The all-new 2013 Ford Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid will offer up to an EPA-estimated 108 MPGe city, making it America’s most fuel-efficient sedan by besting Toyota Prius plug-in hybrid by 5 MPGe
Ford projects 19,000-plus hybrid/electric vehicle sales in the fourth quarter of this year, making it the company’s best quarter for hybrids ever and besting its own previous hybrid vehicle sales record by more than 50 percent; more than half of hybrid sales this year expected to come in this period
Fusion Energi delivers power of choice for leading fuel economy as Ford’s fifth electrified vehicle launching in the last 13 months and the fifth powertrain for the all-new Fusion, recently voted Green Car of the Year by Green Car Journal
Ford is seeing demand for fuel economy across its lineup as the brand ranks No. 1 in fuel economy customer satisfaction by J.D. Power and now beats Toyota for leading efficiency in every segment where both compete
DEARBORN, Mich., Dec. 28, 2012 – The 2013 Ford Fusion – recently voted Green Car of the Year – just got greener as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency certified the new Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid at up to 108 MPGe, making it America’s most fuel-efficient sedan.
Fusion Energi is the Ford brand’s fifth electrified vehicle to launch in the past year and is expected to accelerate the company’s record hybrid sales pace, including its highest monthly hybrid sales month ever in November. Ford is seeing demand for fuel economy across its lineup as the brand ranks No. 1 in fuel economy customer satisfaction by J.D. Power and now beats Toyota for leading efficiency in every segment where both compete.
The EPA also certified Fusion Energi to deliver up to 92 MPGe highway and a combined 100 MPGe – figures that could potentially help save customers an estimated $6,850 in fuel costs compared with an average new car over the course of five years.
“The Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid is the exclamation point for Ford’s transformed lineup of fuel-efficiency leaders that now beats Toyota across the board,” said Raj Nair, group vice president, Global Product Development.
Adding to Fusion Energi’s value – and the myriad ways it beats Toyota Prius plug-in – are its innovative technologies that are designed to help win over both novice and pro hybrid owners.
SmartGauge® with EcoGuide, for example, provides in-vehicle customizable displays, including instantaneous fuel economy readings and coaching functions to help drivers understand and optimize their fuel efficiency.
SYNC® with MyFord Touch® offers multiple ways – including voice commands – for customers to manage and control their phone, available navigation, entertainment and climate functions. Plug-in hybrids and all-electric models have additional options for monitoring information like battery state of charge.
EV+ combines the built-in GPS of Ford SYNC with proprietary software algorithms developed by Ford engineers to learn frequent destinations. As a result, vehicles give drivers more drive time in electric-only mode.
Such technologies have helped get sales for Ford’s electrified vehicle lineup up and running. With more than 19,000 hybrid vehicle sales projected, the automaker expects total fourth-quarter hybrid sales to set an all-time record for a three-month period, with more than half of hybrid sales this year expected to come in the fourth quarter.
In fact, C-MAX became the fastest-selling hybrid ever at launch after 8,030 units were sold in October and November, the first two months C-MAX was on the market. The pace beat Toyota Camry Hybrid’s 7,300 sales in its first two full months of availability in May and June 2006.
“The response to C-MAX really shows the amount of pent-up demand from a specific market for C-segment hybrids,” says C.J. O’Donnell, marketing manager, Ford Electrified Vehicles. “Fusion Energi has a different audience in the midsize sedan market, but delivers many of the characteristics and technologies that make C-MAX Energi so great, which is why we’re anticipating a similar positive response.”
C-MAX is geared toward those most concerned with fuel economy, but designed so that owners aren’t forced to sacrifice comfort and convenience.
Fusion is designed with the driver’s sense of style in mind, delivering a midsize sedan that offers functional design elements that enhance its sleek exterior and promote fuel economy. A video explaining the origin of Fusion Energi can be found here.
With Fusion Energi and Fusion Hybrid, the all-new Fusion lineup brings the widest range of powertrain options to the U.S. midsize segment. Fusion also is available in gas-powered versions with a choice between a pair of fuel-efficient EcoBoost® engines and a normally aspirated four-cylinder engine.
The addition of Fusion Energi gives customers yet another Ford option when shopping for an electrified vehicle – already available are Focus Electric, Fusion Hybrid, C-MAX Hybrid and C-MAX Energi.
