Monday, March 31, 2014

Introducing the Brand New 2015 Ford Super Duty

The brand-new 2015 Ford Super Duty has more horsepower, more torque, more towing, all best-in-class. It also has better braking and a bigger turbo.

*When properly equipped. Class is Full-Size Pickups over 8,500 lbs. GVWR.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Ford Invests $500 Million in Ohio Engine Plant, Creates 300 Jobs to Build All-New 2.7-Liter EcoBoost for 2015 F-150

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  • Ford investing $500 million to add 300 jobs and upgrade Lima Engine Plant in Lima, Ohio, to support production of the all-new 2.7-liter EcoBoost® engine for the 2015 F-150
  • Latest EcoBoost technology in an all-new lightweight design provides extremely high output coupled with standard truck-optimized Auto Start-Stop
  • 2.7-liter V6 EcoBoost delivers the performance of a mid-range V8 with greater efficiency, and builds on strong sales of V6 engine-equipped F-150

Ford Motor Company will invest $500 million to upgrade its Lima Engine Plant and add 300 new jobs to support production of the all-new 2.7-liter EcoBoost® specifically engineered for the next-generation 2015 Ford F-150.

The high-output, twin-turbo 2.7-liter V6 EcoBoost with standard Auto Start-Stop features an entirely new design that delivers power and performance in a stronger, smarter package.

This new EcoBoost engine builds on recording-breaking customer demand for F-150 pickups equipped with V6 engines. In fact, 57 percent of new customers in 2014 have opted for either a 3.7-liter V6 or 3.5-liter V6 EcoBoost to power their new F-150. Since 2010, retail registrations of light-duty pickups with V6 engines have grown more than 600 percent, with Ford F-150 directly responsible for 91 percent of this growth, according to Ford analysis of Polk retail new vehicle registration data from IHS Automotive.

“Our truck customers have spoken, and we continue to meet their evolving needs by providing another V6 option in the all-new 2015 F-150,” said Joe Hinrichs, Ford president of The Americas. “The hardworking team at Lima Engine is thrilled to begin building one of the most technologically advanced engines ever designed for America’s No. 1 truck.”

Ford’s investment in Lima follows an announcement in early March that the company will shift production of Ford F-650/F-750 medium-duty trucks from Mexico to Ohio Assembly Plant in Avon Lake, in the Cleveland area, early next year.

Lima Engine Plant

Lima Engine Plant produces the 3.5-liter and 3.7-liter Duratec® V6 engines for multiple Ford vehicles including Edge and Explorer utilities, as well as the Lincoln MKX crossover, MKT utility and MKZ sedan. The $500 million investment will go to a new flexible engine assembly system and renovation of 700,000 square feet of the facility for machining and assembly functions.


“Lima Engine has kept Ford and Lincoln vehicles running for nearly 60 years,” said Bruce Hettle, Ford vice president, North America manufacturing. “Bringing production of the new 2.7-liter EcoBoost to Lima Engine Plant helps build a solid future both for Ford and the dedicated workers in Ohio.”

Lima Engine Plant, which opened in 1957, employs more than 900 people and is one of the largest employers in Allen County. On March 13, the 3-millionth Duratec V6 was built there, and later this year the 40-millionth engine produced at the plant will roll off the assembly line.

“The new jobs at Lima Engine Plant will be a major boost to the community, and continue F-150’s reputation as one of the most American-made vehicles,” said Jimmy Settles, UAW vice president, National Ford Department. “It’s especially exciting that these jobs will go to support a new technology like the 2.7-liter EcoBoost for the all-new F-150.”

All-new 2.7-liter Ford EcoBoost

The high-output, twin-turbo 2.7-liter V6 EcoBoost features a new design that delivers power and performance in a strong and smart package for the 2015 Ford F-150.

2015 Ford F-150 2.7L EcoBoost

Standard Auto Start-Stop technology boosts fuel efficiency and is specially tuned for truck customers. Auto Start-Stop turns the engine off automatically when the vehicle is at a stop – except when towing or in four-wheel-drive mode. The engine quickly restarts once the driver releases the brake.

The materials used to make the new V6 EcoBoost enable its fuel efficiency. The engine uses a compacted graphite iron engine block, the same material used in Ford’s 6.7-liter Power Stroke® turbo-diesel V8. The composite of compacted graphite iron and aluminum saves weight while providing strength where it’s needed most for durability.

All-new 2015 Ford F-150

The all-new 2015 Ford F-150 is tougher, smarter and more capable than ever. It’s completely redesigned – establishing a new standard for full-sized pickups by bringing together improved capability, fuel efficiency and cutting-edge smart vehicle technology.

Using advanced materials – including more high-strength steel than ever in the frame and high-strength, military-grade, aluminum alloy throughout the body – improves durability while saving as much as 700 pounds, giving truck customers greater towing, payload and fuel efficiency performance.

2015 Ford F-150 Platinum

When it goes on sale late this year, the all-new Ford F-150 will have undergone more than 10 million miles of torture testing to ensure it meets or exceeds Built Ford Tough standards.

Along with the all-new 2.7-liter EcoBoost, the new F-150 will feature a complete lineup of powertrains to let customers tailor the nation’s best-selling truck to their needs. The 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine returns, an all-new normally aspirated 3.5-liter V6 debuts and there is an improved 5.0-liter V8.

EcoBoost leadership

In the three years since Ford launched the 3.5-liter EcoBoost in F-150, the company has sold more than 2 million EcoBoost-powered vehicles; EcoBoost is now the most recognized fuel-efficient engine among consumers.

Ford sells approximately 100,000 EcoBoost vehicles monthly around the world, equating to roughly one out of five Ford vehicles sold.

EcoBoost has been a resounding hit with truck buyers, delivering V8-like power along with outstanding towing capability and V6 fuel efficiency. Since 2011, Ford has sold more than 450,000 F-150 trucks equipped with EcoBoost. Through the first two months of 2014, the V6 EcoBoost engine has accounted for approximately 46 percent of F-150 sales.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

With Power and Efficiency, Ford F-150 Leads Light-Duty Pickup Trucks in V6 Sales

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  • 57 percent of Ford F-150 buyers in January and February choose V6 engine option
  • Since 2010, Ford accounts for 91 percent of industry’s growth in V6 truck sales
  • Ford F-150 V6 sales represented 78 percent of all light-duty truck V6 sales in 2013
  • The Ford 3.5-liter EcoBoost™ engine represents 46 percent of F-150 pickup truck sales in February and the 3.7-liter V6 represents 11 percent.

More than 57 percent of Ford Motor Company’s F-150 retail sales so far this year are powered by V6 engines – the highest six-cylinder engine mix in the industry since 1967 – and the company expects that trend to continue for the rest of the year.

V8 engines led truck sales for decades until recently. Over the last three years, retail registrations of light duty pickups powered by V6 engines grew more than 600 percent and F-150 was directly responsible for 91 percent of that growth, based on Ford analysis of Polk retail registration data. In 2013, Ford accounted for 78 percent of all V6-powered half-ton pickups, according to data from Polk, recently acquired by IHS.

February’s engine mix numbers come on the heels of a very strong demand for Ford’s V6 truck engines in 2013. Of all the trucks Ford sold in the calendar year, more than 48 percent of them were powered by a V6 engine.

“We expect those numbers to hold for the rest of the year,” said Doug Scott, Ford Truck marketing manager. “It really is amazing when you consider we are doing that with just two V6 engine choices – the 3.5-liter V6 EcoBoost and the 3.7-liter Ti-VCT V6 engine. When we come out with the new 2015 F-150, we will offer three different V6 engines, so the potential is there to go even higher.”

The new 2015 Ford F-150 will offer a new 2.7-liter EcoBoost engine, to be made in Lima, Ohio, in addition to the 3.7-liter Ti-VCT V6 and 3.5-liter EcoBoost engines.

In the last three years, no competitor has ever eclipsed a 20 percent take rate for V6 engines in half-ton trucks. It’s been a predominantly V8 crowd, until the introduction of Ford’s EcoBoost engine.

“There is a new truck buyer out there who doesn’t hold to the old notion that a truck must be powered by a V8 engine,” Scott said. “Just five years ago, you would have had a hard time making a case for V6 truck engines. Not today. It’s all about fuel effectiveness. It’s the combination of city and highway mileage, horsepower, torque, towing capacity, payload and value. What is the most efficient package for the work I’m trying to do? That’s the key question.”

