimum driving dynamics, the Ford Performance All-Wheel-Drive system was calibrated alongside the car’s advanced Electronic Stability Control, in particular the brake-based Torque Vectoring Control system that works in parallel with the torque-vectoring AWD. Other exclusive chassis features include sports suspension with spring rates, bushings and antiroll bars – all of which are stiffer than those found in Focus ST, and two-mode switchable dampers, which offer a firmer setting for track driving. A carefully tuned electric power-assisted steering system working in combination with a more rigid front suspension knuckle design and shorter-link arms delivers connected and responsive steering with outstanding feel.
Ford engineers worked closely with Michelin to develop a choice of high-performance 235/35 R19 tires to complement the driving dynamics of the Focus RS: a standard Pilot Super Sport tire for every-day use, and – for the first time on an RS – an optional Pilot Sport Cup 2 tire for enhanced vehicle dynamics on the track.
The vehicle’s exterior design has also been developed to support the dynamic objectives. Careful aerodynamic optimization of the front splitter, rear spoiler and underbody features eliminates lift forces, and the final design delivers balanced performance with zero lift front and rear for optimum high-speed handling and stability.
Unique powertrain for increased output
Ford’s EcoBoost technology powers Focus RS and nearly every new Ford vehicle. The specially engineered 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine has levels of power and torque that translate into impressive acceleration when combined with the exceptional all-wheel-drive traction.
Projected to produce well in excess of 315 horsepower, the custom unit shares its fundamental structure with the all-aluminum 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine in the all-new Mustang, but has been significantly upgraded through a comprehensive package of design changes.
Increased output is generated by a new low-inertia twin-scroll turbocharger with larger compressor that delivers significantly greater airflow, along with a much bigger intercooler to maximize charge density. Engine breathing is enhanced through a less restrictive intake design, and a large-bore high-performance exhaust system with an electronically controlled valve in the tailpipe that helps optimize the balance of back pressure and noise output.
The cylinder head is produced from an upgraded alloy material capable of withstanding higher temperatures, and is mounted on a more robust head gasket with improved thermal capability. The cylinder block employs stronger high-tensile cast iron liners.
Engine cooling also has been given the highest priority, with engineers creating additional space within the front of the vehicle to house a significantly larger radiator pack that provides the level of cooling demanded for hard circuit use.
Meticulous calibration work ensures that the power unit delivers excellent low-end responsiveness with a powerful mid-range pull, climbing to a free-revving top end up to a maximum rev limit of 6,800 rpm.
The six-speed manual transmission has been optimized for the enthusiast driver with a shorter gear lever to deliver faster and more accurate shifts. Both the transmission and the clutch have been upgraded with stronger components to cope with the engine’s increased torque output.
With its high-efficiency EcoBoost design featuring direct fuel injection, twin independent variable camshaft timing, advanced turbocharging and Auto Start-Stop as standard, the engine also delivers significantly improved fuel consumption.
High-performance design for stunning looks with optimum function
Focus RS exterior design is both dramatic and functional, with a more powerful and muscular character. Designers worked closely with Ford Performance to ensure that the necessary functional attributes were achieved, focusing on the aerodynamic downforce and balance delivered by the design, as well as the cooling demands of the powertrain and brakes.
RS features a powerful new front end appearance with a bold upper trapezoidal grille above the deep splitter, incorporating the largest possible apertures for engine cooling. A wide, muscular stance is emphasized by the lower wings and large outboard openings on each side of the car, which feed the brake cooling ducts and house vertically mounted lamps.
At the rear, the fascia panel is dominated by the exceptionally large diffuser, which optimizes airflow from under the vehicle and contains the twin round high-performance exhaust outlets. Focus RS for Europe and Asia markets will also get a clear central fog lamp. The distinctive rear roof spoiler is carefully integrated with the car’s silhouette through body-colored side panels featuring a subtle embossed RS logo.
The dynamic side profile is emphasized by sculptured rocker panels, and the bold wheel lips that house a choice of multi-spoke 19-inch RS alloy wheels – including a high-performance lightweight forged design finished in low-gloss black, which offers enhanced strength and impact resistance.
The high-performance character of Focus RS is reflected inside the car, where heavily bolstered partial-leather Recaro sports seats serve as the centerpiece of the cockpit.
The interior features the reworked Focus control layout with its simpler, more intuitive design. SYNC connectivity provides access to audio, navigation, climate control and mobile phones via voice control, and via a high-definition, 8-inch color touch screen. SYNC can be specified with rear view camera with park distance control, as well as a Sony premium sound system with 10-speakers including a subwoofer.
The RS driving experience is reinforced by a new flat-bottomed steering wheel with a soft-feel leather-covered rim, alloy pedals and unique instrument graphics within the main cluster. An additional bank of gauges above the center console displays turbocharger boost pressure, oil temperature and oil pressure.
Four striking exterior colors include Nitrous Blue, a vibrant four-coat metallic finish exclusive to RS, as well as Stealth Gray, Absolute Black and Frozen White. The car revealed in Cologne features the same special Liquid Blue color scheme first seen on the all-new Ford GT revealed last month at the North American International Auto Show.
Rich heritage of innovation and performance
Since the first Ford RS models took to the road, the line has been an essential element of Ford’s DNA, delivering technical innovation and performance on road and track. Dating back to the early days of Ford’s success in Rallye Sport, the first RS models established a reputation for advanced technology and driving exhilaration that continues to this day.
Sometimes they are unavoidable, those potholes and damaged road surfaces. You cringe and hold your breath as you are forced to drive right over the obstacle, hoping your vehicle comes through it without incident and that you aren’t too rattled either. But Ford vehicles are put through similar paces long before you’ll ever be behind the wheel and faced with that scenario.
The Ford Lommel Proving Ground in Belgium and Michigan Proving Ground in the U.S. have miles of test tracks that re-create potholes of various shapes and depths, as well as damaged surfaces and other extreme public-road conditions.