Three of the vehicles – Focus Electric, C-MAX Energi and now Fusion Energi – have received EPA ratings of 100 MPGe or more. Focus Electric delivers EPA-estimated ratings of 110 MPGe city, 99 MPGe highway and 105 MPGe combined, making it America’s most fuel-efficient five-passenger car. C-MAX Energi has an EPA-estimated rating of 108 MPGe city, 92 MPGe highway and 100 MPGe combined.
Focus Electric went on sale in late 2011, followed by C-MAX Hybrid and C-MAX Energi – the two vehicles that make up Ford’s first hybrid-only line in North America – this past autumn.
Many of the innovative technologies of Fusion Energi are shared across Ford’s electrified vehicle lineup and draw from the automaker’s portfolio of about 500 patents related specifically to hybrid technology:
MyFord® Mobile: Enables access via smartphone or Web-based interface to perform key tasks, such as monitoring a vehicle’s state of charge and current range or locating charge stations and planning routes to find them
Eco cruise: Saves vehicle energy by relaxing acceleration compared to standard cruise control
EV mode button: Conveniently mounted on the console to the right of the shifter – allows a driver to switch vehicle operation between three modes: all-electric, normal hybrid operation and conserve battery power for later use
Regenerative braking is capable of capturing and reusing more than 90 percent of the braking energy normally lost during the braking process
Hybrid transmission, designed by Ford engineers in-house, is capable of operating at high speeds and in a smooth, fuel-efficient manner at the same time
Advanced lithium-ion batteries used in Ford’s electrified vehicle lineup – covered by an eight-year/100,000-mile component limited warranty – are smaller and lighter than nickel-metal-hybrid batteries used in previous-generation hybrids
Charge port with LED light ring, conveniently located on the driver’s side and near the front of the car, it features a light ring that illuminates to indicate charge status
About 120 million pounds of damaged vehicle parts have been processed through the Ford Core Recovery Program since its inception; program celebrates 10 years in 2013
Reusing parts as often as possible helps control costs and quality while conserving valuable resources and giving new life to vehicle components otherwise likely destined for a junkyard or landfill
In the last two years, bumpers and headlights were added to the list of parts recycled or remanufactured through the program; about 26,000 headlight units were collected in the last year alone
DEARBORN, Mich., Dec. 27, 2012 – Ford’s recycling and remanufacturing program has kept 120 million pounds of damaged vehicle parts from landfills since 2003, effectively ending the days when the crack of a headlamp or crunch of a bumper would render useless such components.
The Core Recovery Program oversees collection, remanufacturing and recycling of damaged parts – everything from small sensors and fuel injectors to large engine parts – from Ford vehicles that have been repaired through the company’s dealer network.
Several issues necessitated the program – from more complex and expensive parts in cars and trucks to a need to get more control over the sale of aftermarket components to a need to recycle more.
In the last nine years, about 120 million pounds have been collected and the list of parts recycled or remanufactured continues growing. In the last two years, bumpers and headlights were added to the list. In the short time since, about 62,000 bumpers have been collected while about 26,000 headlights have been recycled.
“Most parts that come back to us through the program still have a lot of life left,” says Kim Goering, manager of Ford’s remanufacturing and recycling programs. “That makes a strong business case to do whatever we can to extend the life of these components. Even more important, however, is that Ford strongly believes it’s just the right thing to do from an environmental perspective.”
Ford has remanufactured parts for decades, but it formed the Core Recovery Program in 2003. The impetus was that there were too many different collection methods being used in various parts of the company, making it too hard and confusing for all the parties involved – from the dealers to those managing Ford’s supply chain.
General recycling awareness has increased, too. The U.S. EPA reports that in 2010 recycling helped keep 85 million tons of material from being disposed of in landfills – up from 15 million tons in 1980.
Other factors led to the creation of the Core Recovery Program: Vehicle components, for example, have become increasingly complex and expensive, making it more important than ever to recycle and reuse parts whenever possible.
Take the headlight portion of the program: As recently as 15 years ago, headlights were pretty basic and utilitarian – consisting mostly of a bulb, a glass lens and a reflector.
Now, typical headlight assemblies are almost two feet wide and have become a major part of the vehicle, both in terms of design and function – consisting of not just a few parts, but expensive plastics, advanced bulb technology, additional wiring harnesses and more.