And it’s one F-150 truck buyers are answering in record numbers for V6 engines.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Ford Police Interceptor/Upfit

Ford Police Interceptor is specially designed to easily add required police equipment.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Ford Claims Bigger Share of Police Vehicle Market Having Reinvented the Segment with New Products

  • In just two years, Ford has revolutionized the police vehicle market by equipping many of its Police Interceptor lineup with standard all-wheel drive, which works full-time for greater mobility and security; adding more fuel-efficient EcoBoost® engines; and introducing two new body styles
  • Ford police vehicle sales grew 48 percent in 2013, while industry police sales rose 22 percent, according to Polk registration data
  • Ford Police Interceptor utility was best-selling police vehicle in the United States in 2013
Ford Police Interceptor gained 9 points of market share in 2013 as sales rose 48 percent, according to Ford analysis of Polk registration data. Demand for Ford police vehicles outpaced overall industry sales, which rose 22 percent last year.

This sales growth comes two years after Ford introduced two new body styles, including a popular utility vehicle, made all-wheel drive, a full-time system, standard equipment across most of its lineup, and rolled out high-performance, but efficient EcoBoost® engine options.

“We revolutionized our police vehicle lineup with three key changes that differentiate us from the competition,” said Jonathan Honeycutt, police marketing manager at Ford. “The new utility vehicle body style meets officers’ growing storage needs; standard all-wheel drive for most models is an industry-first that provides greater mobility and security; plus, expanding the range of EcoBoost engines gives law enforcement agencies more options to suit their needs.

“Together, these three ingredients are driving sales growth and market share gains for Ford.”

‘We need the space’
After decades of success with its reliable Crown Victoria – a V8-powered, body-on-frame large sedan – Ford made a strategic decision to modernize its Police Interceptor with not one, but two distinct body styles: a traditional, pursuit-rated large sedan and a new, pursuit-rated utility vehicle.

“Many officers told us, ‘We need more space, but we also need performance’,” said Honeycutt. “We knew with the amount of equipment officers now have to transport that our utility vehicle would be a hit. Within two years of reinventing the category with an all-new sedan and utility vehicle, we’re approaching nearly 50 percent market share. It’s remarkable.”

In 2013, Ford’s police utility vehicle represented 60 percent of all Ford Police Interceptor sales, and was the best-selling police vehicle in the country.

The new norm: Standard all-wheel drive
Another decision also has paid dividends – both for Ford as well as the safety of its agency partners: In an industry-first, the company now offers standard all-wheel drive for Police Interceptor utility and sedan models, on vehicles equipped with a 3.7-liter or 3.5-liter EcoBoost.

Police agencies have taken notice. Approximately 90 percent of all Police Interceptors sold come equipped with standard all-wheel drive.

“It’s a matter of officer safety, public safety and performance,” Honeycutt explained. “It’s not just the snowbelt, not by a long shot. Wet pavement, dry pavement, chases that lead off-road, traction in all conditions – our all-wheel-drive technology, a system that operates full-time, can help shorten pursuits, which protects everyone involved.

“Officers immediately grasp the advantages of the technology,” he added, “and the response has been phenomenal.”

EcoBoost advantage
The final piece of the company’s reinvention of the police vehicle market is its introduction of fuel-efficient, yet powerful EcoBoost engines.

Police Interceptor sedan and utility vehicle can be equipped with Ford’s 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6, which makes 365 horsepower and 350 lb.-ft. of torque.

In recent Los Angeles County Sheriff Department testing at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif., Ford Police Interceptor sedan and utility vehicle were fastest in both 0-100 mph acceleration runs and average lap times for a third consecutive year.

In addition to world-class power and pursuit capabilities, these EcoBoost engines – like the 3.5-liter and 3.7-liter non-turbo offerings – provide increased fuel economy ratings over outgoing models, helping municipalities with potential savings on fleet fuel costs.

Special Service
The latest addition to Ford’s police lineup – the 2.0-liter EcoBoost Special Service Police Sedan – offers an impressive EPA-estimated rating of 20 mpg city, 30 mpg highway and 24 mpg combined. This Special Service vehicle combines the durability of Police Interceptor sedan with the efficiency of a 2.0-liter EcoBoost engine, which can help save fuel even while delivering 240 horsepower and 270 lb.-ft. of torque.

The 2.0-liter Special Service vehicle comes with many of the same features and technologies as Police Interceptor sedan, such as a 75-mph rear crash test rating, two times durability testing, police-tuned suspension, police brakes, steel wheels, police interior and upfit options.

“As agencies look to replace older, V8-equipped cruisers, Ford is at the ready with highly capable, full-size police vehicles that offer great fuel efficiency for agencies around the country,” said Honeycutt.

For more information on Ford Police Interceptor, visit

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Icons Converge: Ford Mustang Celebrates 50 Years at the Empire State Building

  • On April 16-17, Ford is celebrating 50 years of continuous pony car production by bringing the all-new Mustang convertible to the Empire State Building’s 86th floor observatory, allowing visitors to join in the festivities
  • Ford is re-creating the same feat it achieved nearly 50 years ago – unveiling a Mustang on the world’s most famous attraction, once again making history
  • A technical team is hard at work disassembling a Mustang into sections so that it will fit into the elevators of the 1,454-foot-tall international landmark
Two of the world’s most recognizable icons are coming together April 16-17, as the all-new 2015 Ford Mustang convertible will be on display on the observation deck of the Empire State Building in New York. The display – replicating the same feat from nearly 50 years ago – coincides with the global celebration of 50 years since Mustang debuted at the 1964 World’s Fair in New York.

2015 Ford Mustang Heads to the Empire State Building

“New York is one of the greatest cities in the world, and it’s the place where the Ford Mustang story began 50 years ago,” said Mark Fields, Ford chief operating officer. “We’re thrilled to be visiting the architectural landmark that has been the heart of the Manhattan skyline for 83 years with the newest generation of the car that is the soul of Ford Motor Company.”

Taking a car 86 stories above the densely populated streets of Midtown Manhattan is no simple task. No portable crane can reach the 86th floor observatory, and the spire towering above the relatively narrow deck makes helicopter delivery impossible. That leaves the elevators as the only viable option.

When the Empire State Building opened in 1931 as the world’s then-tallest building – a title it held for nearly 40 years – no one would have envisioned trying to transport a car up in the original elevators. But in 1965, a prototype Mustang convertible was sliced into three main sections plus windshield so that the sections would fit into those elevators.

How Ford Put a 1966 Mustang Atop the World’s Tallest Building
“Like all good craftsmen, our team is measuring twice and cutting once to make sure we can get this Mustang up in the elevators,” said Dave Pericak, Mustang chief engineer. “Like the team that did this in 1965, the current crew visited the Empire State Building before starting and took careful measurements of its new elevators and doors before cutting up the car.”

The 2015 Mustang is nearly seven inches longer and four inches wider than its ancestor, making the task of transporting it up even more challenging. Working from computer engineering data, team members preparing the display car have found just the right places to make the cuts so everything can be loaded onto custom-made racks that can be rolled into the elevators.

The First Generation Ford Mustang – From Sketch to Production
Once everything is uncrated and transported up 86 floors, the technicians will have less than six hours to reassemble the sections into a complete car that will be on display above Manhattan.

“It is a privilege to celebrate the new Ford Mustang, to bring together our two iconic brands, and to make new history with Ford,” said Empire State Realty Trust Chairman, President and CEO Anthony E. Malkin. “The Empire State Building and Ford Mustang are both historic innovators – today, as in the past.”

Visitors to the Empire State Building observation deck can see the new Mustang convertible from 8 a.m. to 2 a.m., April 16-17.

2015 Ford Mustang

The all-new Mustang is the most advanced version yet of the iconic pony car, offering more advanced driver-assist technology than any other car in its class. The sleek new design of Mustang fastback and convertible is backed up by world-class performance from a range of available engines, including a new turbocharged EcoBoost® 2.3-liter and an upgraded 5.0-liter V8 with more than 420 horsepower. The new Mustang goes on sale later this year. In addition to state-of-the-art connectivity systems, Mustang features available track apps, launch control and more.

