Tag: Ford

By on April 18, 2019

The Rare Rides series has broached the subject of De Tomaso a few times before. The luxurious Longchamp coupe was accompanied by the Qvale-branded Mangusta, and the tangentially related Chrysler TC.

But today’s De Tomaso takes the cake for rarity over any of those previous Rare Rides. It’s a Guarà Barchetta, from 1995.

(Read More…)

By on April 18, 2019

Image: Ford

“Ford’s future is not about giving up the car,” company CEO Jim Hackett said in November 2017, not long before taking an axe to all Ford passenger car models, save the Mustang.

“We want to give them what they’re telling us they really want. We’re simply reinventing the American car,” Hackett continued in May of 2018, adding, “We don’t want anyone to think we’re leaving anything. We’re just moving to a modern version. This is an exciting new generation of vehicles coming from Ford.”

A year on from that last statement, the Ford Focus and Taurus are dead, the Fiesta bites the dust next month, and the Fusion lives on borrowed time. Also dead is the promise that the mildly lifted, faux-crossover Focus Active would make its way here from overseas. What’s left? A new product promise, and a long wait. (Read More…)

By on April 18, 2019

Yep, they still sell this thing. Betcha forgot all about it.

Or perhaps not. The “styled with a t-square” profile of the Flex has always appealed to the funkier side of the crossover/SUV customer base and, if my eight years of toiling for this publication has taught me anything, the B&B is nothing if not funky. Let’s see what this coffin-shaped crossover offers in base form.

(Read More…)

By on April 15, 2019

Image: Ford

Wishing your Ford Mustang EcoBoost boasted a little more top end? Get ready to trade it in. In the lead-up to the New York Auto Show, Ford has unveiled a new pony car that draws inspiration — and power — from a fondly remembered hot hatch.

Buyers of the 2020 Mustang 2.3L High Performance Package get more than a nifty badge to announce their status; they also gain 20 horsepower and bits borrowed from the Mustang GT Performance Package. Buyers of 88-horsepower, Fox-bodied four-cylinders could only dream of this stuff. (Read More…)

By on April 11, 2019

To our collective horror, Ford decided not to sell the new Fiesta ST in North America. Instead, the automaker chose to cull its passenger car lineup during a period of declining demand and profitability in order to focus on higher-margin trucks, crossovers, and SUVs. No one in this office is particularly excited about the idea, but most of us could rationalize our hurt by trying to see things from Ford’s perspective and focusing on the bottom line. However, Ford is just rubbing salt into our wound at this point.

While the 2019 Ford Fiesta ST has abandoned its turbocharged 1.6-liter four-banger for a more Euro-friendly 1.5-liter triple boasting the same 197 horsepower and more torque, the United Kingdom also receives a limited-run Performance Edition that would have made a nifty little runabout/track day hooligan. Sure, it probably wouldn’t have been a hit here. But we would at least like to have the opportunity not to buy it.  (Read More…)

By on April 10, 2019

ford logo

Ford Motor Company veteran Marcy Klevorn is set to retire come October, leaving her position as head of mobility in need of filling. No need for new blood in Ford’s C-suite, however, as there’s apparently room on Jim Farley’s plate.

Farley, Ford’s head of global markets, will add a new hat to his wardrobe even before Klevorn, 59, leaves the Glass House. Klevorn, whose tenure at Ford spans 36 years, will move to a (brief) new role after Farley dons the title of president of businesses, technology and strategy. There’s new responsibilities and a new title for global operations head Joe Hinrichs, too. (Read More…)

By on April 8, 2019

1978 Ford Mustang Stallion in Denver wrecking yard, LH front view - ©2019 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsAfter the first-generation Mustang went from frisky lightweight to bloated monstrosity, Ford transferred the name over to an economy car based on the Pinto. This proved to be a wise move, in light of certain geopolitical events that took place right around the time the first Mustang IIs began rolling into showrooms, but most of the old Mustang magic was lost during the Pinto-ization process.

Ford created a bunch of flashy trim packages for the car, and I spotted one of the more unusual ones in a Denver self-serve yard a couple of weeks back: the Stallion. (Read More…)

By on April 4, 2019

2019 RAM 1500 front quarter

There’s a chill in the auto industry that wasn’t present a year ago. Sales are down compared to this time last year, with only a select few automakers posting year-to-date gains. Among members of the Detroit Three, volume loss is the order of the day.