The headlight portion of the program started in November 2011. In its first year alone, about 26,000 units were reclaimed and every single part of the headlamp is recycled.
In fact, more than 85 percent of each Ford vehicle today is recyclable, with more and more parts being kept from landfills.
Bumpers, for example, are now collected and sent to a third party where they are processed into pellets that can then be used to make brand-new products. Since 2010, about 62,000 bumpers have been recycled through the program.
“These bumpers are typically between five and six feet long and can yield as much as 20 pounds of material after they have been processed,” said Goering. “That adds up fast and makes it pretty easy to see how much of an impact the program makes – and that’s with just one category.”
Yet another benefit of the Core Recovery Program is that it helps keep damaged parts from being resold in the aftermarket, says Mark Trombetta, manager of the Ford Regional Core Recovery Center Network. For example, Ford doesn’t want to encourage people to try and somehow fix the new complicated headlights of today’s vehicles.
“Unauthorized selling of Ford parts in the aftermarket can be a problem because Ford has no way to ensure the level of quality,” he says. “Then you have a situation where a part being utilized doesn’t truly reflect Ford’s high standards of quality, but still has the Blue Oval on it.”
How it’s done
Dealers pay a core charge on each new part bought from Ford to replace a damaged one. When the original damaged part is returned to Ford, the dealer gets the money from the core charge back – operating exactly like bottle return systems do in some parts of the United States.
To collect the damaged and broken parts from dealers, Ford works with distributors strategically located around the country, such as RMP Powertrain Solutions of Brownstown Township, Mich. The 35,000-square-foot center serves as the central collection point for Ford dealers in Southeast Michigan, Ohio and Indiana.
Ford uses a proprietary system involving bar codes and scanners to keep track of every single part collected. Once collected, each part is evaluated for either recycling or remanufacturing potential.
Parts recycled are sent to third-party processors and the raw material is resold.
When parts are remanufactured, they are cleaned, machined and tested to meet Ford quality standards. Like the raw material that comes from recycling, the parts that are remanufactured can then be sold or used in new applications. In the rare instances when recycling or remanufacturing is not an option, Ford ensures proper disposal.
Goering says that whether parts are recycled or remanufactured, the Core Recovery Program has been profitable for Ford – and that it could grow even more.
“As the vehicle population grows, so does our business,” she says. “We are always considering the business case for different products, which is quite a task when you think about the sheer quantity and complexity of the parts going into today’s vehicles.”
RMP’s Rick Rutenbar, warehouse manager, says he hopes to be part of the program’s continued evolution.
“We have definitely seen an increase in the amount of parts we are picking up,” he says. “We’ve had to hire additional workers and add more hours to adjust to the rapid growth in the number of parts we are picking up.”
Ford is spending more than $773 million on new equipment and capacity expansions across six manufacturing facilities in southeast Michigan as it delivers on a commitment to invest $6.2 billion in U.S. plants by 2015.
The investments in Michigan will create 2,350 new hourly jobs and allow the company to retain an additional 3,240 hourly jobs.
Over the next six months, Ford will upgrade stamping operations at Michigan Assembly Plant and Dearborn Stamping Plant, as well as finalize work at Flat Rock Assembly Plant to produce the new Fusion
DEARBORN, Mich., Dec. 27, 2012 – Ford Motor Company is spending more than $773 million on new equipment and capacity expansions across six manufacturing facilities in southeast Michigan as it delivers on a commitment to invest $6.2 billion in U.S. plants by 2015.
The investments in Michigan will create 2,350 new hourly jobs and allow the company to retain an additional 3,240 hourly jobs. The 2,350 new positions are part of the 12,000 hourly jobs that Ford is adding across the U.S. by 2015.
“Even as we wrap up an incredibly busy year of capacity expansions and product launches, we are continuing to look to the future,” said Jim Tetreault, Ford vice president of North America Manufacturing. “These investments, many of which are already under way, will ensure our southeast Michigan manufacturing facilities can support our aggressive growth plans.”
Expansion work at several plants started earlier this year to increase Ford’s capacity to provide transmissions and axles to support growing demand for fuel efficient vehicles and F-Series pickup trucks.