The all-new 2015 Ford Mustang Convertible

Ford Mustang was revealed to the world with a television advertising campaign on the evening of April 16, 1964, before being shown to the public at the New York World’s Fair on April 17. The car officially went on sale that day, and Ford dealers accumulated a record 22,000 sales and orders that first day on the way to more than 418,000 sales in the first year and 1 million sales in less than two years. Over the past five decades, more than 9 million Mustangs have been sold.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Ford Edge: Comfort

If you need comfort and convenience, the Ford Edge is for you. It offers comfortable seating for five, and the second row seats can be easily folded down for storage space.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Ford C-MAX: Technology

The Ford C-MAX Energi can be recharged in about two and a half hours with the optional 24-volt charging station.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Ford Edge: Efficiency and Power

The Ford Edge comes equipped with power, torque, and efficiency in its EcoBoost® engine.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Ford Motor Company Recognized Among World's Most Ethical Companies

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For the fifth consecutive year, Ford Motor Company has been recognized as one of the world’s most ethical companies by Ethisphere Institute, a leading think tank dedicated to the advancement of best practices in business ethics, social responsibility, anticorruption and sustainability. Ford is among 144 companies selected from thousands around the world. It is the only automaker to receive the honor for 2014, and one of just a few companies to earn the recognition five times. Ford was selected for its corporate responsibility efforts, governance and business practices. More information about the award and the full list of the world’s most ethical companies can be found here.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

As Baby Boomers Streamline and Simplify, Compact Utility Vehicles and Small Premium Home Sales Skyrocket

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  • In the key baby boomer segment, ages 55 to 64, retail registrations of the Ford Escape are up 81 percent since 2009 – higher than overall industry growth
  • Small utility vehicles are most popular with buyers in this age group; more than 46 percent of premium Ford Escape Titanium buyers are 56 or older, indicating trendsetting boomers are opting for high-series models loaded with technology and amenities
  • Baby boomers who purchase homes from Del Webb, which caters to the 55-plus market, prefer more efficient, one-story homes; premium options these buyers specify add about 20 percent to the price of the home

The baby boomer preference for everything bigger over the last 35 years is shrinking, but this generation’s desire for comfort and amenities is still very much at the forefront in the choices they make as consumers.

“Those baby boomers who worked hard for and embraced the affluent lifestyle of the 1970s through the middle of the last decade – owning large homes and spacious vehicles – have reached a turning point,” says Sheryl Connelly, global consumer trends and futurist for Ford. “This generation is now trending toward a simpler way of living, one that doesn’t eliminate the lavish comforts they’ve come to enjoy.

“The boomer population has always set the trends,” Connelly adds, “and now they’ve set a course for a more streamlined life that doesn’t sacrifice style and comfort.”

Industry data supplied by Ford Motor Company and Del Webb, part of the multi-brand homebuilder PulteGroup, show that boomers who comprised the growing market for large homes and made minivans and big SUVs vogue are now shifting to still lavish, but smaller homes and utility vehicles.

As the oldest of this generation – those born between 1946 and 1964 – marked their 60th birthdays in 2006, the population was estimated at about 78.2 million. Industry data suggest the baby boomer instinct for knowing what is chic continues to influence popular lifestyle choices.

The trend in homes increasing in size was a constant from the 1950s on, with average home sizes going from 860 square feet in 1960 to 2,505 square feet in 2012.

While baby boomers helped fuel that trend, evidence shows they are now breaking away, seeking cozier homes with top-of-the-line amenities and features, according to Del Webb, which found 28 percent of people between the ages of 55 and 59 prefer to downsize with their next home purchase.

Homes built by Del Webb, the pioneer and largest builder of 55-plus communities, average approximately 2,200 square feet with plenty of demand for additional living space, such as lofts and sunrooms. These premium-style homes typically include two bedrooms and two bathrooms, a den and a 2.5-car garage.

Data from Ford show boomers are making the same decision with regard to what they put in their garage, moving away from the SUV and minivan segments they dominated in the 1980s and 1990s to smaller, car-based utility vehicles that come with premium packages and styling.

The 2014 Ford Escape compact utility vehicle features 98.1 cubic feet of passenger volume – about a 21.4 percent difference from the 2014 Ford Explorer’s 151.7 cubic feet. Between Ford Escape and Ford Expedition, there is an estimated 31 percent difference in passenger volume.

Baby boomers and the housing trend

Baby boomers who purchase a Del Webb home are typically downsizing to a single-story, ranch-style house.

The average price of a Del Webb home in 2013 was $302,000, with buyer-selected options and upgrades representing approximately 20 percent of that price.

“Baby boomers are the housing market’s fastest-growing category,” says Steve Burch, vice president of strategic marketing for Del Webb. “After talking with Ford and digging into the data, we realize baby boomers are driving two of the largest, most important purchases an individual can make in a lifetime – a vehicle and a home.

“Boomers may be downsizing,” Burch adds, “but they have worked for a long time, and they don’t want to compromise on high-end features.”

Some baby boomers looking for premium home sites purchase lots with golf course or water views. For those wishing to add premium features inside the home, the top five options include granite countertops, hardwood floors, upgraded kitchen appliances, sunrooms and fireplaces.

Baby boomers and small utility vehicles

The kind of premium content baby boomers are specifying as they downsize can also be found in the type of vehicle they now want to drive – smaller utility vehicles loaded with amenities and features.
An uptick in small utility vehicle sales started in 2004 and has continued a steady climb, according to retail sales data from Polk, which was recently acquired by IHS. Correlating with the number of adults considered to be baby boomers is the number of smaller, car-based utility vehicles being sold to that demographic.

“Trendy baby boomers want to downsize their homes and their vehicles, but they’re not willing to give up premium content in either case,” says Amy Marentic, marketing manager for the global car and crossover group, Ford Motor Company. “Personally, I felt the need to downsize. My children are in college and I have no need for the larger utility any more, but I still want to feel like I’m driving something special.”

The largest demographic buying small utility vehicles such as the Ford Escape are people between the ages of 55 and 64, according to Polk. The second-largest demographic are those between 45 and 54. The number of 65- to 74-year-olds purchasing small utility vehicles has more than doubled since 2009 – growing at more than twice the rate of new retail vehicle sales overall in the demographic, according to the same data.

“While Escape is a compact utility built for everyone and we’re seeing strong sales across the board, sales are really being driven by these active adults in the 55- to 64-year-old range,” says Erich Merkle, U.S. sales analyst for Ford. “It’s no secret baby boomers are playing a large role in the compact utility vehicle segment, and will continue to do so well into the foreseeable future.”

Ford Escape is outpacing the industry in key population segments, including every age demographic above 55 years old.

In year-over-year retail sales, Escape is experiencing 24 percent growth – outpacing the national compact utility vehicle average increase of 18 percent. Escape is over-indexing in four cities particularly attractive to baby boomers – Miami, up 53 percent; Orlando, up 34 percent; Phoenix, up 27 percent; and Charlotte, N.C., up 26 percent.

“Some of the strongest growth we’re seeing for Ford Escape is in those places where boomers are buying homes – the Carolinas, Florida and the Southwest,” says Merkle.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

New Ford F-150 -- First Truck to Offer Tougher, Brighter, More Efficient LED Headlamps

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  • Segment-first LED headlamps available for all-new Ford F-150 will last more than five times longer than conventional bulbs
  • Use of LED technology in F-150 headlamps picks up on lighting trends in smartphones, tablet computers and TVs
  • Ford engineers subject LED headlamps to extreme heat and saltwater baths, and pummel with rocks, rock salt and ice to prove lamp toughness

When the assignment is to reinvent the Ford F-150 while maintaining its heritage of being Built Ford Tough, even the headlamps matter.

Until now, headlamps often needed to be replaced long before the end of a vehicle’s life. For the all-new 2015 Ford F-150, Ford wanted durable headlamps that would last as long, or longer, than the truck. Ford lighting expert John Teodecki and his team found the answer in technology they believe could change truck lighting forever – light-emitting diodes, or LEDs.

No other light-duty pickup truck on the road today has LED headlamps. LED lamps use 63 percent less energy than the halogen bulbs seen in competitor trucks, and the light quality and aesthetics of the technology are superior, Teodecki explained. Most important, the LED headlamps in the new F-150 are more durable than conventional lights, and are made to last more than five times longer.

“Stand on it,” Teodecki said, perched atop an 11-pound F-150 headlamp unit. “This lens just won’t break. We fire stones at it, expose it to extreme sun, soak it in saltwater, shoot rocks, rock salt and ice – this thing is very tough to crack.”