“We have created some of the worst potholes in Europe on our own test track. If our cars can pass these tests, then they can cope with almost anything they encounter on public roads,” said Eric-Jan Scharlee, technical specialist for Durability Testing at Lommel Proving Ground. “You name the road surface, we have it at our proving ground.”
The standard is repeated at Michigan Proving Ground. “We go over gravel. We go over cobblestone. We go full-throttle. We shake things up,” said Dan Coleman, manager of Global Durability Process in Dearborn, Mich.
Alongside simulated real-world surfaces are artificial testing potholes designed to place controlled loads on Ford vehicle suspension components and allow Ford engineers to measure the forces and demands placed on cars as they pass through them. “We use two types of test tracks at Ford to re-create the loads customers are seeing on public roads,” said Eric-Jan. “One type simulates actual public roads, such as Lower Dunton Road in Essex, U.K., while the other comprises a variety of potholes that have been artificially constructed to mimic different driving conditions.”
Several types of road conditions are simulated, including moderately rough roads such as those in Europe and North America and severely rough roads like those in emerging markets, taking into account that weather conditions can make these roads even worse.
Engineers at the Lommel Proving Ground and Michigan Proving Ground test vehicles for all global markets, and all new Ford models are put through a tough testing and development process to ensure they not only offer class-leading levels of ride comfort for occupants, but are easily capable of withstanding the loads placed upon components by damaged road surfaces. Rigorous testing and development processes have been established for chassis and suspension systems.
“The challenge for a suspension system is when it exits the pothole,” said Simon Mooney, test engineer for Road Load Data at Dunton Technical Centre in Essex. “The impact can be like hitting a curb. We test all the wheel and tire sizes that we produce for our vehicles to their limit, so we’re confident they can cope.”
Chassis and suspension testing for passenger cars is conducted in two phases, with the first phase designed to simulate the extreme demands placed on the vehicle’s suspension and major structures over the course of its lifetime. During the second phase, the emphasis shifts to the entire vehicle, including high speed and rural road driving simulations. During these tests, high-tech equipment is used to record the loads and strains placed upon suspension components. “We use specially instrumented wheels on the car that measure the force and corresponding moments in three directions,” said Simon. “On some vehicles, there are various sensors totaling some 200 channels through which to get the data.”
Ford develops suspension testing for global customer requirements, and testing procedures and requirements at proving grounds around the world are commonized. To re-create realistic road conditions, Ford engineers survey drivers of every vehicle segment in different parts of the world asking them to rate the roads they drive on and how they use their vehicles. Then they create a statistical profile of the driver, the type of roads the driver uses, and his or her driving habits and apply it to a durability test cycle at the respective proving ground. Using this data, engineers can extrapolate how much load is likely to be placed on the vehicle over the course of its lifetime, which tells them how much the vehicle needs to be able to withstand.
Both Lommel and Michigan Proving Ground feature replicated real-life road surfaces from around the world. Visitors to the facility in Belgium, for instance, may be surprised to find road signs indicating they have traveled to France, the U.K. and the U.S., all within less than half a mile, but it is through such painstaking re-creation of real road surfaces from across the globe that Ford is able to deliver the products that meet and exceed the requirements of real-world drivers.
I hope you all had a Merry Christmas and a Happy Holiday Season! Happy New Year, too! 2014 was another great year for Ford and Beach Ford and 2015 is poised to be ever better. With the introduction of the all-new 2015 Ford Mustang and the aluminum, totally redesigned F-150, this year should be very exciting, indeed! I can’t remember a time when THE two most iconic Ford vehicles got complete makeovers in the same model year, but now is as good a time as ever. So far, everyone who has purchased a 2015 Mustang or F-150 has been ecstatic and we look to continue the trend! Come pick yours out today!
How about the news from the Detroit Auto Show this year? Yes, Ford Motor Company is doing it again. In late 2016, the legendary Ford GT will return, after a 10 year hiatus. Yes, this is the newest version of the famous super-car from the 1960’s, the multiple-Le Mans-winning, Ford GT-40. I can’t tell you how exciting and good for the Ford brand this is. Whenever a manufacturer spends the time and the money and allows their engineers to pull out all the stops on a vehicle design, its usually good for all the other vehicles that manufacturer sells, as well. The industry term is “halo-car” which ultimately tends to attract attention even from those who might never consider a Ford product. A halo-car causes people to look at the overall Ford brand in positive ways like never before. This baby will not disappoint. It will be constructed of carbon-fiber and will be powered by a twin-turbo charged, 3.5L Ecoboost that gets over 600 horsepower. Take a look using this link; http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2015-01-12/ford-said-to-unveil-gt-supercar-as-it-returns-to-le-mans.html. You won’t regret it!
All this means one thing. Ford is pushing the envelope and is fully into the “performance car realm.” This can only mean great things for the cars and trucks most of us will want to drive in the future. As these performance vehicles hit the market, Ford incorporates the successful aspects of them into other vehicle lines. That is exciting! Will the new Ford GT race at Le Mans? Ford isn’t saying, just yet, but you can be sure that the racing heritage begun by Henry Ford, himself, is alive and well at the Motor Company. Stay tuned, the best is yet to come!
Thank you for being a member of the Beach Ford Family,
Out of a plume of dust, a metallic blue beast zooms forward with a roar of its engine. Not bad for a toy.
At first sight, it’s hard to call the Rip Rod, a collaboration between Ford, Hot Wheels and Los Angeles–based production studio Bandito Brothers, anything else. The Rod’s fat tires, candy wrapper colors and long, bent shape are the stuff of kids’ dreams. But its shiny exterior only shows off half the fun; underneath its hood sits a dynamic 1.0L, 3-cylinder EcoBoost® engine, giving it as much power as it has whimsy.
“It’s a very dynamic car to see in action,” says Scott Denby, marketing and strategy manager for Ford Racing. “It’s really an advanced piece of engineering.”