In addition, over the next six months Ford will bring a new stamping press on line at Michigan Assembly Plant; install equipment for four new stamping presses at Dearborn Stamping Plant; and finish expansion work at Flat Rock Assembly Plant to produce the new Fusion next year.
Specifically, Ford is making investments at the following locations:
Michigan Assembly Plant - $59.4 million for stamping press line expansion
Dearborn Stamping Plant -$305 million for plant modernization, new press lines, scrap conveyor system and other machinery and equipment
Flat Rock Assembly - $161 million for machinery and equipment to assemble the new Ford Fusion and as an additional production facility
Sterling Axle Plant - $86 million for machinery and equipment investment to meet axle demand increase and future model changes
Van Dyke Transmission - $87.7 million for machinery and equipment investment to meet capacity expansions for 6F35 and 6F50 transmissions
Livonia Transmission - $74.7 million for machinery and equipment investment for transmission expansion and test equipment
3D rapid prototyping enables Ford engineers to create workable parts right at their desks digitally – increasing global efficiency, greatly reducing development time and time to market, and saving cost
Ford is a leader in 3D printing, investing in efforts not only to enable engineers to create an entrepreneurial spirit through experimenting at their workstations, but also investing in one of the newest forms of 3D printing with sand to help develop production-representative parts
Manufacturing and desktop rapid prototyping converge as each Ford EcoBoost® engine – now available in the upcoming Transit Van, all-new Fusion, 2014 Fiesta and full-size F-150 pickup – utilizes the technology to develop parts
DEARBORN, Mich., Dec. 26, 2012 – In Ford’s Silicon Valley Lab, Dave Evans creates a custom vehicle gauge and emails the 3D design to Zac Nelson in Dearborn. Nelson uses the MakerBot® Thing-O-Matic™at his workstation and prints up a physical prototype. The future of research and development is happening right here and now at the desks of these Ford engineers.
Click here to see Nelson, a Ford engineer in Research and Innovation, explain and use the MakerBot Thing-O-Matic at his workstation.
Just like laser printers today, expect 3D printers to be commonplace tomorrow. Engineers throughout the industry will have the ability to visualize a design on a computer screen and have the physical prototype show up at a colleague’s desk on the other side of the country in minutes. With this capability, the most qualified experts in each domain can make changes that feed into a tangible model. They can then share a 3D CAD design with the improvements.
“We’ve been shifting from the tangible world to the computer world, and the reality is that a hybrid model works best,” says K. Venkatesh Prasad, senior technical leader, Open Innovation, and a member of Ford’s Technology Advisory Board, Research and Innovation. “There is nothing like having a tangible prototype, but it has always been time consuming and expensive to create.
“Now, at the press of a button, you can have the product or component at your fingertips,” he adds. “With a model in one hand, you can then input your changes back into the computer model. The best decisions are made from the highest quality engineer and at the best pace.”
Currently thought of as a do-it-yourself tool for independent entrepreneurs and hobbyists, MakerBot enables users to design and produce products in various plastic materials. Ford is using this low-cost 3D printing in similar ways to other technology companies, mainly for small developments like shift knobs, gauges and display modules.
“We encourage our engineers to have the same entrepreneurial and creative spirit that started this movement,” says Prasad. “When we first got the machine, we made a scaled-down replica Model T and engineers have even made superheroes. We like that people are having fun with it and experimenting for it is that type of creativity that will lead to great uses and discoveries.”
Where we are now
Ford is using 3D printing in the manufacturing world, bridging the gap between abstract and practical.
Large industrial rapid prototyping machines have made significant gains in the manufacturing world, and Ford is fully invested in the latest commercial 3D printing innovations.
Recently, many of the components for the 3.5-liter EcoBoost® engine in the all-new Transit Van were developed with the aid of 3D rapid manufacturing. Cast aluminum oil filtration adaptors, exhaust manifolds, differential carrier, brake rotors, oil pan, differential case casting and even rear axles were prototyped with the technology, specifically utilizing selective laser sintering, stereolithography and 3D sand casting.
Additionally, Ford is a leader in a new variation on this technology: 3D printing with sand allows for the creation of casting patterns and cores with multiple printers in-house.
The technology enables engineers to quickly create a series of evolving testable pieces with slight variations to develop the absolute best vehicle for mass production. This results in improved efficiency and time to market, reduced time spent waiting on iterations and increased cost savings.