LED is the fastest-growing segment in lighting technology, according to trade magazine LED Inside. Applications include smartphones, tablets,computers,TVs, luxury sedans, industrial, commercial and outdoor lighting. Even supermarkets incorporate LED lighting to make produce look fresher.

What sets F-150 LED technology apart is how the headlamps are made, and how superior they are from what the industry has traditionally used. To develop this cutting-edge headlamp technology, Ford leveraged the expertise of its longtime lighting developers OSRAM and Flex-N-Gate. The program is creating more than 30 jobs at the OSRAM Hillsboro, N.H. facility.

Halogen bulbs have been in use for most vehicle applications for years. The design is similar to standard household light bulbs. Thin filaments inside the bulb last for about 40,000 miles before needing to be replaced. Extreme temperatures and vibration from washboard roads can shorten the life of halogen filaments even further.

The next step up from halogen is high-intensity discharge headlamps. HID light illuminates the road more uniformly than halogen bulbs. Ford offers this type of lighting on many of its vehicles, including the current model F-150.

With the LED lighting system available for the new F-150, Ford lighting experts had more freedom with the lamp design, because LEDs are smaller than typical headlamps and are easier to package.
The new Ford F-150 LED headlamp unit uses semiconductor chips to control the light. The technology is much simpler than halogen or HID, which helps make LED lights more durable and therefore longer-lasting.

Ford designers created a unique lens for the F-150 LED headlamp with special machines that carve out 16 precision optical surfaces and 80 facets on the lens face to spread the light evenly. The innovative design magnifies the light, allowing Ford to better illuminate the road for the new F-150 driver using just a single LED per lamp.

Teodecki, a University of Michigan graduate with 29 years’ experience in automotive lighting, puts on a white glove to handle the fine lens – much like a jewelry expert would before showcasing an expensive ring or pendant.

“We don’t want to get fingerprints on the surface, because that would change the lens’ ability to spread the light evenly,” Teodecki said.

The crowning touch for the lighting on the all-new F-150 is another first for the auto industry. Ford designers outlined the LED headlamp with a thin LED tube to create a signature appearance for the new truck that can be spotted from great distances at night.
“Remember the craze in the 1980s with truck light bars?” Teodecki said. “It looks so cool. I’m telling you, this LED light tube is going to be the next big thing. Our new F-150 owners will be longing for dusk every day, just to show off their trucks in dramatic lighting.”

Monday, March 17, 2014

'Need for Speed' Director Opts for Real Stunts Led by Ford Mustang -- Paying Tribute to Classic Car Action Movies

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  • A lifelong fan of classic action film sequences, director Scott Waugh opted to film genuine car-to-car action rather than use computer-generated images in new “Need for Speed”
  • Seven modified 2014 Ford Mustangs were built for filming and promotion of “Need for Speed,” in addition to an early prototype 2015 Mustang fastback
  • Supercharged 2013 Mustang GT used as a camera car for capturing on-the-road sequences

A lifelong fan of classic action film sequences, director Scott Waugh opted to film genuine car-to-car action rather than use computer-generated images in the new film “Need for Speed.” Seven modified 2014 Ford Mustangs were built for filming and promotion in addition to an early prototype 2015 Mustang fastback.

For Waugh, a former stuntman, the visceral experience generated by the performance, sound and visual presence of Ford Mustang makes it a natural choice for the hero car role in the highly anticipated movie opening nationwide March 14.

Waugh’s goal is to tell a character-driven story steeped in car culture that gives the audience a genuine perspective of what it’s like to drive at high speeds and in close proximity to other cars.
“My philosophy has always been you can’t break physics,” said Waugh. “If you do, it hurts the story, because then the physics don’t apply to the characters either.” said Waugh. “Doing practical stunts with cars takes more up-front preparation to set up the shots and ensure safety, but the end result is worth it.”

Computer generated imagery enables today’s filmmakers to produce virtually any sequence their imaginations can conjure. While that’s a great approach to creating science fiction, fantasy or superhero sequences that don’t exist in the physical world, it doesn’t deliver the authenticity Waugh is after with “Need for Speed.”

Starting with “Grand Prix” in 1966, “Bullitt” in 1968 then continuing through the 1970s, a new style for filming cars included mounting cameras on and inside the vehicle, giving viewers a first-person perspective of the action. Waugh and director of photography, Shane Hurlbut used many of the same techniques making “Need for Speed,” in combination with the latest camera technology.

More than 40 different digital cameras – from compact action cams to high-end cinema cameras – were used to capture images. The impressive image quality and small size of the action cameras enabled the directors to get shots that would have been unheard of in the 1960s.

“It’s really complicated to shoot in a car,” said Waugh. “You’re so confined. So we made sure all the camera angles would convince the audience the actors were really driving.”
Three different camera cars – including a supercharged Mustang GT – were used to get the close-in action shots that provide the sensation of speed to viewers. The combination of different cameras gave Waugh and Hurlbut the flexibility to shoot more angles of the action to capture the visceral experience of driving.

In addition to professional stunt drivers, the actors needed to be able to safely handle the high-powered driving machines in “Need for Speed.” The cast, including lead actors Aaron Paul and Imogen Poots, went through intensive training at Willow Springs International Motorsports Park in California, where they learned such intricacies of car control as drifting around corners and hitting precise marks while driving.

One driver who didn’t require intense instruction was champion drifter Vaughn Gittin Jr. Gittin was recruited for the sequences that involved driving the all-new 2015 Mustang that appears in the film. Few drivers are as qualified as Gittin to fling a Mustang around and place it exactly where the director wants it.

The film centers on protagonist Tobey Marshall’s quest to cross America in a modified 2014 Mustang GT. Of the seven wide-body Mustangs, three survived the filming process. Two of those cars are on tour promoting the film, while the other will be auctioned for charity April 12.

2015 Ford Mustang

The all-new Mustang is the most advanced version yet of the iconic pony car. The sleek new design of Mustang fastback and convertible is backed up by world-class performance from a range of available engines, including a new turbocharged 2.3-liter EcoBoost® and an upgraded 5.0-liter V8 with more than 420 horsepower.

In addition to state-of-the-art connectivity systems, Mustang features available advanced driver-assist systems, track apps, launch control and more.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Ford Fund Announces $1 Million William Clay Ford Automotive Design Scholarship

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  • Scholarship commemorates the design legacy of William Clay Ford, former chairman of Ford Motor Company’s design committee
  • Ford Fund commits $50,000 per year during the next 20 years, giving five automotive design students each $10,000 per year
  • Mr. Ford oversaw design of the iconic Lincoln Continental Mark II, considered by many one of the greatest cars ever built

Ford Motor Company Fund will award $1 million in automotive design scholarships during the next 20 years to commemorate the late William Clay Ford’s contributions to the design legacy of Ford Motor Company.

Throughout his 57 years as an employee and board member, Mr. Ford was instrumental in setting the company’s design direction, overseeing development of a number of classic vehicles, including the iconic Lincoln Continental Mark II. He served as chairman of the design committee at Ford for 32 years.

“Design was Mr. Ford’s passion, and his creative vision transformed vehicle design at Ford,” said Jim Vella, president, Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services. “We are honoring William Clay Ford’s legacy by encouraging and supporting the next generation of innovative automotive designers through this scholarship.”

The grant will be paid at the rate of $50,000 per year during the next 20 years, awarding five $10,000 scholarships annually to outstanding college sophomores or juniors pursuing a degree in automotive design. Details of the program will be announced in the coming months.                                                  

William Clay Ford’s role in design

On July 17, 1952, Mr. Ford was appointed manager of special product operations in charge of a group of engineers and designers engaged in advanced planning of the Lincoln Continental Mark II. The Continental Mark II was the successor to the classic Lincoln Continental developed under the direction of Mr. Ford’s father, Edsel Ford, and introduced in 1939. The Continental Mark II is considered to be among the greatest cars ever built.

Mr. Ford told the Henry Ford Museum he wanted to closely follow the designs of the original Lincoln Continental. That included matching the ratio of window glass to sheet metal, re-creating the intimate feel of the interior controls, as well as mounting the spare tire in an impression in the sheet metal of the trunk, recalling the original Continental’s outside-mounted spare.

“I wanted the spare tire in the back. That was the trademark of a Continental,” Mr. Ford said. “We took most of the basic proportions of that car and tried to keep those same proportions in the Mark II, and I think we did pretty well at it.”

When the design committee of the company’s policy and strategy committee was formed in 1957, Mr. Ford became its first chairman, a post he held until he retired from Ford Motor Company in 1989. Mr. Ford was appointed vice president, product design, in 1973.

