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    Death Valley, South Carolina
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  • Last Activity: 11-21-2015 11:24 PM
  • Join Date: 07-07-2008
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09:07 PM - 2b2 quoted ausrutherford in post Re: Ford’s October China Sales Rise Seven Percent numbers!!! from ausrutherfordhttp://home.surfree.c...
08:10 PM - 2b2 quoted ausrutherford in post Re: Ford Sept2015: U.S. Retail Sales Best Since 2004;
...&d=1447289214 from ausrutherfordhttp://home.surfree.c...


Latest Blog Entry

Posted 05-16-2012 at 10:56 AM by Comments 1
Originally Posted by ausrutherford View Post
The Next Wave Begins
May 16, 2012
By: Austin Rutherford

Now that the Fusion/Mondeo and MkZ are nearing completion. Ford is putting all efforts into the next stage of CD4 on the front burner. FIN has now learned of some interesting information of this product cadence.

As part of its ultra secretive nature, Ford has named this second wave of mid-size products simply CD4.2. This CD4 program, like CD4.1, will further combine the efforts of Ford's subsidiaries and in the process will save the company money.

According to a source connected with the program, the next Ford Edge - including MkX - and S-Max will use the same modified CD4 platform. We expect them not to share body styles however since this would compromise their current segments. All three should have their own "top hats."

This raises the question: Will the Edge be produced in Europe and/or the S-Max in North America? This is not yet known, but we will tell you either way when we find out. What we can tell you is that the current Edge was deeply wanted by Ford of Europe, but the lack of a diesel killed it. This is a problem that the next Edge will not have.

As we have already discussed, the next Ford Edge will carry on the process of the engine downsizing seen with the Fusion in that there is no current plans to offer a V6 engine in the vehicle. However, the platform will be capable of a V6 for the MkX will continue on offering a V6 like that of the 2013 Lincoln MkZ.

Ford has also started work on a CD4.3 wave. What vehicle(s) lie in store here? Little is known at this point.

Expect both the next Edge, MkX, and S-Max to debut sometime next year with sales starting in the late 2013/2014 period.

Posted 05-11-2012 at 12:10 PM by Comments 0
Originally Posted by ausrutherford View Post
Sales of Focus Up; China, Europe Hit the Wall
May 11, 2012
By: Austin Rutherford

Ford sales in the first quarter of 2012 were a double-edged sword. Even with higher sales in North America, Europe and China dragged total sales downward. Ford will have many new products in the coming months to help remedy both problems.

Ford of Europe is experiencing weakening demands for their products as the debt crisis continues. There is glimmer of hope however out of the storm for market share is on the rise. Sales of vehicles like the Focus are gaining traction allowing for this increase.

Even though many companies are slowing development of models, or canceling them altogether, Ford of Europe is pulling a page out from Ford of North America’s handbook: When in recession, speed up development. Over the course of 2012 to the end of 2013, Europe will released all-new versions of the Ranger, Transit, Kuga, Mondeo, S-Max, and Galaxy with many other all-new, face lifted, or new derivatives of models coming as well.

One of the big reasons European margins are hurting is overcapacity. Ford will however be adding capacity. “Madness!” you say? Well Ford will be putting its cheap labor Romanian plant into full swing for the all-new B-Max. Instead of very low margins like that of competitors, Ford will be allowed to make more money for the vehicle than if it was made in Western Europe. Ford will also start production of two plants in Russia, which will produce vehicles like the Explorer and Transit.

Even if European sales stay at their low rates, Ford of Europe’s sales could actually rise a lot thanks to these new, “cheap” plants.

Ford of China’s sales fell 16% in the first quarter. This, however, can be contributed almost by the Ford Focus switchover. The all-new Ford Focus launched late in April and curved sales of the older model as customers waited for the improved third generation. The fall, however, does show a sour point at Ford China.

The Ford Focus makes up roughly one fourth of Ford’s Chinese sales. Any disruption in its chain causes the entire endeavor to show a loss. Even with Ford adding products like the Kuga, EcoSport, and Explorer this year and in 2013, Ford needs to diversify their Chinese lineup further. Three cars, in sedan and hatch, are not enough. Whether Ford needs to release cheaper cars in segments with the Ford brand or not, more cars from the A00 to the C segment (Chinese segmentation) is needed if Ford wants to grow is all fields of the Chinese auto industry.