Examples of 3D sand printing include:
C-MAX, Fusion Hybrid: Rotor supports, transmission cases, damper housings and end covers for the new HF35 hybrid transmission built at Van Dyke Transmission Plant in suburban Detroit
Escape: EcoBoost four-cylinder engines in the 2013 Escape built at Louisville Assembly Plant
Explorer: Brake rotors for the 2011 Explorer built in Chicago. The rotors were modified late in development to address a brake noise issue discovered in durability testing
F-150: Exhaust manifolds for the 3.5-liter EcoBoost built in Cleveland and used in F-150
Where this could lead
In the not-so-distant future, if a part breaks on your refrigerator, you may be able to scan the barcode or a model number, take the information to an in-home rapid manufacturing machine, and actually print up a useable replacement piece.
“Many have referenced this technology as ushering in a third industrial revolution,” says Harold Sears, Ford additive manufacturing technical specialist. “While that is yet to be determined, we do know manufacturing is continuing to go digital, the speed of these technologies is increasing, and the variety of materials is expanding. This all leads us to believe the potential of micro-manufacturing presents great opportunity for the manufacturing industry overall.”
Ford vehicles including the all-new 2013 Fusion are increasingly equipped with sensors that assist drivers with increased awareness
Sensor fusion, machine learning, and “big data” among the predictions for the next wave of Ford research and development
DEARBORN, Mich., Dec. 21, 2012 – State-of-the-art sensing, computing and communications systems are not only quickly changing consumer expectations in people’s everyday lives, but are driving innovation in the automotive industry at an incredible pace in preparation for the future.
“Ford was founded on the innovative spirit of Henry Ford, and the opportunity today to reinvent the driving experience excites us just as it probably would have him,” said Paul Mascarenas, vice president and chief technical officer of Ford. “Technology is enabling Ford to bring a new level of awareness and intelligence that will dramatically enhance our customers’ time behind the wheel.”
As CTO, Mascarenas has been leading the team researching and developing new technologies for Ford vehicles, particularly in the area of driver assistance and mobile device connectivity.
“The new Fusion sedan demonstrates how we’re making the car smarter using attainable and affordable technology and thus helping create a better driver,” continues Mascarenas. “Fusion features an unprecedented level of sensors for its driver assist technologies, machine learning techniques to deliver more electric-only driving on the hybrids, and innovative graphical interfaces to help coach drivers to be as fuel efficient as possible.”
With more than 145 actuators, 4716 signals, and 74 sensors including radar, sonar, cameras, accelerometers, temperature and even rain sensors, the 2013 Fusion can monitor the perimeter around the car and see into places that are not readily visible from the driver’s seat. These sensors produce more than 25 gigabytes of data per hour which is analyzed by more than 70 on-board computers. The actuators combined with signal information from the driver assist sensors can alert the driver to potential dangers, and actively assist with parking and lane keeping.
“So far we’ve just scratched the surface of what is possible,” said Mascarenas. “In the Fusion, we have sensors and actuators that act independently as part of the assist features. The next phase, currently in research, involves sensor fusion, where engineers learn how to more comprehensively characterize the environment by blending multiple signals, and add externally available information through cloud connectivity.”
According to Mascarenas’ predictions, top areas for car technology innovation in the coming years will include:
“Big data” analysis and intelligent decision making: Ford is researching the use of real-time sensor data – radar and camera-based – that can help evaluate external factors affecting driver attention, such as traffic congestion, and thus limit potential distractions such as an incoming phone call
Upgradeable, customizable hardware: Ford’s OpenXC research platform looks at the potential for open-source, community-driven innovation of plug-and-play hardware modules that provide infinite opportunities for rapid customization
Seamless integration across cloud ecosystems: The success of Ford SYNC® has been linked to its open, agnostic platform strategy that has allowed for adoption and compatibility with the burgeoning mobile ecosystem; the next step is to do the same for the consumer shift toward cloud-based services
Advanced machine learning: The new Fusion and C-MAX Energi plug-in hybrids utilize EV+, a feature that learns the typical locations of charging, such as home and office, and then automatically maximizes electric-only driving mode when nearing those locations
Biometrics: Ford is researching biometric sensors, such as those embedded in a car seat, to measure stress levels for a more personalized response from driver assist technologies, because skill levels – and thus stress – can vary in certain situations
Rapid data authentication: Ford sees significant potential in vehicle-to-vehicle communications and is actively researching the technology globally, including advanced Wi-Fi® with rapid authentication capability so that cars can exchange information quickly and securely, helping drivers avoid potential collisions
“All of these areas of research are well within our reach,” concludes Mascarenas. “The key to readiness and implementation in Ford vehicles is ensuring the customer experience of these technology features trumps the technology itself.”