When it was first built, the Rip Rod was a shell of what it is today. Designed by Ford and Bandito Brothers for the SEMA auto circuit last year, the vehicle acted as an impressive prop for the Transit Connect, which would tow it on stage during shows. But after the circuit was over, Bandito Brothers wanted it to become functional. Just as they watched their toy Hot Wheels zoom loops around orange plastic tracks as kids, they wanted to see a life-size one rip through the desert.
So they approached Ford Racing, which wanted to use the Rod as an opportunity to help accelerate the evolution of racing by using a small and flexible engine, lowering the vehicle’s weight while also giving it muscle. They knew the perfect machine for the job: the same EcoBoost that can be found in the Ford Fiesta, Focus and C-MAX, among other Ford models.
If there was any doubt that the EcoBoost wouldn’t be up for the job, it vanished when Bandito Brothers took the Rod to the desert last summer and filmed it ripping donuts in the sand. Watching video of the run, it’s exhilarating to see a childhood toy come to life in such a dramatic way. It’s even more thrilling to think it’s doing it with an engine that is available in a Ford street vehicle.
Ford Mustang is one of the most popular cars ever built, and now it has the distinct honor of being one of the most common passwords on the Internet, a recent study reveals.
According to SplashData – a company specializing in password management – the word “mustang” was the 16th most common password found on the Internet in 2014, the only car moniker that found its way into the top 25. Not only that, Mustang is a slayer of superheroes – more popular than “Batman” and “Superman” as people’s secret code for accessing their personal networks and accounts.
“We’re flattered people want to use ‘mustang’ as their password, but alone, it just isn’t strong enough to be secure,” said Keith Moss, Ford Director of Cyber Security. “We encourage people to use ‘mustang,’ but we recommend they strengthen their password by mixing upper and lower case letters, numbers, acronyms and symbols to make it unique.”
Here are a few suggestions for strengthening your “mustang” password:
1) Add numbers to your password (favorite Mustang model year, year you bought your Mustang or year you sold the car)
2) Incorporate Mustang option codes, paint codes, engine codes or digits from your VIN
3) Create acronyms for modifications made to your Mustang (FRSC, for Ford Racing SuperCharger, for example)
4) Include your favorite driving road or road trip destination
Keep in mind that using the same password on all websites is not recommended; a password manager can help keep multiple Mustang-related passwords organized and easy-to-access.
While you should always keep your Mustang-inspired password a secret, wear your appreciation for the iconic pony car proudly and loudly.
The 2015 Ford Expedition earned a five-star Overall Vehicle Score from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the U.S. government’s highest possible overall rating.
The New Car Assessment Program is the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s evaluation program for new automobile designs. It was established to test for performance against safety threats. It includes tests for front and side impacts.
Safety and driver-assist features
Expedition has a myriad of standard safety features aimed at protecting drivers and occupants, as well as driver-assist features that are new to the vehicle.
Standard safety features include AdvanceTrac® with Roll Stability Control™, Safety Canopy® side-curtain airbags, SOS Post-Crash Alert System, tire pressure monitoring system and traction control.
The 2015 model debuts driver-assist technologies to the Expedition nameplate, like available radar-based Blind Spot Information System with cross-traffic alert. Using sensor-based radar technology, BLIS® can help detect when a vehicle is in a driver’s blind spot and flashes a warning light in the appropriate sideview mirror.
Cross-traffic alert uses radar to help detect vehicles approaching from the side when a driver is slowly backing out of a parking spot or driveway. When a vehicle is detected, an audible warning sounds and a visual cue will be issued in the message center.
Other new technologies include a standard rearview camera, keyless entry with push-button start, and front and rear parking sensors.
Stylish, powerful, fuel-efficient
The 2015 Expedition is the most powerful and fuel-efficient Expedition yet, offering customers a full-size utility vehicle with a stylish design and fresh interiors across a diverse lineup that includes a new Platinum trim level.
The 3.5-liter EcoBoost® V6, the only engine available for Expedition in North America, generates 365 horsepower and 420 lb.-ft. of torque, and with an EPA-estimated rating of 16 mpg city and 22 mpg highway with two-wheel-drive. Actual mileage will vary. Expedition also offers best-in-class maximum cargo space for the extended-length version, and available best-in-class towing of up to 9,200 pounds when properly equipped. It all adds up to a truly useful utility vehicle.
Ford was the No. 1-selling utility brand in the United States for 2014, making for the fourth straight year the company has maintained its utility vehicle leadership in America.
Last week Ford unveiled the new Shelby® GT350R Mustang, the most track-ready road-going production Mustang ever built.
In 1965, Ford and Carroll Shelby developed a road-racing version of the popular Ford Mustang – the Shelby GT350 Competition model. Lighter, more powerful and with a highly developed suspension, it is one of the most iconic racing Mustangs ever produced.
Arriving later this year, the new Shelby GT350R has been designed and engineered in the same spirit, delivering never-before-seen track capability from a Mustang – thanks to innovations in aerodynamics, chassis engineering and light-weighting.
The car features the first-ever production V8 from Ford with a flat-plane crankshaft – the most powerful naturally aspirated engine Ford has ever produced – plus a specially tuned suspension. It is fitted with revised spring rates and antiroll bars, lower ride height, unique track-tuned alignment settings, revised bushings and jounce bumpers, cross-axis ball joints in the front suspension, and revised calibration controlling the MagneRide dampers.
Track technology for the street Lightweight carbon fiber wheels are standard on Shelby GT350R, making Ford the first major automaker to introduce this innovative wheel technology as standard equipment.
Carbon fiber wheels have been offered on only a handful of exotic supercars and will benefit Shelby GT350R performance by shaving critical unsprung weight and reducing rolling inertia. The 19×11-inch front and 19×11.5-inch rear wheels provide approximately 13 pounds of unsprung weight reduction per wheel and offer higher levels of stiffness than equivalent aluminum wheels.