Even with sales being lower due to debt and foreseeable product shifts, there were many bright lights in Ford’s sales. North American sales were up thanks to a lift in the United States. The biggest gainer in this market, and the world, was the Focus. The Focus was so popular in March that it likely scored over 100,000 units globally. Compared to the same period in 2011, 2012 saw sales of the Focus rise nearly 14% globally. Expect sales of the Focus to rise even more as plants in China and Thailand come online. Ford F-Series (North American), Explorer, and Edge all saw nice gains from the previous years.

Ford is not standing still. In the coming months, Ford will release the all-new B-Max in Europe and the all-new Ranger will start production and sales in South America. Ford of North America will start the global debut of the all-new Escape/ Kuga in May, while Ford Asia Pacific and Africa will have opened two all-new plants for the third gen Focus.

If you have any figures of markets not listed, please tell us in the comments section. Big thanks to Matt of Best Selling Cars.

Markets included in the first quarter were Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, Chile, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kuwait, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mexico, Morocco, Netherlands, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, Qatar, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, Venezuela, and Vietnam.

Sales by Category
  1. Ford Focus - 236,261
  2. Ford Fiesta(World/LA) - 189,246
  3. Ford F-Series(World)/ Lobo - 170,913
  4. Ford Escape/ Kuga - 91,632
  5. Ford Fusion(World) - 69,460
  6. Ford Transit V,VII - 56,650
  7. Ford Mondeo - 40,636
  8. Ford Edge - 39,298
  9. Ford Explorer - 38,444
  10. Ford C-Max - 32,636
  11. Ford E-Series - 31,125
  12. Ford Figo/ Ikon(Mx) - 25,154
  13. Ford Mustang - 21,497
  14. Ford Ka(Euro) - 20,810
  15. Ford Ranger(World) - 19,423
  16. Ford Transit Connect - 19,350
  17. JMC Boadian/ BD-Series/ Boarding/ JX-Series - 18,720
  18. Ford Ka(S.Am.) - 16,643
  19. Ford Taurus - 16,563
  20. JMC Qingka/ Carrying/ Convey - 16,543
  21. Ford Ranger II - 16,039
  22. Ford EcoSport - 14,548
  23. Ford S-Max - 13,319
  24. Ford Expedition - 11,154
  25. Ford Flex - 7,671
  26. Lincoln MkZ - 7,302
  27. Lincoln MkX - 7,277
  28. Ford Galaxy - 7,217
  29. Ford Cargo - 6,835
  30. Ford Falcon - 4,891
  31. Ford Fusion(Euro) - 4,675
  32. Ford Fiesta(Indian)/ Ikon(S.Af.) - 4,596
  33. Ford Territory - 3,884
  34. Ford Crown Victoria - 3,827
  35. JMC Yusheng - 3,653
  36. Lincoln MkS - 3,420
  37. Landwind/ X6/ X8/ X9 - 3,354
  38. Ford F-Series(S.Am.) - 2,240
  39. Lincoln Navigator - 2,206
  40. Ford Courier - 1,825
  41. Ford MkT - 1,608
  42. Ford Heavy Trucks - 1,425
  43. Ford Econovan - 904
  44. Ford Everest/ Endeavor - 742
  45. Ford Bantam - 737
  46. Lincoln Town Car - 477
  47. Troller T4 - 237
  48. Ford I-Max - 236
  49. Landwind Fashion/ CV9 - 171

Lincoln Mark LT - Unknown

*Models that have ended production are in BOLD*

Sales by Category

City - 20,810
Sub-Compact - 235,639
Compact - 236,261
Mid-Size - 117,398
Full-Size - 29,178

Utility Vehicles including MPVs
Sub-Compact - 19,223
Compact - 125,654
Mid-Size - 116,446
Full-Size - 22,639

Trucks & Ute Vans
Sub-Compact - 2,562
Compact - 54,109
Mid-Size - 20,327
Full-Size - 260,928
Medium Duty - 1,425
Cab-Over - 23,378

Pony Car - 21,497

Posted 04-27-2012 at 12:35 PM by Comments 0
Originally Posted by ausrutherford View Post
Best fuel economy of any automatic
April 27, 2012

The EPA has completed its final testing of the last new engine for the 2013 Escape. The figures come in line with what Ford expected for the small four cylinder.

The new 1.6L EcoBoost is officially rated at 23 city, 33 highway. This makes the Escape the most fuel efficient automatic compact crossover offered in the US. Note that this is explicitly for the automatic. The Mazda CX-5 still lays claim to the best overall, but that is with a manual. While Ford might not claim the highest number overall, automatics account for well over 90% of the US market.