The all-new 2013 Ford Fusion achieved an Acceptable Rating in the challenging new small overlap front crash test and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) recently named the all-new 2013 Ford Fusion a Top Safety Pick+, the highest recommendation the organization has for vehicle crash safety
The all-new Fusion features the Personal Safety System, new safety belt technologies and a total of eight airbags, which are designed to protect the vehicle occupants. The Fusion has redesigned seat-mounted side airbags that deploy lower in the pelvis area and incorporate new venting technology to further enhance side impact protection
DEARBORN, Mich., Dec. 20, 2012 – The all-new Ford Fusion earned the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) highest rating, a Top Safety Pick+, receiving an Acceptable rating in the new small overlap front crash test. The new 2013 Ford Fusion was already rated as a Top Safety Pick winner. This new rating, Top Safety Pick+, applies to all vehicles produced after mid-December 2012.
To earn the “+” distinction, Top Safety Pick Plus winners must earn good ratings for occupant protection in at least 4 of 5 IIHS evaluations, with no less than acceptable in any test. IIHS rates vehicles good, acceptable, marginal or poor based on performance in a moderate overlap frontal crash, small overlap frontal crash, side impact and rollover, plus evaluations of seat/head restraints for protection against neck injuries in rear impacts.
“Ford is thrilled to earn this new, highest safety distinction from IIHS,” said Steve Kenner, global director of the Automotive Safety Office. “The Fusion is a leading example of exemplary vehicles being designed and produced by Ford to the highest standards of safety.”
Protection in case of crash
The all-new Fusion features the Personal Safety System with new safety belt technologies and redesigned front and side airbags.
The Personal Safety System is a network of components that work together to tailor the deployment of the front airbags during frontal collisions. The restraint control module (RCM) translates information collected by the front crash sensors, front outboard safety belt buckle switches, driver-seat track position and passenger seat weight sensor. Using this information, the RCM activates the safety belt pretensioners and determines how the dual-stage front airbags will deploy. This tailored deployment is designed to help better protect an occupant by adapting its release to the size and position of the front seat occupants.
The redesigned seat-mounted side airbags deploy lower in the pelvis area and incorporate new venting technology. The tunnel vent on the seat mounted side airbag is lined up with the shoulder area of the occupant. On larger passengers, the shoulder engages the vent and keeps it from venting so the gas stays inside the airbag. On smaller passengers, the effect is just the opposite: Because the occupant’s shoulder is below the vent, the gas vents out of the airbag.
The driver’s airbag uses a reconfigured curve-shaped tether system that pulls in the lower section to create a pocket that is designed to help lessen the impact of the airbag on the driver’s chest and ribs in frontal crashes. Deploying at the same time is a driver’s knee airbag.
Top fuel economy, driver assist technology
The Fusion boasts leading fuel economy and numerous technologies that help enhance the driving experience, reduce stress and assist in avoiding potentially harmful scenarios.
Fusion brings the broadest selection of fuel-efficient powertrains in the midsize car segment. Consumers have the choice of a pair of EcoBoostfour-cylinder engines, a normally aspirated four-cylinder engine, an automatic start stop system to shut off the engine at stationary idle, front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive applications, and a choice between automatic and manually shifted six-speed transmissions. The Fusion also offers hybrid and plug-in hybrid alternatives, which offer 47 mpg on the highway and in the city (hybrid) and 100 mpgE, a mile per gallon equivalency metric for electrified vehicles.
Maneuvering parking lots and traveling open roadways become even safer and less stressful with Fusion’s available sensor-based BLIS® (Blind Spot Information System) with cross-traffic alert. BLIS sounds an alert when a vehicle is detected entering a blind spot. Cross-traffic alert warns if traffic is detected approaching from the sides, such as when Fusion is leaving a parking space in reverse.