The lightweight wheels will be shod in Michelin’s top-shelf Pilot Sport Cup 2 high-performance tires with rubber compound and a construction unique to Shelby GT350R. This combination of incredibly stiff and light wheels with bespoke tires offers customers exceptional steering feel and levels of performance.
Weight reduction in pursuit of performance Ford engineers delivered against aggressive targets for weight reduction on the Shelby GT350R. If a part did not make the car faster around a road course, it was considered for deletion.
Items removed include air conditioning, the stereo system, rear seats, trunk floorboard and carpet, backup camera and emergency tire sealer and inflator. Exhaust resonators also have been removed for weight savings with the benefit of creating a sharper exhaust tone.
Shelby GT350R is more than 130 pounds lighter than the Shelby GT350 Track Pack model, which has proven its durability in multiple 24-hour racetrack tests.
For customers seeking more comfort in their Shelby GT350R, Ford is offering an optional Electronics Package. Included is dual-zone air conditioning, 8-inch touch screen with navigation, seven-speaker audio system, turn signal mirrors and more.
Aggressive aerodynamics Shelby GT350R has been optimized for aerodynamic excellence. Details including the hood vent for heat extraction and lift reduction, underbody belly pans front and rear, an aggressive diffuser, vented wheel wells and turbulence-reducing fender vents, wheel air curtains and side skirts all remain on Shelby GT350R, but the car’s downforce capability has been increased.
Revisions to the front splitter maximize downforce, while an all-new high-efficiency carbon fiber rear wing has been added in anticipation of competition. The wing moves the vehicle’s center of pressure rearward while improving downforce and lift balance – ideal for high-speed track work.
World-class powertrain The new 5.2-liter dual-overhead-cam V8 engine is the first-ever production V8 from Ford with a flat-plane crankshaft – an architecture typically found only in racing applications or exotic European sports cars.
Unlike traditional V8s, where the connecting rods are attached to the crankshaft at 90-degree intervals, this design evenly spaces all crank pins at 180-degree intervals to optimize high-speed engine breathing. It is the most powerful naturally aspirated production Ford engine ever, with more than 500 horsepower and more than 400 lb.-ft. of torque.
An air-to-oil engine oil cooler typically found only on race cars maintains engine temperatures under the most severe conditions, as does a standard cooler for the six-speed manual transmission.
A Ford-tuned limited-slip Torsen differential with 3.73 axle ratio is optimized for cornering grip and straight-line traction, while an electronically modulated rear-mounted air-to-oil differential cooler maintains ideal temperatures during track driving.
Dedicated R design details Aside from carbon fiber wheels, larger front splitter and rear wing, Shelby GT350R features distinct design details. Exterior touches include red painted brake calipers, red pin striping at the edges of the optional over-the-top racing stripes and Shelby GT350R badging. Inside is high-contrast red stitching, Shelby GT350R badging and the D-shaped steering wheel fitted with a red center mark at the top.
New breed of performance The limited-production Shelby GT350R will be available in the United States and Canada later this year, and is one of more than 12 new Ford Performance vehicles coming by 2020.
The all-new Ford GT – a technology showcase for top EcoBoost® performance, aerodynamics and lightweight carbon fiber construction – today earned the prestigious EyesOn Design Award for best production vehicle. The ultra-high-performance supercar was unveiled Monday at the 2015 North American International Auto Show.EyesOn Design, the official design awards for NAIAS, honors the best production and concept vehicles making global debuts in Detroit. Judges include current and former design leaders from global automakers and transportation departments at top art schools.The all-new supercar represents the company’s commitment to innovation through performance. Its advanced, lightweight composites will help serve Ford Motor Company’s entire product lineup moving forward.
A next-generation, 600-plus-horsepower twin-turbocharged EcoBoost® V6 engine demonstrates remarkable efficiency – a key attribute of its endurance racing-derived powertrain. The engine is mated to a seven-speed dual-clutch transaxle that provides for near-instantaneous gear changes and exceptional driver control.
Aerodynamic efficiency is at the heart of the design of the Ford GT, with every slope and shape designed to minimize drag. An active rear spoiler is keyed to both speed and driver input, deploying and adjusting its height and/or pitch angle depending on conditions.
Beginning production in 2016, Ford GT arrives in select global markets to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Ford GT race cars placing 1-2-3 at the 1966 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Ford F-150, Expedition, Explorer, Mustang, Shelby GT500, Fiesta, Transit van and Transit Connect are recipients of the Edmunds.com 2015 Most Popular awards.
These Ford vehicles rate among the top three most-researched vehicles in their respective categories on the website over a 10-month period.
Ford vehicles are among the top vehicles in seven out of 22 Edmunds categories, with Ford Transit and Transit Connect being the most researched in the van category.
“We are proud to see more interest in Ford vehicles than any other brand on Edmunds.com,” said Chantel Lenard, Ford director, U.S. Marketing. “The fact so many people are researching Ford vehicles shows our product portfolio is truly world-class and we offer the vehicles customers want.”
The awards are determined based on the number of unique visitors to Edmunds.com researching a vehicle’s inventory, model detail, reviews, and build and price pages from Jan. 1 to Oct. 31, 2014.
The 2015 Ford F-150, which has established a new standard for full-size pickups with best-in-class gasoline fuel efficiency and capability, was named Truck Trend’s 2015 Pickup Truck of the Year. Each contender was evaluated against key criteria, including design, capability, performance and fuel efficiency.
With 753,851 sales in 2014, more than 220,000 over its nearest competitor, Ford F-Series has now extended its leadership to 38 straight years as America’s best-selling truck and 33 straight years as America’s best-selling vehicle.
Toughest, most efficient F-150 ever The all-new F-150’s improved performance is enabled by weight savings achieved through the use of high-strength steel and high-strength, military-grade, aluminum alloy, as well as smart engineering. The weight savings not only improve fuel efficiency, but capability and performance, too. Combined with EcoBoost®engine technology, F-150 now tows as much as 1,100 more pounds and hauls as much as 530 more pounds than the current model, with a 5 percent to 16 percent better power-to-weight ratio.