Over the first three months of 2019, Ford sales sank 1.6 percent, General Motors sales declined 7 percent, and Fiat Chrysler volume dropped 3 percent. While the long-predicted slowdown is upon us, rivalry in the lucrative full-size pickup segment has never been hotter — and the battle for second place among the top three truck nameplates shows no signs of ending. (Read More…)

By on April 3, 2019

Image: Ford

Amsterdam, home to green medicinal plants and red lights, was the site of a Ford product extravaganza on Tuesday, with the automaker announcing a number of hybrid or electric models for the highly regulated European market.

A total of sixteen electrified models made their (future) existence known, with most falling under the automaker’s new Ford Hybrid banner. Some, like the Fiesta EcoBoost Hybrid and Focus EcoBoost Hybrid, are products thrifty American greenies can only dream of. There’ll be no more Fiestas or Focuses for you, sorry. Another is one Americans with loftier lifestyles might desire, and one Ford could sell here, but won’t: a plug-in Explorer. (Read More…)

By on April 3, 2019

Image: Ford

We subjected you to yet another mention of Ford’s upcoming electric crossover this morning, but there’s now a new tidbit of information to share about the green machine that’s due out in 2020, likely carrying the Mach-E (or Mach E) name.

While the automaker stated in the past that it wants a 300-mile range for the vehicle, Ford now suggest owners will be able to drive further than that. (Read More…)

By on April 3, 2019

While much of the hype surrounding Ford’s electrified future involves the brand’s upcoming “Mustang inspired” crossover EV, due in 2020, there are other models that stand to gain an (albeit milder) electric boost. The F-150 and Mustang, to name a couple.

Ford’s long-running pony car is expected to gain a hybrid variant sometime in 2020, and a new trademark filing sheds light on what name we might expect to see adorning the Stang’s flanks.  (Read More…)

By on April 2, 2019

2020 Ford Escape

Ford unveiled the all-new 2020 Escape in dramatic fashion by turning the fabulous Henry Ford Museum’s Greenfield Village into “Escapeville.” The automaker seated members of the media on bleachers, but in a moment of trickery, it turned out said bleachers were mobile (insert Jim Hackett “mobility” joke here), and as they moved rearward, the Escape moved out from under sheets (Ed. note — This sentence has been changed to provide clarification. The original wording incorrectly implied that the Escape drove out from under the bleachers). Quite the effort, but it shows how important the Escape is, especially to Ford’s sedan-free future.

Initial press reaction to the Escape’s frontal appearance was, “huh … unexpectedly nice.” Following the moving bleacher introduction was a trip down a fictitious “Main St., USA,” with groups of actors playing out scenes of 2019 Americana, doing things that Americans do. Playing basketball. Unloading suitcases. Dancing, singing, and playing instruments. A man in camo returning home from war, presumably, with a dog that was being fed many treats to comply with his military master’s directions.

As we passed over an intersection, the first car left and three more entered our field of view.  The whole town joined in celebration around the new Escapes as the music ended.

As we sat in the middle of a transformed Greenfield Village, I couldn’t help but wonder … is Ford trying to convey that the new Escape might be to today’s market what the Model T was to America a century ago?

(Read More…)

By on March 29, 2019

Image: Ford

Debuting in North America for the 2013 model year, the third-generation Ford Escape is getting long in the tooth, forced to compete against newer compact crossovers like the Chevrolet Equinox and Honda CR-V. Toyota’s RAV4 is all-new this year, too. And Dodge, well… Dodge still sells the Journey Abe Lincoln drove from rural Illinois to D.C.

Looking to cement its status in this white-hot segment, Ford has a fourth-generation Escape due out later this year. We’ll have full details for you on April 2nd (the media sneak peek was last week), but here’s something to tide you over. (Read More…)

By on March 28, 2019

Image: Ford of Europe

Ford’s troubled Russian joint venture isn’t doing nearly as hot as the Blue Oval automaker would like, so it’s severely paring back its presence in the country.

The memorandum of understanding signed Wednesday kicks off a broad restructuring of the automaker’s business in Russia, with two vehicle assembly plants and an engine plant now slated to close. Ford passenger car assembly will soon be a thing of the past in the Motherland as Ford’s partner, Sollers PJSC, takes a majority stake in the venture. (Read More…)

By on March 28, 2019

2017 Volkswagen Amarok, Image: Volkswagen

The fledgling alliance between Ford and Volkswagen took another step towards jointly-developed products Thursday, with VW signing an initial contract for a Ranger-based replacement for VW’s aging, midsize Amarok.

Commercial vans and pickups were top of mind when the automakers officially partnered up back in January, with electric vehicles and autonomous driving serving as (potential) future collaborations. More news on that front arrived today, too.  (Read More…)

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