As Ford also expected, the Escape's numbers also bet comparable configurations from the Honda CR-V, the best selling compact CUV in the world, and that of the Toyota Rav4.

All Escape power trains now come with 30 or more MPG highway. This is a considerable improvement from the last model which never came with a figure higher than 28 highway.

The 2013 Escape should start arriving on dealer lots within the first two weeks of May. All Escapes are now built in Louisville, Kentucky.

Posted 04-22-2012 at 02:07 PM by Comments 1
Originally Posted by ausrutherford View Post
One of 3 new Utilities Launching in China
April 22, 2012

First seen as a slightly veiled concept in India, Ford today rolled out the all-new EcoSport in front of the world press for the Beijing International Auto Show. The EcoSport not only is a global vehicle destined for over 100 markets, but is the first such vehicle engineered by Ford of South America.

The second generation EcoSport is powered by an available 1.0L I3 EcoBoost engine, which Ford recently announced would also come to North America. This small engine is capable of 125 hp and is no bigger in length than a typical laptop computer.

Do not let the fact that this vehicle is intended for emerging markets fool you, the new EcoSport can be equipped with Sync, keyless start, and keyless entry. The top of the line trim will also be the expensive, and profitable, Titanium, which will be offered worldwide.

The EcoSport is one of three new utility models launching in China this year. This will include the locally made Kuga, same as our Escape, and the American-imported Explorer. These three join the imported Edge in expanding Ford's lineup in the fastest growing segment in the Chinese market.

Ford has announced that as of now, the Ford EcoSport will expand from its current plant in Brazil to also include China, Thailand, and India. The question that remains, would you also like to see it offered in North America and Europe? Tell us your thoughts in the comments.

Press Release:

  • Created for the urban environment, the all-new Ford EcoSport offers contemporary design, smart technologies and a high driving position – all in a compact, agile, fuel-efficient shape
  • Powered by an array of powertrains, including an all-new 1.0-litre, three-cylinder EcoBoost™ engine, the aerodynamically honed Ford EcoSport is designed to be a benchmark in fuel economy while giving customers the performance feel of a larger engine
  • Packed with aspirational appeal, craftsmanship and sophistication – including the Ford SYNC driver connect system with voice control – the all-new EcoSport offers a compelling alternative to the small car in big cities

BEIJING, April 22, 2012 – Ford today revealed the production version of the all-new Ford EcoSport and announced plans to build the compact, fuel-efficient urban SUV in China, in addition to India, Thailand and South America.

EcoSport’s global debut at the 2012 Auto China in Beijing means customers in China will soon be able to choose an aspirational sports utility vehicle alternative to a small car. The Ford EcoSport offers a confident stance, a high driving position and robust character on top of the agility, manoeuvrability and fuel efficiency that comes with a compact footprint. It’s the perfect combination for the city – ready for work and ready for play.

Within a contemporary design aerodynamically honed for fuel economy, the EcoSport is full of smart technologies, features and craftsmanship that offer customers more than they would expect in this segment.

With a number of powertrain solutions, including Ford's newest, most advanced engine the 1.0-litre EcoBoost™, EcoSport is designed to be a benchmark in fuel efficiency. It also offers the Ford SYNC driver connect system with voice control and many other innovative features in a spacious and comfortable interior with new levels of craftsmanship as well as outstanding quietness and refinement.

“The Ford EcoSport reflects our commitment to serve our Ford customers in China and around the world with the cars, utilities and trucks they want and value,” said Joe Hinrichs, president, Ford Asia Pacific and Africa. “EcoSport delivers outstanding quality, great fuel efficiency with the 1.0-litre EcoBoost engine, superior safety and really smart design with SYNC.”

The production reveal of EcoSport follows rapidly after the vehicle’s global preview in January at the Delhi Auto Expo as well as in Brazil, where Ford EcoSport was developed by a global Ford development team. In addition to production in Chongqing, the EcoSport will be manufactured in Camaçari, Brazil, Rayong, Thailand, and Chennai, India, and will be offered in nearly 100 markets globally.

EcoSport joins Ford’s family of small global vehicles, which will reach an annual production capacity of 2 million units by 2015.

“The all-new EcoSport is designed and engineered specifically for customers in global growth markets using Ford’s global SUV engineering expertise and reflecting our commitments for quality, leading fuel economy, safety and smart technology,” said Raj Nair, group vice president, Global Product Development. “We’re delivering innovative products like this to drive our global growth.”

