The Ford Motor Company has built its legacy upon innovation.
That tradition shows no sign of stopping — at the Intelligent Transportation Society of America’s yearly
conference in Washington, D.C., the automaker unveiled the Ford Connected
showed off two innovations aimed at making the road a safer place for drivers
and pedestrians alike. These devices allow vehicles to communicate with other
vehicles and mobile devices through Bluetooth®, blockchain
encryption, and short-range communication technology.
first demonstration showed a roadside unit that allows vehicles to wirelessly
communicate with cyclists, pedestrians, and other road users. It allows
pedestrians to be notified of oncoming vehicles they might not notice.
second high-tech safety device aims to smooth out the issues inherent at
four-way stops. It gives drivers an easier way to determine right-of-way,
without the frustration of waving a hesitant driver on, while insisting,
“Please, you go first.” Instead, the vehicles will have a conversation,
ensuring smoother transitions and fewer miscommunications.
Connected Vehicle Platform and Product Executive Director Don Butler is excited
about the potential for these innovations. Aside from helping traffic run
smoothly, Butler is excited to gather more data about traffic, construction,
and emergency vehicles, so cities can strategically improve their infrastructure.
Last month, Ford announced that the new 2020 Ford Escape would be the best-performing Escape that the Blue Oval has ever produced.
For starters, the 1.5-liter EcoBoost, which will come
standard on S, SE, and SEL models, will produce 180 horsepower and 177 lb-ft of
torque and enable towing of up to 2,000 pounds. For the first time ever, this
EcoBoost engine will feature cylinder deactivation for more efficient driving.
The other gas engine is the 2.0-liter EcoBoost, available on
the Titanium, which will crank out 250 horsepower and 275 lb-ft of torque. This
engine will also launch the EcoBoost from 0-60 mph in 10-percent less time than
the outgoing 2.0-liter Escape engine and will enable towing up to 3,500 pounds.
The Escape became the world’s first hybrid SUV back in 2005.
For 2020, Ford is offering two alternative-fuel powertrain options; the Ford
Escape will be available as a hybrid or as a plug-in hybrid. No matter which
powertrain the Escape is set up with, Ford estimates that the Escape will
manage at least 400 miles between fill-ups. The standard 2020 Ford Escape
hybrid with front-wheel drive should achieve a best-in-class EPA-estimated
range — more than 550 miles on a single tank.
Just last month, Mustang6G shared that Ford may have let the cat (or pony, as it were) out of the bag at a recent dealer event about a new four-door Mustang sedan on the horizon. If we are to believe the rumors, this new Mustang will take its power from a turbo V8 and compete directly with models like the Audi A7 and the Porsche Panamera.
This is the second big Mustang rumor we’ve heard recently. Other reports suggest that we will see a Mach 1 all-electric performance SUV within the next three years; this model will fuse together the Ford Mustang and Ford Explorer into one high-performance SUV.
It is interesting for Ford to hint at this upcoming sedan, since earlier this year the Blue Oval announced that it would be phasing out its sedans entirely. The Fiesta will continue for the 2019 model year, and the Fusion will stick around awhile longer, but the rest will be disappearing in favor of electric vehicles and SUVs. Yet here comes a brand new four-door Mustang sedan.
Nothing, of course, is official yet, but we’ll keep our ears to the ground for more Mustang rumors and confirmation directly from Ford in the coming months. Contact us at L&L Motor to find out about the latest developments from Ford.
Earlier this fall, Ford confirmed something major for America’s favorite pickup truck: Ford F-150 hybrid production will begin at the Rouge complex in Dearborn, Michigan, in 2020. The Rouge complex this year celebrates its 100 year anniversary; its history dates back to 1918, when workers built Eagle Boats during World War I for the United States Navy.
It is fitting that the new Ford F-150 hybrid will be produced at this location. Since its inception, Rouge has been about producing innovative vehicles that lead the market.
“Just as the Rouge has been a harbinger of progress for a century, Ford is committed to ensuring our trucks continue to power the world in a sustainable way — whether they are powered by EcoBoost engines, hybrid powertrains, or are fully electric,” according to Ford.