Up to 700 pounds lighter than current models, the new F-150 returns an EPA-estimated 5 percent to 29 percent better fuel economy, depending on engine and driveline configuration on the combined cycle.
New technologies mean smartest F-150 ever Numerous groundbreaking features debut in the all-new F-150, including 11 available class-exclusive technologies. Highlights include:
360-degree camera view uses exterior cameras to create a bird’s-eye view of the truck to help drivers park, maneuver in tight spots, and navigate narrow roads and trails
Integrated loading ramps enable easy loading of ATVs, motorcycles and mowers
BoxLink™ combines metal brackets and custom cleats to secure a variety of accessories in the cargo box – from ramps to storage bins to bed dividers
LED headlamps and taillamps provide excellent nighttime visibility and illumination
Trailer hitch assist adds a new rearview camera feature that incorporates a dynamic line based on steering wheel angle in the display to help owners line up their truck and trailer with no spotter or need to exit the vehicle
Remote tailgate release allows for tailgate to be not only opened but also locked and unlocked with the key fob
Awards and accolades earned The 2015 Ford F-150 has won the following awards and accolades:
Detroit Free Press 2015 Truck of the Year
Detroit News 2015 Vehicle of the Year
Kelley Blue Book Best Buy Truck
Kelley Blue Book Best Buy Overall
Popular Science Automotive Grand Award Winner Best of What’s New
Texas Auto Writers Association Truck of Texas
Texas Auto Writers Association Luxury Pickup Truck
Texas Auto Writers Association Full-Size Pickup Truck
Texas Auto Writers Association Best Technology Feature for high-strength, military-grade, aluminum alloy
New England Motor Press Association Yankee Cup
Automotive Fleet Magazine 2014 Fleet Truck of the Year
Motor Press Guild 2014 Innovation Vehicle of the Year Over $30K
AutoGuide 2015 Reader’s Choice Truck of the Year
Automobile Journalists Association of Canada 2015 Best New Pickup Truck
Ford at the 2015 Consumer Electronics Show is highlighting how it is using innovation not only to create advanced new vehicles but also to help change the way the world moves by solving today’s growing global transportation challenges.
The company announced its Ford Smart Mobility plan to use innovation to take it to the next level in connectivity, mobility, autonomous vehicles, the customer experience and big data. Ford also announced 25 mobility experiments around the world this year to test breakthrough transportation ideas to create better customer experiences, more flexible user-ship models and social collaboration that can reward customers.
Also at CES, Ford is demonstrating SYNC® 3, its most advanced vehicle connectivity system, while highlighting semi-autonomous vehicles the company has on the road today and fully autonomous vehicles now in development.
SYNC 3 Ford highlighted SYNC 3, the company’s new communications and entertainment system that is faster, more intuitive and easier to use with enhanced response to driver commands.
SYNC 3’s more conversational speech recognition technology, a more smartphone-like touch screen and easy-to-read graphics will help millions of drivers connect with their lives and control their smartphone while on the road.
The next-generation system builds on the capability of SYNC technology already in more than 10 million vehicles on the road globally. SYNC 3 begins arriving on new vehicles this year.
Ford autonomous vehicles Ford also highlighted the semi-autonomous vehicles it has on the road today and fully autonomous vehicles now in development for the future.
“We’re already manufacturing and selling semi-autonomous vehicles that use software and sensors to steer into both parallel and perpendicular parking spaces, adjust speed based on traffic flow or apply the brakes in an emergency,” Nair said. “There will be a Ford autonomous vehicle in the future, and we take putting one on the road very seriously.”
Ford’s semi-autonomous vehicle features available today include lane-keeping assist, adaptive cruise control, Pre-Collision Assist with Pedestrian Detection and active park assist – with Traffic Jam Assist coming.
A fully autonomous Ford Fusion Hybrid research vehicle is undergoing road testing. The vehicle uses the same semi-autonomous technology in Ford vehicles today, while adding four LiDAR sensors to generate a real-time 3D map of the surrounding environment.
The vehicle can sense objects around it using the LiDAR sensors, and uses advanced algorithms to help it learn to predict where vehicles and pedestrians might move.
“Our priority is not in making marketing claims or being in a race for the first autonomous car on the road,” Fields said. “Our priority is in making the first Ford autonomous vehicle accessible to the masses and truly enhancing customers’ lives.
“Henry Ford taught us long ago that a good business makes excellent products and earns a healthy return,” Fields added. “A great business does all that while creating a better world. That is what continues to drive us each day.”
A friend once mentioned it was important that he liked what he drove, since he averaged three hours in his car every work day because of the commute. We assumed he was referring to comfort and amenities, but he clarified that spending all that time staring at his hood in bumper-to-bumper traffic meant he had to love the color of the car. And believe us, that look-at-me bright yellow paint matched his personality, too.
Ford understands that color can make a statement about you, not to mention it’s one of the first things people notice about your vehicle. Bold colors with fun names remain a hot trend, and that’s not lost on Ford, which started its own wave of trendsetting bright colors with the Mustang in Grabber Blue and the F-150 SVT Raptor’s Molten Orange, as well as the Fiesta’s Bright Magenta and Lime Squeeze. “Color matters. One of the first things people ask when you buy a new car is, ‘What color?’” said Susan Swek, Ford Color Specialist. “Ford is taking bold steps in terms of the look and the appearance, doing some new things. The Lime Squeeze on Fiesta did amazingly well, exceeding expectations. It’s been almost two years and it’s still doing well. Men, women, all ethnic groups, all ages, people really like it.”
“Color lets people add a personal touch to their lives, something that speaks to them and expresses a little bit of their personality,” Susan continued. “Colors like Ruby Red, Race Red, Blue Candy and Ginger Ale are bright, vibrant additions to the palette. Of course, some people gravitate to the classics, the core colors, so we strive within Ford to achieve the best blacks, silvers, whites and grays, putting a fresh, modern spin on them.”