In addition, he received an honorary doctor of science degree from the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, Calif., in 1981.

More information on Mr. Ford and his legacy can be found here.

Ford Fund support of art and design

Ford Motor Company Fund is an established supporter of the arts, as well as design and arts education. Longtime partnerships include the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibits (Washington, D.C.), Detroit Institute of Arts, College for Creative Studies (Detroit) and Art Center College of Design (Pasadena). At the high school level, Ford Fund is a founding sponsor of Henry Ford Academy (Dearborn), Henry Ford Academy: Alameda School for Art and Design (San Antonio) and Henry Ford Academy: School for Creative Studies (Detroit).

Saturday, March 15, 2014

2015 Mustang Tech Aerodynamic Forum

Ford Motor Company engineers and designers discuss the aerodynamic development of the all-new 2015 Mustang including the new front wheel aero curtains.

Friday, March 14, 2014

2015 Mustang Tech Convertible Technical Forum

The all-new 2015 Ford Mustang convertible was designed from the ground up as an open-top model with unique bodywork and an electrically driven top that opens twice as fast as the 2014 model

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Ford Sourcing to Women-Owned Suppliers Up 50 Percent in 2013; Reflects Long Commitment to Diversity

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  • In 2013, Ford spent $1.8 billion with tier-one, women-owned suppliers, up from $1.2 billion in 2012 – a 50 percent gain
  • Higher spending comes as Ford celebrates 36 years of working with Women’s Business Enterprise; sourcing goals date back to 1978
  • Ford honored as an America’s Top Corporation by Women’s Business Enterprise National Council for third consecutive year

In celebration of National Women’s History Month, Ford Motor Company today announced it increased its sourcing with Women’s Business Enterprise companies 50 percent last year, purchasing $1.8 billion in goods and services from tier-one, women-owned suppliers, up from $1.2 billion in 2012.

“For 36 years, Ford has been committed to working with a supply base that is both diverse and innovative,” said Birgit Behrendt, vice president, Ford global programs and purchasing operations. “Our women-owned suppliers bring an evolving perspective to the needs and wants of our customer base, which inevitably contributes to Ford’s continuous growth.”

Ford established its Supplier Diversity Development program in 1978 to empower diverse communities, including women, minorities and veterans. The goal is to help create wealth by fostering diversity across Ford’s supply chain – prompting consideration of Ford products among those who do business with the company.

Ford works with more than 150 women-owned suppliers, having done business with seven of these companies for more than 25 years. Ford also is celebrating 50 years of business with Roseville, Mich.-based Atlas Tool. Elizabeth Schmidt is owner and CEO of Atlas, which provides high-quality stamping dies to the stamping industry.

During the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council’s annual conference later this month, Atlas Tool, as nominated by Ford, will receive the council’s 2013 Women’s Business Enterprise Stars award. Additionally, Ford will be recognized for a third consecutive year as one of America’s Top Corporations for 2013. The award honors the company’s best-in-class practices to proactively integrate women-owned businesses into its supply chain at all levels. Ford was the first automaker to earn this honor in 2011.

“I salute Ford for its dedication to and investment in women-owned businesses,” said Pamela Prince-Eason, president and CEO of Women’s Business Enterprise National Council. “Women business owners have become a driving force in today’s economic landscape, and with support from companies like Ford, their access to capital and other leadership opportunities will continue to increase.”

Ford’s Supplier Diversity Development program has invested more than $70 billion with women, minority and veteran suppliers since 1978. Ford’s goal is to source more than 10 percent of its annual $100 billion in global purchasing budget with diverse production and nonproduction suppliers.

The Supplier Diversity Development program has been recognized by numerous national organizations for its supplier diversity efforts including:

  • 1988, 1998, 2001, 2012 National Minority Supplier Development Council Corporation of the Year
  • 2010 DiversityInc magazine Top 10 Best Companies for Supplier Diversity
  • 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013 Michigan Minority Supplier Development Council Corporation of the Year
  • 2010 and 2013 Asian Pacific Chamber of Commerce Corporation of the Year
  • 2011, 2012, 2013 United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Million Dollar Club

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Ford Explorer Maintains Top Safety Ratings From NHTSA

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The 2014 Ford Explorer maintains top marks in the federal government’s new car safety rating program. Both front-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive models earned five-star overall vehicle scores in the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s New Car Assessment Program. Available second-row inflatable safety belts offer improved comfort and protection for passengers. This advanced restraint system is designed to help reduce head, neck and chest injuries for second-row passengers, often children and older passengers who can be more vulnerable to such injuries. Ford Explorer also features AdvanceTrac® with Roll Stability Control, Safety Canopy® side air curtain technology for all three rows, and dual-stage airbags for driver and front passenger. The vehicle comes standard with a tire pressure monitoring system and SOS Post-Crash Alert System.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Ford Increases Virtual Crash Computing Power, Helping to Ensure Customer Safety

  • Ford is increasing its investment in computing power by 50 percent to maximize the number and speed of virtual vehicle crashes, allowing safety engineering and vehicle evaluation teams to get more data, more quickly
  • More than 2 million crash test simulations processed in past 10 years
  • Actual crash testing is also vital to ensuring the safety of Ford vehicles; Dearborn, Mich., facility has performed more than 20,000 crash tests since 1954, with more than 31,000 crash tests executed globally

To facilitate growing demands for virtual crash test data, Ford is increasing its investment in computing power an additional 50 percent this year.

The technology investment will allow Ford to more quickly conduct virtual crash tests – some of which can take up to a full day to run – while also collecting more data. More than 2 million crash test simulations have been run over the past 10 years. The use of advanced computer crash test models also allows Ford safety teams to more quickly evaluate and verify a variety of designs.

Ford recently performed its 20,000th full-vehicle crash test at the Dearborn, Mich., development center. Physical crash tests, combined with virtual crash testing, allow Ford to gather more safety data faster than ever before. The work helps to ensure Ford vehicles meet or exceed industry safety standards in the global markets in which they are sold.

20,000th Crash Test

“Today’s vehicles come in a greater variety of body styles, and have more technology and driver-assist features – and many countries have unique regulations,” said Steve Kenner, global director, Ford automotive safety office. “We are able to manage this workload efficiently thanks to our significant investment in technology and the hard work of our teams.”

More than 500 engineers around the world are dedicated to safety at Ford. These teams run thousands of computer simulations before the physical tests are conducted, including frontal impact, side impact, rear impact, roof strength and safety systems checks.

“Ford is committed to designing vehicles that are safe for our customers,” said Nand Kochhar, Ford global safety chief engineer. “In the early stages of vehicle design, we use computer simulations; later we use crash test verification to ensure our vehicles perform as expected.”

The company’s investment in computing power has led to a tenfold increase in the number of virtual crash tests Ford can conduct during vehicle development. The level of detail on the models has increased as well. Safety teams can now run full-vehicle crash simulations with up to 2 million elements, up from half a million just five years ago.

Ford Computing Center

Full-vehicle crash tests

Ford performed its first crash test in 1954. In the 60 years Ford has been conducting crash tests, technology has advanced to allow an increased number of vehicles to be tested. The company’s crash barrier facility can be adapted to perform a wide variety of vehicle crash tests, including frontal, side and rear impact tests where restraints and airbag systems are evaluated. Tests are performed at speeds ranging from less than 20 mph to more than 55 mph.

Vehicle preparation for these physical tests can take from a few days to a few weeks, depending on test complexity. Vehicles are fitted with special mounts, cameras and sensors. On-board systems capture up to 300 channels of information, including crash forces, displacement and pressure.

1960 Crash Test Dummy

After the full-vehicle crash test, the team at the crash facility can provide safety engineers a wide range of crash data in under 30 minutes.
History of crash testing at Ford

Ford’s first crash test was performed in 1954. It took 40 years to do the first 10,000 full-body crash tests and only 20 years for the second 10,000 at the facility in Michigan. Globally, Ford has completed more than 31,000 physical crash tests at labs located in Dearborn, Mich., Merkenich, Germany; Geelong, Australia; and Tatui, Brazil.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Ford Mustang's 50th Anniversary Inspires Limited-Edition OPI Nail Lacquer Collection

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OPI Products Inc., a subsidiary of COTY Inc., and Ford Motor Company today announced a unique collaboration featuring the iconic Ford Mustang. The popular pony car – celebrating its 50th anniversary in April – will serve as the inspiration for a line of OPI limited-edition nail lacquers that will launch internationally in July.