Parallel parking the Fusion is also virtually stress-free with the available active park assist. With the press of a button, the system detects an available parallel parking space and automatically steers the vehicle into the space. Drivers remain in control of gear selection, acceleration and braking.
Other driver assist technologies that are offered on the Fusion include:
Santa Claus joins vehicle buyers who rate fuel economy their No. 1 purchase reason by selecting the all-new 2014 Ford Transit Connect Wagon for his next sleigh
Powered by EcoBoost® with a projected 30 mpg-plus, the Transit Connect Wagon sleigh will offer the industry’s leading presents per gallon (ppg) cargo rating
Ford today revealed the new sleigh concept, designed to maximize Claus’s fuel efficiency when he travels millions of miles around the globe delivering presents
Claus’s future upgrade to a Transit Connect Wagon sleigh comes as a record number of children earn spots on the “nice” list, increasing the payload weight of his bag of presents beyond the normal tow rating of his nine-reindeer team
DEARBORN, Mich., Dec. 21, 2012 – Ford is helping Santa Claus save future Christmases with an all-new 2014 Transit Connect Wagon sleigh. Due to larger-than-ever numbers of children on his “nice” list, Claus needed a new sleigh with maximum fuel economy and cargo space to efficiently deliver all his presents around the world.
Ford designed a concept sleigh for Claus based on its Transit Connect Wagon, powered by EcoBoost®, that offers 30 mpg-plus and an industry-leading presents per gallon (ppg) cargo rating. As an added benefit, the EcoBoost engine – which is finely tuned for high-speed performance – would offer speeds much faster than Claus ever traveled in his former 36-hoofpowered sleigh.
Claus says changing his mode of transportation will not compromise his ability to remain true to his mission.
“My goal is and always has been giving presents to good girls and boys, and a new sleigh will make that process more effective,” he says. “Let’s face it, every year there are more children who earn presents. Things are simply getting out of control, and my old sleigh just isn’t going to be able to hack it much longer. With the new sleigh, I will be able to travel faster and carry more toys.”
Ford engineers developed the Transit Connect Wagon sleigh concept weeks after hearing of Santa’s dilemma during cold-weather testing in the North Pole.
“This is a winning situation for all,” says Darren Goddard, chief engineer for Ford Transit Connect Wagon. “The increased efficiency means added time for Santa to enjoy milk and cookies at stops. His new ride will offer 100 cubic feet of cargo space and versatility to haul up to 2,000 pounds, which Santa will need.”
Reindeer spokesperson Dasher says the nine reindeer look forward to some time off. Every year, the flying animals travel 124,421,726 miles and they’d like some time to rest, he says, explaining there are still splinters embedded in his hoofs from a particular wooden roof in southern Indiana.
“You really can’t beat this new sleigh,” says Goddard. “It offers outstanding fuel economy without sacrificing power. It even offers an electric windshield defroster, making short work of icy windshields in wintry conditions. So, if there’s a foggy Christmas Eve, we won’t need a red-nosed reindeer to guide Santa around the world.”
Other reasons Claus chose a sleigh based on the all-new 2014 Transit Connect Wagon:
Anticipated to be the gas mileage leader among seven-passenger vehicles, Transit Connect Wagon is projected to deliver at least 5 mpg better fuel economy on the highway and 2 mpg better in the city than a Toyota Sienna minivan
SYNC® with MyFord Touch® offers a touch screen display with navigation so Claus can easily find all the good children, even in more remote areas
The child observation mirror would allow him to keep a close eye on his gifts in the second and third row
From its 60/40 three-passenger second-row bench seat through fold-flat second- and third-row seating with third-row independent fore-and-aft sliding capability, Transit Connect Wagon quickly adapts to accommodate multiple combinations of elves and presents
MyKey® programmable ignition key restricts maximum speed should a mischievous elf get behind the wheel while Claus is down a chimney leaving gifts
With eight cupholders, Claus and his elves would have plenty of space to take along a few glasses of milk as they continue through their busy night
Rain-sensing wipers would keep Claus on the move as there’s always a chance he’ll encounter nasty weather
“As always, we are busy making toys and checking long lists,” says Claus. “That said, Merry Christmas to all!”