Did you know colors have even been tied to the state of the economy on some level? “Are brighter colors a hopeful sign? I think so,” Susan said. “The color, the type of the material, that all becomes more important to people as they become more aware of the impact of their purchase.” You could say people form an emotional connection with color, which is why Ford paint colors are deep, bold and, yes, even mysterious. Ford has talked to dealers who have said customers have bought a car off the lot based on its color.
“We did a massive color overhaul a number of years ago, stepping back from the palette in terms of design leadership for mass volume. We really raised the bar in our paint quality and the appearance, so we’re staying solid and consistent. But each vehicle gets one or two new colors every year,” Susan explained.
“Consumers can look forward to tinted metallic and neutrals, more depth and range in color options and complex tri-coats, which provide more shine and highlights,” she revealed. “The color trends coming out of Ford are going to be very diverse. We’re pushing the limits of technology to move color forward.”
And eye-catching color isn’t lost on the woman specializing in eye-catching color: “When I saw a Blue Candy Tinted Clearcoat Focus driving down the street for the first time, it actually stopped me in my tracks,” Susan said.
Ford Motor Company and AccuWeather are joining together to integrate one of the country’s leading weather apps featuring hyper-localized weather forecasting into the vehicle.
AccuWeather, a global leader in digital weather information, is introducing its MinuteCast™ to Ford SYNC®AppLink™ customers. The technology uses an exact street address or GPS location to provide minute-by-minute weather forecasting, information about precipitation type, intensity and duration to the driver.
By selecting MinuteCast on the vehicle display menu, the driver will see a static image of the weather condition he or she will soon face, and the time the precipitation is expected to happen on the route. An audio warning will also be delivered. The service is available for a growing list of countries worldwide including the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland and Japan.
Steven Smith, chief digital officer for AccuWeather, said the AppLink-enabled AccuWeather app will make getting this information easier for commuters.
“We are thrilled to have our award-winning app available to drivers through SYNC AppLink,” said Smith. “With important features such as severe weather alerts and AccuWeather MinuteCast, our minute-by-minute precipitation forecast, Ford SYNC AppLink is connecting users with the weather information they need when they need it as they travel, to help provide a better driving experience.”
Ford set the benchmark for in-car connectivity with SYNC, which allows drivers to pair their mobile phones, make and receive calls, and operate other features hands-free using voice control.
The new technology will be demonstrated at the 2015 International CES, the largest consumer electronics show, Jan. 6-9 in Las Vegas.
Ford Motor Company today announced the Radio Disney smartphone app will soon be available to Ford SYNC® AppLink™ users. Drivers will be able to stream music devoted to kids, tweens and families 24 hours a day inside a Ford vehicle at the touch of a button.
The Radio Disney app goes to work when the driver connects his or her smartphone to available Ford SYNC via Bluetooth. A static image of an artist’s CD cover will display on the screen along with play and pause buttons, allowing the driver to make music selections.
Radio Disney is a 24-hour radio network devoted to kids, tweens and families. The app features family-friendly music by some of today’s most popular artists, as well as video with artist interviews and live performances. It is widely recognized as a music industry influencer, reaching nearly 21 million listeners each week.
Ford set the benchmark for in-car connectivity with SYNC. Through a paired mobile phone, Ford SYNC allows drivers to make and receive calls, as well as operate other features hands-free using voice controls. With Ford SYNC AppLink, customers can control their compatible apps using voice commands or buttons on the vehicle display. With the launch of available SYNC 3, Ford’s next-generation communications and entertainment system, AppLink will automatically discover and load the Radio Disney app onto the in-vehicle screen.
Ford SYNC AppLink is already in more than 1.5 million vehicles on the road in North America.
Radio Disney for Ford SYNC AppLink will be on display at the 2015 International CES in Las Vegas, Jan. 6-9, and available to customers in early 2015.
Ford’s award-winning EcoBoost® engine lineup not only has great EPA-estimated fuel economy ratings, it is also becoming a favorite family of engines in the performance tuning community.
From the infancy of the automobile, tinkerers have always chased more power by removing original components and replacing them with expensive aftermarket parts. This can lead to added performance, but at a cost to fuel efficiency, durability or driving comfort most owners would never accept.
For example, while replacing a camshaft can result in added horsepower, but typically a smooth idle must be sacrificed. Replacements can include new exhaust and intake manifolds, high-flow fueling systems and sometimes superchargers. This kind of tuning requires significant know-how and for the vehicle to be out of operation for some time.
Now, with the advent of computer-controlled engines, tuners have begun modifying a vehicle’s original programming for increased engine performance in the areas they choose. The technologies in Ford EcoBoost engines make their efforts even more effective.
Advanced EcoBoost technology includes direct injection, variable cam timing and turbocharging that, together, offer excellent power density and EPA-estimated fuel economy ratings straight from the factory. In the hands of engine tuning experts, tweaking these attributes can result in tremendous gains in horsepower and torque output, at an inexpensive price tag.
Not all enthusiasts are concerned about maintaining their factory warranty, and for those Ford has committed to working with aftermarket tuning companies to enable the development of high-quality parts and accessories to maximize the performance of Ford vehicles. Aftermarket tuners have achieved impressive performance gains for the all-new 2.3-liter EcoBoost I-4 in the 2015 Ford Mustang. Several tuners, including Mountune and Full-Race Motorsports, showcased their modified EcoBoost Mustangs at the 2014 SEMA Show.
By working with respected turbocharging engine experts from around the world including Mountune and Full-Race Motorsports, Ford is demonstrating a commitment to a new breed of forced-induction performance. Expect to see more exciting new options from Ford Racing in the near future.
A successful business is made up of many things. Planning, money, ideas, marketing, service, follow-up, products, and the team. By far, the most important of these is “the team.” It’s almost a cliché since, by now, everyone has heard some variation of “the team” and the importance of being a good one in the business world. Yes, good teams and their ability to perform are crucial to any enterprise or purpose, but any really good team is always contains outstanding individuals. And in business, these individuals who are so crucial to “the team” have usually been around a while.