“OPI is thrilled to partner with one of the world’s top automotive companies in celebrating 50 years of Ford Mustang,” said Suzi Weiss-Fischmann, OPI co-founder and executive vice president. “For women, cars and nail lacquer offer a way to express personality. This new collection will deliver elements of sophistication, luxury, power and style fitting for both OPI and Mustang consumers.”

The collection’s hero shade, Race Red, is a tribute to one of Mustang’s most iconic colors.

“Ford Mustang inspires passion like no other car, and we are excited to be working with OPI on an exclusive collection that captures the spirit of our iconic car,” said Melanie Banker, Mustang marketing manager. “There is no better way to express Mustang’s bold personality and the excitement it creates than through color.”

Celebrating an Icon

The Ford Mustang is about to become the newest member of a very exclusive club - vehicles in continuous production for 50 years. Over the last five decades, Mustang has gained worldwide popularity and has become an enduring part of pop culture with more than 9.2 million Ford Mustangs sold and roughly 3,000 appearances on film and TV - including its upcoming big-screen appearance as the hero car in “Need for Speed.”

Mustang’s unique combination of style, performance and affordability established an entirely new class of sporty cars, and its next chapter unfolds with the all-new Ford Mustang. Its most advanced version yet, the 2015 Mustang features an all-new sophisticated design - clearly inspired by its 50-year heritage – and a host of new innovative technologies and connectivity systems.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Demand for All-Wheel Drive Ford Vehicles Triples as the Technology Moves Beyond Big Trucks and SUVs

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  • U.S. retail registrations of Ford passenger cars and utilities equipped with all-wheel drive skyrocketed 189 percent between 2009 and 2013, outpacing the industry’s 79 percent increase for the same period
  • Big gains in unexpected vehicle segments including small utilities and midsize sedans
  • Ford growth coming from large and expanding all-wheel-drive retail market in Northeast and Pacific Northwest

Consumers have traditionally associated all-wheel drive with large SUVs and pickup trucks, but a new breed of more efficient and affordable all-wheel- drive systems is showing up in unexpected segments such as midsize sedans, helping fuel demand for vehicles equipped with the technology.

Ford is among the biggest beneficiaries of this trend. U.S. retail registrations of all-wheel-drive Ford passenger cars and utility vehicles tripled between 2009 and 2013, soaring 189 percent, with strong demand in the Northeast and Pacific Northwest.

For the same period, industry all-wheel-drive sales grew 79 percent, based on Ford’s analysis of new vehicle registration data from Polk (recently acquired by IHS.) Industry sales of all passenger cars and utilities increased 53 percent. In 2013, vehicles equipped with all-wheel drive accounted for 23 percent of the industry, a 4 percentage point increase from 19 percent in 2009.

“All-wheel-drive sales continue to outpace the industry overall,” said Erich Merkle, Ford sales analyst. “But Ford all-wheel-drive sales are increasing faster than the industry in large part due to the success of our newer utilities and passenger cars that offer it.

“Escape and Explorer sold exceptionally well last year,” said Merkle. “That bumped our numbers. But if you look at Fusion, it’s the only midsize sedan among the top five best-selling that even offers all-wheel drive.”

AWD Driving Growth in Northeast and Pacific Northwest

The appeal of fuel efficient and affordable all-wheel-drive systems is helping Ford grow sales and gain share in regions such as the Northeast and Pacific Northwest, markets that have largely preferred import brands over the last few decades.

In the Northeast, Ford’s retail share of passenger car and utility registrations increased 2 percentage points, to 8 percent, between 2009 and 2013. All-wheel-drive passenger cars and utilities account for 30 percent of Ford’s overall growth in the region since 2009.

In the Pacific Northwest, Ford’s retail share of the passenger car and utility market grew to 9 percent last year, up 2 percentage points since 2009 and Ford’s highest retail share of the segment since 2004. All-wheel-drive vehicles represent 23 percent of Ford’s overall growth in the Pacific Northwest.
In the small utility segment, all-wheel drive is the No. 1 reason for purchase consideration in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states.

The Ford Escape small utility and Fusion midsize sedan achieved record retail market shares in the Northeast last year, fuelled by demand for all-wheel-drive models. Escape’s retail share of the small utility segment rose from 8 percent in 2009 to 10 percent in 2013. Fusion’s retail share of the midsize segment increased to just over 8 percent last year, up from just under 7 percent in 2009.

Ford’s intelligent all-wheel-drive technology—mostly invisible to the driver until sensors detect slippery conditions—monitors road surfaces 20 times faster than the blink of the human eye.

During normal driving, power is efficiently channelled to the front wheels. But when road conditions demand it, sensors and software combine to quickly distribute power between the front and rear wheels for better traction and control.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Ford Celebrates International Women's Day, Women's History Month Spotlighting Women Behind All-New Mustang

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  • Ford celebrates International Women’s Day and National Women’s History Month by highlighting the accomplishments of some of the many women who have helped bring the all-new 2015 Ford Mustang to life
  • For 50 years, women have been integral to the Ford Mustang story as engineers, designers, executives and influential customers
  • Mustang is the soul of Ford Motor Company, inspiring passion among team members to create something special for the legions of fans of the iconic pony car

When people think Mustang, what often comes to mind are qualities like sportiness and “masculine cool,” right? So it may be a surprise to learn some key players in bringing Mustang to life over the past 50 years have been women.

Ford is marking International Women’s Day, March 8, 2014, and National Women’s History Month this March with a look at some of the women who have played an important role in creating the all-new Ford Mustang, as well as women who have influenced the pony car over the past 50 years.

Throughout the course of this American icon’s life, women have made contributions to the Mustang story in many ways; in fact, the first person to buy a Mustang was a woman. In 1964, a Chicago schoolteacher, Gail Brown, made history when she became the first Mustang owner in America. She still owns the car, and what makes her story all the more special is that Brown bought her Mustang on April 15 – two days before the car was set to go on sale.

Today, women hold key positions at Ford Motor Company in the development of the all-new Mustang, in roles ranging from engineering the customer drive experience, to picking the car’s colors and materials, to continuing the Mustang legacy of being a household name.

Marcy Fisher, vehicle line director

As vehicle line director for the program, Marcy Fisher oversees every detail of the all-new Ford Mustang as it comes together – from the planning process to when the car hits dealer showrooms.
Fisher is excited to have this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to help develop and launch the all-new pony car in its 50th year.

In addition to her Mustang responsibilities, Fisher serves as vehicle line director for Ford Explorer, Taurus, Police Interceptor, Flex and Escape development.

She has 28 years’ engineering expertise in manufacturing and product development, having joined Ford in 1986 as an engineer. Since then, Fisher has held a number of positions with the company, including several engineering jobs at assembly plants where the vehicles come together on the line; she has also served as director of design engineering in product development.

Fisher has had a passion for people development throughout her career with Ford Motor Company. In addition to her core responsibilities, she serves as co-chair of the vehicle operations diversity council, as a board member for Ford Design Institute and as vehicle operations co-chair for the Ford College Graduate Program. Fisher has worked as a mentor in the manufacturing leadership program, and is a member of the personnel development committee.

She has twice been named to the 100 Leading Women in the Automotive Industry list by Automotive News.

Michele Lubin Henney, vehicle integration supervisor

When customers get behind the wheel of the all-new Mustang this fall, they will get a world-class driving experience thanks in part to the tireless efforts of vehicle integration supervisor Michele Lubin Henney. A lifelong motorsports enthusiast, Henney’s passion was sparked in her grandfather’s auto body shop, and during weekends spent at the track watching her father race motocross. Today, she has her own collection of motorcycles, and loves to hit the road with her husband.

While many engineers are responsible for specific systems and components of a car, Henney is responsible for the integration of vehicle attributes – how the car sounds, how it feels when it drives, fuel economy, and driver and passenger comfort, to name just a few. Her goal is to provide the best holistic experience for the customer.

“Mustang attracts a variety of customers, all of whom are looking for the ultimate Mustang driving experience,” says Henney. “As a female engineer on the program, I can offer a different perspective from the men on the team. I believe the end result is the most refined total driving experience we’ve ever offered our customers. I can’t wait to see their reactions when they drive the new Mustang for the first time.”