Rouge will certainly be doing the environment a favor by producing a new hybrid pickup. But this won’t be the complex’s only environmental achievement. In fact, the plant recently earned zero-waste-to-landfill status and is currently working to remove potable water from its manufacturing process.
Ford F-150 hybrid production will also involve a $45 million investment in the Advanced Manufacturing Center in Redford and a $35 million investment in the Allen Park UAW-Ford training facility.
Big things are coming from the Blue Oval. In fact, just last month, Ford announced that it will reduce platforms for its vehicles. Instead of the nine platforms that currently underpin its vehicles, Ford will soon have just five. At the same time, Ford will add nine new nameplates to its lineup by 2023. That will bring its total vehicle count to 23, which is three more than it currently offers.
So what are the five platforms that will remain? According to The News Wheel, they are the unibody for FWD and AWD, unibody for RWD and AWD, unibody for battery-electric vehicles, unibody for commercial vans, and body-on-frame for RWD and AWD. This decision will help evolve the One Ford Concept that former CEO Alan Mulally originally developed. More importantly, this will save Ford $7 billion and will get new Ford models into dealerships faster.
Though Ford plans to add nine new vehicles within the next five years, it will also be retiring the Fusion, Taurus, C-MAX, Flex, and Fiesta. In doing so, Ford will drop the average age of vehicles in its lineup from 5.7 years to 3.3 years.
“It’s like selling fish and vegetables,” said Hau Thai-Tang, Ford’s head of product development and purchasing. “The fresher it is, the better they do.”
For more updates from Ford, contact us at L&L Motor. We can also set you up with a test drive of your favorite Ford model.
While we fight for equality for women here in America, we must also remember that women and their male allies throughout the world are also fighting that same battle. Nowhere is this more apparent than in Saudi Arabia where, for the first time, women have earned the right to drive.
Ford hopes to make a difference in this monumental policy change. Thus far, Ford has offered special driving courses to female drivers in Saudi Arabia and even bestowed a brand new Ford Mustang to a women’s rights activist. Ford’s latest move is to fund the driver’s license fees for women in Saudi Arabia via its vehicle distributor, Al Jazirah Vehicles Agency Co.
Though it seems small, this is a huge gift from Ford, as getting licensed in Saudi Arabia costs nearly $700. Any Saudi Arabian women who want to take advantage of this assistance need only to submit a receipt for the fees by September 30.
“Ford is committed to delivering the best products, services, and we are in turn committed to helping out female customers in getting the best overall ownership experience in the Kingdom,” remarked Mohammed Al Kraidees, CEO, Al Jazirah Vehicles Agencies Co. “AJVA will pay the cost of obtaining a driver’s license, and we hope that this will further facilitate this process and help more women to get behind the wheel of their dream Ford car as soon as possible.”
We here at L&L Motor would like to congratulate Ford for helping the women of Saudi Arabia gain their driving independence. This time is long overdue.
This year marks the 15th anniversary of Ford’s innovative program for new drivers, Ford Driving Skills for Life. To mark the special occasion, Ford is offering several program expansions and new technologies to aid in safe driving.
The tour kicked off last month in New Orleans and will eventually be held in 13 cities with 60 different hands-on sessions across the country. Ford anticipates instructing more than 5,500 students in the US, free of charge. The program is also expanding globally to Cambodia, Czech Republic, and Morocco. Notably, Ford will be offering the program to women in Saudi Arabia.
As for new technologies, Ford is now implementing virtual reality to help teach technical skills to new drivers and will also use a new tool to teach the dangers of distracted driving. Adult drivers will recognize the pain of driving in the hangover suit, which mimics the true physical difficulties of driving the day after copious alcohol consumption.
“As we celebrate 15 years of stellar programing to keep new drivers safe, we continue to build momentum with new technologies that help to ensure smart driving,” explained James Graham, global manager, Ford Driving Skills for Life. “Our program is expanding in multiple ways – by reaching more people here and abroad, and by offering cutting-edge technologies that enhance our curriculum. We look forward to many more years of success. And we are proud to be the global leader in training new drivers to keep them safer behind the wheel.”
The Ford Driving Skills for Life will unfortunately not make it to Utah this year. The closest locations to L&L Motors include stops in California and Arizona.