Beach Ford recently had its Holiday Party at Chic’s Oyster Bar off of Shore Drive in Virginia Beach. Each year this occasion allows me to recognize some of our team members who have truly made a career in the automotive business and have chosen to do this at Beach Ford. It is always a highlight of my Holiday Season when I get the chance to recognize some of our true professionals who have, in some cases, worked for decades in assisting Beach Ford customers with their transportation needs. We all know someone, be it the long time waiter at our favorite restaurant or person at the hardware store who knows you by name. The checkout clerk at the 7-11 where you get your morning coffee who always has a good word and a smile when you enter the store. These people are the heart of any business. They ARE the business!
This past week it was a pleasure to recognize some of the best team members in the history of Beach Ford. Our Parts Manager, Rick Hoover with 20 years. Service Technician, Jeff Ferrier also with 20 years. Diana Tase with 25 years and Jeff Tuell with 30 years, all at one dealership! Rose Moore, Tommy Martin, and Chris Moniere all hit the 15 years mark. Leon Baughns and Matt Cuthbertson both making 10 years helping our customers. Cecil Perry has been helping people realize their dream car or truck for over 41 straight years! I am often recognized in public, largely due to our TV advertising, but I will be the first one to tell you that I only make up a small part of what makes our company great. It is the people, like the ones I have listed, that make Beach Ford. Period.
Former Ford Motor Company boss and later at Chrysler, Lee Iacocca famously said, “In the end, all business operations can be reduced to three words: people, product, and profits. Unless you have a good team, you can’t do much with the other two.” Truer words have not been spoken. I am very grateful for the longevity and expertise of the Beach Ford team. They are the business.
Today’s batteries are simple to maintain with regular checkups from a technician as part of Ford’s The Works Fuel Saver Package. They’re pretty much trouble-free for the vehicle owner, although there is still some acid corrosion that accumulates at the terminal, where the connection cables meet the battery.
2. CLEANING IT UP
As part of your regular servicing, your Ford technician will remove the corrosion from the terminals with a wire brush and an effective cleaner designed for this purpose. By assuring a clean and proper connection you can be sure that you get the longest battery life possible.
3. THE TEST
Age, extreme hot and cold temperatures, and totally discharging the battery are all factors that affect battery life. There’s no obvious way to know when your battery is going to fail, but testing it for cold cranking amperage (CCA) will tell you if it’s getting weak. As the vehicle gets older, CCA decreases and the battery loses the power that turns the starter over. A CCA test is provided in The Works Fuel Saver Package, so you can identify a weakening battery before a failure occurs.
4.THE RIGHT REPLACEMENT
If a battery does fail, Motorcraft has two great battery choices: The Tested Tough Max with a 100-month pro-rated warranty with three-year free replacement, and the Tested Tough Plus, which includes an 84-month pro-rated warranty with 18-month free replacement.
It may be hard to believe, but the first Ford Explorer debuted as a 1991 model. Here we are, more than two decades later with more than 7 million of the SUVs sold in the U.S. to date. And on November 19, 2014, the new 2016 Explorer was shown for the first time at the LA Auto Show!
There are big changes coming with the new Explorer, including a new Platinum series. This new trim level for the SUV will feature real wood, brushed-aluminum accents, Nirvana leather, multicontour seats, leather-wrapped heated steering wheel and an all-new 500-watt Audio System from Sony® .
Also new in the Explorer will be a 2.3-liter EcoBoost® engine that will be available in base, XLT and Limited models. The 3.5-liter V6 engine will be standard in the base, XLT and Limited models with a six-speed SelectShift® automatic transmission. The Sport and Platinum series will have a standard 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 which will also be mated to a six-speed SelectShift automatic transmission with paddle shifters.
Plus, the 2.3-lieter EcoBoost can be paired with an available tow package and Intelligent 4WD System with Terrain Management System.TM
The 4WD System continuously monitors wheel speed, throttle position and steering angle, and it will determine the optimal amount of front and rear torque for the conditions in order to limit slip. Using a dial located on the center console, drivers can select one of four terrain management modes – normal, snow, sand or rutted mud – to set how the engine, transmission, brakes and Four-Wheel Drive System will operate.
The innovative technology theme continues throughout the new Explorer. You can opt for available front and rear cameras, which have wide-angle lenses and even a washer. There’s available enhanced active park assist with perpendicular park assist, park-out assist and semi-automatic parallel parking assist, which will aid in parking and pulling out of a parallel parking space.* The convenient foot-activated, hands-free liftgate is also available: with the key in your pocket or purse, you simply kick your foot under the rear bumper and the power liftgate automatically opens.
The new Explorer will be on sale in 2015.
*Driver-assist features are supplemental and do not replace the driver’s judgment and need to control the vehicle.
Sony® is a registered trademark of the Sony Corporation
Clever usage of recycled materials is becoming the norm this century, and the Ford “Reduce, reuse and recycle” commitment is part of the company’s broader global sustainability strategy for reducing its environmental footprint. What happened when the two concepts once again collided at Ford? Perhaps the oddest-sounding partnership of all: carpet and cylinder head covers.
The efforts by Ford to use renewable materials in its vehicles resulted in the introduction of EcoLon®, a nylon made from 100 percent recycled carpet. The EcoLon material from Wellman Engineering Resins offers an eco-friendly, high-quality alternative to typical cylinder head covers. The cylinder head covers are manufactured by Dana Holding Corporation, and are used on the 3.0-liter Duratec engine in the Ford Fusion and Escape and on the 5.0-liter engine in the Mustang and F-150.
“By working with Wellman and Dana, Ford has found a way to bring green applications to a new, unique location in our vehicles,” said Brett Hinds, Ford Manager, Engine Design. “This single use has made an incredible impact, and we’re continuing to look for ways to expand the use.”