For Henney, the best part of the job is the time spent behind the wheel evaluating all aspects of the driving experience as she works to help create the ultimate vehicle to satisfy customers.

“Customer expectations for Mustang are different from other cars,” she explains. “People love their Mustangs. From our involvement with racing, owner groups and enthusiast events, I’ve had the opportunity to get to know the Mustang customer at a level I have not experienced on other programs. Every engineer at Ford is passionate about the work they do, but the performance, style and sound of Mustang inspire a personal connection to the car that makes us want to take it to new levels.
“I’m so proud to be a part of this team,” she adds.

Susan Lampinen, chief color and materials designer

As a car that first prided itself as the car “designed to be designed by you,” Mustang has always offered customers an incredibly diverse array of colors, packages and special editions to make each vehicle a personal creation. For the past decade, Ford chief color and materials designer Susan Lampinen has guided the process of selecting those often iconic exterior paint colors, along with colors and materials for the Mustang cabin.

“Mustang paint colors need to denote performance, sportiness and power,” says Lampinen. “I’m looking at authentic, expressive materials that need to be more premium, with a relentless attention to detail. With Mustang, I’m not afraid to take a risk.”

Lampinen has many favorite Mustang colors from throughout the car’s history, but a current hue, Race Red, stands out among the rest. It is a color that captures the athleticism, power and passion of the pony car – and what Mustang doesn’t look good in bold, expressive red?

Melanie Banker, U.S. marketing manager

As Mustang marketing manager for the United States, Melanie Banker plays a critical role – first in bringing the car to customers in the marketplace, then in monitoring its performance.

A member of the Mustang team for several years, Banker works in both research and development of the new car, as well as in the consumer marketing process.

“Men and women use their cars and the features of their vehicles differently, so having both involved in research and development is extremely important,” Banker explains. “Everyone loves Mustang, so it is important for us to keep all customer groups in mind when making vehicle decisions.

“I hear from customers every day sharing the things they love about the car, and people send me pictures of themselves with their Mustangs,” says Banker. “I get requests from 7-year-olds asking me why we make certain vehicle decisions.”

A Missouri native, Banker has lived all over the country. She now resides in Michigan with her two dogs.

“The dedication of the team as a whole is amazing, because everyone here knows how much Mustang means to its fans and to Ford,” says Banker. “Working on the product side has given me a whole new appreciation for how a company works to put a vehicle together. This has been exceptionally rewarding, and I’m very excited for what’s to come.”

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Introducing the 2015 Ford Super Duty

Every detail of the Super Duty was designed to help you get the job done. And because it's impossible to predict when your job will go from tough to toughest, we made major improvements to the 6.7L Power Stroke V8 Turbo Diesel that drives you through the work day. We gave it best-in-class power ratings and maximum towing capability. And with all this muscle to power your job, best-in-class fuel economy, too.*

*When properly equipped. Class is Full-Size Pickups over 8,500 lbs. GVWR.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

New 2015 Ford F-Series Super Duty Will Deliver Best-in-Class Horsepower, Torque and Towing Capacity

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  • Second-generation 6.7-liter Power Stroke® V8 turbo diesel boosts horsepower to a class-leading 440 horsepower; torque to class-leading 860 lb.-ft. for all models
  • F-450 chassis upgrades raise maximum gooseneck trailer towing capacity to class-leading 31,200 pounds, fifth wheel towing capacity to class-leading 26,500 pounds, and gross combined weight rating to a class-leading 40,000 pounds
  • F-350 available with maximum towing package that increases fifth-wheel/gooseneck trailer towing capacity to 26,500 pounds, and raises the gross combined weight rating to 35,000 pounds
Ford F-Series Super Duty reinforces its leadership in the heavy-duty pickup truck market with engine and chassis upgrades for 2015 that together deliver best-in-class horsepower, torque and towing capacity.

Ford’s second-generation 6.7-liter Power Stroke® V8 turbo diesel now boasts 440 horsepower, up from 400 horsepower, and 860 lb.-ft. of torque, up from 800 lb.-ft, across all Super Duty models from F-250 to F-450.

The 2015 F-450 tops the F-Series Super Duty pickup truck lineup with maximum towing capacity increasing to a class-leading 31,200 pounds, a gain of 6,500 pounds. The truck’s gross combined weight rating increases to a class-leading 40,000 pounds, a gain of 7,000 pounds.

F-350 increases maximum towing capacity as well, to 26,500 pounds, from 23,200 pounds, and the gross combined weight rating goes up 4,500 pounds to 35,000 pounds.

The improved ratings are a result of designing and engineering the truck as an integrated system. The approach enabled Ford engineers to optimize performance across the full Super Duty lineup.

“Our chassis people work in unison with our powertrain people to develop more than a great truck, it’s a machine engineered for work,” said Doug Scott, Ford Truck group marketing manager. “We’re the only manufacturer that develops and builds our own powertrains in this class and when you combine that with a chassis that’s purpose-built for best-in-class power and torque, you can feel the result in the way it drives, especially when towing big loads.”

“Our chassis people have worked in unison with our powertrain people to develop more than a great truck – it’s a machine engineered for work,” he adds.

Power Stroke Engine Improvements

The 2015 Super Duty achieves best-in-class towing performance with a second-generation 6.7-liter Power Stroke V8 turbo diesel engine that was further developed to provide more power, torque and efficiency.

“The 6.7-liter Power Stroke was already a stout engine,” said Robert Fascetti, Ford vice president powertrain engineering. “The improvements we’ve made essentially give Super Duty customers an engine designed for our larger F-650 and F-750 trucks. They may not realize how tough this engine really is.”

Key innovations on the 6.7-liter Power Stroke V8 turbo diesel are its compacted graphite iron engine block and reverse-flow layout. This segment-exclusive design places the exhaust inside the engine’s V-shape, with while the air intake positioned on the outside resulting in a variety of advancements:

  • Shorter airflow from the exhaust system to the new, larger turbocharger sitting between the engine’s cylinder banks improves turbo responsiveness – key to providing torque quickly to truck customers when they need it most
  • Positioning the turbo inside the engine’s valley helps isolate the engine’s hottest temperatures, improving performance and efficiency, while also reducing noise, vibration and harshness to improve driver comfort

Enhancements include a larger turbocharger for faster air displacement resulting in more power. The engine block is made of compacted graphite iron, which is stronger yet lighter than cast iron, is more wear-resistant and has enhanced sealing properties.

“The designers of the original 6.7-liter Power Stroke V8 turbo diesel predicted that it would eventually need to be upgraded for higher output,” said David Ives, Ford Power Stroke technical specialist. “They designed it in a way that made it easier to add a larger turbocharger, increasing airflow and creating more power for dramatically improved performance, yet we haven’t lost any efficiency.”

New injector tips spray a finer mist of fuel into the cylinders which provides a more complete burn and helps reduce noise, vibration and harshness. Other benefits include lower emissions and less fuel deposit buildup on the intake valves over time.

The engine enhancements give the Power Stroke engine a class-leading maximum output of 440 horsepower and 860 lb.-ft. of torque.

Chassis improvements

The F-350 is available with a high-capacity towing package that includes new front springs and a wide track axle, increasing the gross combined weight rating with the 6.7-liter Power Stroke engine from 31,900 pounds to 35,000 pounds.

Improvements to the F-450 that allow it to handle the increased tow rating include commercial- grade 19.5-inch wheels and tires; upgraded rear U-joints and suspension components, including new rear leaf springs; front and rear stabilizer bars; and shocks. The steering system has stronger gears and linkages and the fifth-wheel/gooseneck has an increased towing capacity. The brakes are larger brakes and feature new antilock brake calibration for enhanced braking performance.

Ford F-Series Super Duty: A Decade of Growth

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

All-New Ford F-650/F-750 Anchors America's Broadest, Best-Selling Lineup of Commercial Trucks

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  • Built Ford Tough: Fully designed and developed by Ford Truck engineers in Dearborn, robot-tested over taxing durability courses, 500,000+ miles of harsh dynamometer engine testing at extreme power levels and temperatures and built in the USA by Ford
  • Great Value: Ford 6.7-liter Power Stroke® V8 diesel engine and Ford TorqShift® six-speed automatic transmission enhanced for medium-duty use with great power, performance and fuel economy, backed by unsurpassed warranty and national network of more than 3,000 Ford service centers
  • Work-Ready: All-new, upfit friendly chassis developed in cooperation with leading industry body makers, clean chassis capable of accommodating vocational bodies with little to no modification, and all-new dedicated tractor model for heavy trailering

Ford, America’s truck leader, today sets a new standard in medium-duty commercial work trucks with the all-new Ford F-650/F-750 – the toughest, great value and work-ready Ford medium-duty trucks ever.