The cover is the first automotive product of its kind manufactured from post-consumer recycled nylon. To repurpose nylon, Wellman grinds used nylon carpeting into fiber and recaptures the material through a patented, proprietary process. The resulting product is a high-quality nylon resin, which Dana then uses to mold into cylinder head covers through its injection-molding process.
Over the past several years Ford has concentrated on increasing the use of nonmetal recycled and bio-based materials, including soy foam seat cushions, recycled resins for underbody systems, recycled yarns on seat covers and natural-fiber plastic for interior components.
And perhaps the one most likely to work as a conversation-starter at the next party you attend, recycled blue jeans for sound-dampening material.
Ford recently introduced SYNC® 3, a new communications and entertainment system that is faster, more intuitive and easier to use with enhanced response to driver commands.
SYNC 3’s more conversational voice recognition technology, a more smartphone-like touch screen and easy-to-read graphics will help millions of drivers connect with their lives and control their smartphone while on the road.
The next-generation system builds on the capability of SYNC technology already in more than 10 million SYNC-equipped vehicles on the road globally. SYNC 3 begins arriving on new vehicles next year.
Ford took a customer-centric approach in developing SYNC 3, drawing on 22,000 customer comments and suggestions, plus insights gleaned from research clinics, market surveys and tech industry benchmarking.
Although SYNC 3 is optimized for hands-free use, an all-new touch screen delivers an experience similar to a smartphone or tablet.
Quicker response to touch as well as voice commands and smartphone-like gestures including pinch-to-zoom and swipe are central to SYNC 3, along with crisp, modern graphics.
A bright background and large buttons with high-contrast fonts for daytime use help reduce screen washout in the sun. At night, the display automatically switches to a dark background to help reduce eye fatigue and minimize reflections on the windows.
SYNC 3 reduces on-screen complexity and prioritizes the control options customers use most.
The home screen features three zone choices – Navigation, Audio and Phone. Tile-like icons dominate the screen, with a quick access function tray along the bottom making for a more straight-forward user experience.
Phone contacts are searchable via a simple swipe of the finger to scroll through the alphabet. With “One Box Search,” SYNC 3 users can look up points of interest or enter addresses in much the same way they use an Internet search engine.
Easy-to-use voice recognition
Ford SYNC – the industry’s first system to widely and most affordably offer voice-activated technology to control smartphones – becomes more capable with the next-generation system by minimizing the number of steps needed to carry out a command.
With SYNC 3, simply saying “play <song, artist, album or genre>” prompts the system to play the desired song, artist, playlist or album; there is no need to identify the desired category. To switch back to a radio station, the user just says the name of the SiriusXM station or terrestrial radio station number.
Voice search results are enhanced by a better understanding of how consumers refer to businesses and points of interest. Drivers don’t have to know an exact name. They can search for “Detroit Airport” rather than using the official name “Detroit Metropolitan Airport.” With addresses, they can say, “Eleven Twenty-Five Main Street” instead of “One One Two Five Main Street.”
When connected to an Apple iPhone, SYNC 3 offers seamless integration of Siri Eyes-Free control. Drivers can seek Siri’s help by holding down SYNC’s “Push to Talk” steering wheel button – much as they would hold down the button on an iPhone to initiate a Siri session.
Ford was first to bring voice control to in-vehicle apps with AppLink™, and the experience is further improved with SYNC 3.
AppLink allows customers to connect their smartphone to their vehicle and control their compatible apps using voice commands or buttons on the vehicle display screen. AppLink now automatically discovers smartphone apps including Spotify, Pandora, Stitcher, NPR One, SiriusXM Radio and iHeartRadio Auto, and displays their unique graphics and branding. Music and news apps are automatically displayed along with other media sources, just like AM/FM or SiriusXM.
SYNC 3, like earlier generations of the technology, provides subscription-free emergency service 911 Assist®.
The customer’s Bluetooth-connected phone is used to dial 911 in the event of a significant accident, alerting first-responders with the vehicle’s location. With SYNC 3, the car relays additional information, including if airbags were deployed, the type of crash (front, side, rear or rollover) and the number of safety belts detected in use, in order to help emergency call takers dispatch the appropriate resources to the scene.
Heading back to the car lugging arms full of shopping bags, we’ve probably all wished that the rear hatch could just pop open on its own. That hope has become reality for new Ford Escape and C-MAX owners, although the mechanism is more science than sorcery. The available foot-activated liftgate automatically rises when drivers kick below their cars’ rear bumper. My Ford spoke with Ford engineer Vince Mahé about the process of integrating this technology into the automotive world.
MY FORD: LET’S START WITH THE SCIENCE. HOW DOES THE LIFTGATE WORK?
Vince Mahé: It consists of two sensors and a control module. The two sensors measure the existence of a foot and a shin. They activate as soon as you get within a meter of the car. Once the sensor for the foot connects with a foot and a shin, along with the presence of the key fob, it sends a signal to the power liftgate.
MF: NEW TECHNOLOGY OFTEN MEANS EXTENSIVE TESTING. WHAT WAS YOUR TEAM’S STRATEGY?
VM: We tried to come up with what failures we could prevent, such as a trailer being towed or a dog wagging its tail under the car. How can it be inadvertently activated? And what we came up with on paper is turning out to be pretty good in the real world.
MF: YOU’VE WORKED ON MULTIPLE VEHICLE LAUNCHES AND INTEGRATION PROJECTS AT FORD. WHAT STOOD OUT THIS TIME?
VM: There really was no prior art. Usually when you work in this industry, there’s always someone who’s developed the concept before, so you go through this benchmarking exercise. This one, nobody has done before.
MF: DO YOU HAVE ANY REAL-WORLD LIFTGATE SUCCESS STORIES?
VM: I participated in a Facebook LiveChat where a customer came out and said that he was disabled—and that this technology definitely helped him out. Just when you think that you’ve got your customer base nailed down, you get a surprise. There’s someone you didn’t think would benefit from it, and it is now making his or her life better.
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We have done all this to ensure we take care of our customers long after their initial purchase.
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