The new F-650/F-750 joins America’s broadest commercial vehicle lineup, delivering an impressive combination of commercial-grade quality, capability and convenience that now includes segment-exclusive Ford gasoline and diesel engines, outstanding performance at an affordable price, and comfortable and modern interiors.

“Every day, we’re thinking of new ways to better serve our hard-working customers,” said John Ruppert, general manager, Ford Commercial Vehicle Sales & Marketing. “The same Ford engineers who developed the best-selling F-Series have designed this all-new medium-duty lineup that can meet the demands of our toughest customers with trucks that are cost-effective, ready for work, and, most importantly, can help keep them going on the job.”

The Ford F-650/F-750 anchors Ford’s Commercial Truck lineup – America’s best-selling line of commercial trucks for 29 years – giving vocational customers an unmatched one-stop shop to meet their needs, from a Class 1 Ford Transit Connect cargo van to a Class 7 Ford F-750 tractor rig. Every truck and van in the Ford Commercial Truck lineup will be all-new or significantly refreshed in the next 18 months.

The Ford F-650/F-750, which will be 2016 model year trucks, will be available spring 2015.

Offered in three cab styles – Regular Cab, SuperCab and Crew Cab – and three models – straight frame, dock height and an all-new dedicated tractor model for heavy towing – the new F-650/F-750 features a bold look inside and out, a powerful and efficient second-generation 6.7-liter Power Stroke® V8 diesel, medium-duty six-speed TorqShift® automatic transmission and a host of unique features not found on any other medium-duty truck.

The 2016 F-650/F-750’s new exterior styling commands attention on the road with Built Ford Tough looks that also help deliver improved functionality. The all-new mesh grille framed by hallmark Ford nostrils helps improve airflow for optimal cooling performance. Also new are sharp fenders, aerodynamic headlamps and F-650/F-750 badges embossed in “Bold Leadership” font. Available PowerScope® trailer tow mirrors feature large standard and spotter mirrors and segment-exclusive power telescoping and folding design.

The area behind the cab was redesigned to more easily accommodate custom work bodies, such as tow truck, dump truck and ambulance bodies.

Tough Testing

The 2016 Ford F-650/F-750 is Ford’s toughest medium-duty truck ever. Before it goes on sale, it will have been torture-tested by people and machines in labs, at Ford proving grounds and on America’s highways and city roads.

The grueling testing simulates the demands Ford’s customers will subject the truck to throughout its useful lifetime, from hauling heavy loads through the brutal summer heat of Death Valley to towing heavy trailers up steep grades – in temperatures from 40 degrees below zero to 120+ degrees Fahrenheit.

Part of the F-650/F-750 testing includes Ford’s robotic test driving program – now in use at the company’s Michigan Proving Grounds in Romeo, Mich. – to meet demands that Ford trucks undergo ever more strenuous Built Ford Tough testing.

“Some of the tests we do on our commercial trucks for North America are so strenuous that we limit the exposure time for human drivers,” said Dave Payne, manager, vehicle development operations.

The robotically driven vehicles are expected to repeatedly perform tests on torturous surfaces that can compress 10 years of daily driving abuse into courses just a few hundred yards long, with surfaces that include broken concrete, cobblestones, metal grates, rough gravel, mud pits and oversized speed bumps.

Tough Powertrains

Newly available for F-650/F-750 is the Ford-built and proven 6.7-liter Power Stroke V8 diesel paired with a commercial-grade six-speed 6R140 automatic transmission with available power takeoff provision to run accessories in the field, a dump body, crane or other vocational equipment.

Building upon the success of the Power Stroke in the F-Series Super Duty lineup, the F-650/F-750 6.7-liter Power Stroke and TorqShift have been developed and tested for medium-duty applications, with three horsepower and torque levels and a five-year/250,000 mile limited warranty.

Ford is the only medium-duty truck manufacturer that designs and builds its own diesel engine and transmission combination, ensuring the powertrain will work seamlessly with all chassis components and vehicle calibrations – from concept to execution. This approach also enables Ford engineers to optimize the vehicle’s performance across the entire lineup.

Key innovations on the 6.7-liter Power Stroke V8 turbo diesel are its compacted graphite iron engine block and reverse-flow layout. The advanced design places the exhaust inside the engine’s V-shape while the air intake is positioned on the outside of the V. This segment-exclusive design naturally improves a variety of attributes:

  • Shorter airflow from the exhaust system to the turbocharger sitting between the engine’s cylinder banks improves turbo responsiveness – key to providing torque quickly to truck customers when they need it most
  • Positioning the turbo inside the engine’s valley helps isolate the engine’s hottest temperatures, helping improve performance and efficiency, while also reducing noise, vibration and harshness to improve driver comfort

Power Stroke drivability is enhanced with tow/haul mode that includes a switchable integrated engine brake. The driver can regenerate the diesel particulate filter on-demand to clear out trapped soot from the exhaust system to help maximize performance. Intelligent Oil Change Monitoring is standard so oil changes are based on driving patterns and load demands instead of fixed distance intervals.

During testing, the 6.7-liter Power Stroke V8 endured the equivalent of 500,000+ miles on an engine dynamometer, replicating the duty cycle of the harshest-use customer.

The fuel-efficient transmission features a low first gear ratio for optimized takeoffs under load and optimized gear ratio span across all gears for optimized fuel economy. It’s also strengthened with new materials and extra pinion gears for medium-duty service.

Ford remains the segment-exclusive automaker to offer a gasoline-powered engine for a medium duty truck. The 6.8-liter V10 is now available for both F-650 and F-750 models with the 6R140 six-speed automatic transmission. The 6.8-liter V10 can be factory-prepped for converting to compressed natural gas or liquid propane gas as cost-effective alternatives to unleaded gasoline.

Great Value

By controlling every aspect of development in-house, from design to manufacturing to service, Ford will be able to offer F-650/F-750 customers exceptional value, convenience and cost of ownership.
For service needs, a network of more than 3,000 Ford Commercial Truck and retail service dealers are ready to tackle any service need with minimized travel time and extended service hours, to keep work trucks on the road and in the field longer.

Leveraging the best-selling F-Series Truck lineup, the F-650/F-750 interior is designed and engineered with a level of fit, finish and refinement that matches that of Ford F-Series Super Duty F-250 through F-550 trucks. New features include a 110-volt power outlet, available SYNC® and Crew Chief factory-installed fleet management telematics, and an available rapid-heat, supplemental cab heater that quickly warms the cab in cold climates. Remote start is also available. A new steering wheel has advanced controls to focus driver attention on the road, and a click of the turn lever features automatic five-blink turn signals. A choice of hydraulic or air brakes is available.

“We have a lot of design and feature comforts that you might otherwise find in more mainstream products,” said John Davis, Ford Commercial Truck chief nameplate engineer. “Comfort and convenience additions include our quiet diesel, hands-free mobile device connectivity and improvements to ride and steering.”

An all-new Ford engineered frame and suspension include a newly available anti-roll bar for enhanced roll control and longer leaf springs for an improved ride over the previous model.

Work Ready

The 2016 F-650/F-750 is easier than ever to prep for medium-duty jobs. Auxiliary components such as the diesel exhaust fluid tank and standard fuel tank are now located under the cab instead of behind it on the frame. This clean cab-to-axle design satisfies more truck body applications and makes customizing easier, which helps reduce the customer’s final costs and time to delivery.

Aluminum fuel tanks with the Power Stroke diesel are lighter to help efficiency. The electrical system is more robust than the outgoing model to handle larger component loads.

“We leveraged our strengths from being the leader in classes 1-5 to create a better F-650/F-750,” Davis said. “We brought the new medium-duty program in-house to utilize our expertise from our other tough truck and commercial vehicle lines which ultimately results in a better product at a competitive price that’s built in the USA.”

Sunday, March 2, 2014

TV Commercial for "Need for Speed" and the 2015 Ford Mustang

"Need for Speed" starring Aaron Paul opens in theaters nationwide on March 14, 2014. In the movie, Paul drives a modified 2014 Ford Mustang and the all-new 2015 Ford Mustang in its first film appearance. The 2015 Ford Mustang goes on sale this fall.