EcoSport Titanium

Ford is showcasing its top-of-the-line model, the EcoSport Titanium, on stage in Beijing, painted in distinctive Mars Red. A similar model is being revealed today in Salvador, Brazil, as EcoSport’s global launch momentum builds.

EcoSport Titanium has 16-inch aluminium alloy wheels and a chrome grille.

Inside, EcoSport offers a stylish, modern and well-equipped interior delivering new standards of craftsmanship and quality. The cabin – spacious for five people and their gear – has been engineered to deliver outstanding levels of comfort and quiet operation for customers.

In addition to Ford SYNC with voice control, among EcoSport’s available innovative technologies are Smart Keyless Entry, Ford Power Start, and a cooled bin in the glovebox.

EcoSport offers advanced safety items, such as dual front airbags and side curtain airbags, as well as Anti-Lock Brake System (ABS) and Electronic Stability Program.

To take the stress out of driving, the EcoSport comes with an array of driver-assist features including Hill Launch Assist and rear parking sensors.

Its agile, manoeuvrable chassis features electric power-assisted steering (EPAS) for outstanding steering response and improved fuel efficiency.

Beautiful, agile, modern

The new EcoSport is an affordable compact SUV that is ready for work and ready for play.

It targets benchmark performance in fuel economy, driveability and performance to redefine expectations in the compact SUV segment.

The new Ford SUV’s main characteristics were defined by consumers in all of the regions in which it will be sold. The design and flexible use are part of the new vehicle’s differentiated plan, which besides the agility and practicality for urban use, offers power and robustness for more adverse terrain.

The elevated stance and purposeful posture give the new EcoSport the appearance of a higher class vehicle. Its agile and contemporary lines convey confidence, refinement and an adventurous spirit, within a modern and smart package. All this contributes to EcoSport’s aspirational appeal.

"The new EcoSport is full of personality," said J Mays, group vice president, Design, and chief creative officer, Ford Motor Company. "Customers around the world immediately recognise its capability and SUV robustness that is achieved with aggressiveness. It is friendly and it’s a vehicle that really makes you smile.”

Powering growth in China

Reinforcing Ford’s commitment to offer a full portfolio of vehicles in China, the all-new Ford EcoSport will be the second of 15 new vehicles that Ford plans to introduce in the country by 2015. This is part of a bigger plan to bring more than 50 new vehicles and powertrains to the Asia Pacific and Africa region by mid-decade, underscoring the unprecedented expansion in the region.

“With its superior fuel efficiency and a comprehensive suite of smart technologies, the EcoSport is well-placed to power Ford into a new segment not only in China but also in other growth markets in Asia,” said Hinrichs.

Ford’s aggressive expansion plan in China is being supported by several new investments to increase production capacity.

It was announced earlier this month that Ford and its joint venture Changan Ford Mazda Automobile (CFMA) will invest approximately USD 600 million to expand capacity in Chongqing by 350,000 passenger vehicles, raising total capacity in China to 950,000 units by 2014. The new investment will increase Ford’s total investment in China to approximately USD 4.1 billion.

CFMA already operates two assembly plants and an engine plant in Chongqing. Additional facilities – a USD 500 million engine plant and a USD 350 million transmission plant – are currently under construction.

Posted 04-20-2012 at 01:23 PM by Comments 0
Originally Posted by ausrutherford View Post
1.6L EcoBoost comes later in the year
April 20, 2012

This morning, the EPA finally released official MPG figures for the 2013 Escape. Due to the 1.6L I-4 EcoBoost's late availability, only the 2.5L and 2.0L EcoBoost's ratings were released. All the power train configurations see improvements over their 2008-2012 counterparts, when you take into effect transmissions.

The 2.5L with an automatic, which carries over with improvements for the last model, sees an improvement to 22/31/25. For comparison, the last model with this engine, though with a manual, saw 23/28/25. The one particular troubling part is to why the city fuel economy went down. The loss of the manual is the reason for this since only an automatic is now offered. The automatic did improve however, but not enough to take over the Honda CR-V's. Should have Ford continued to offer a manual in the Escape due to people seeing the lower standard city MPG? We will have to see.

The big improvement is in the V6 replacement 2.0L I-4 EcoBoost. The outgoing 3.0L V6 saw 19/25/21. The new EcoBoost with fuel saving technology now sees 22/30/25 MPG. This is a huge improvement across the board and should help sales of V6 equivalent models perhaps until the 1.6L EcoBoost comes online. To us, it would be hard to justify not buying the 2.0L EB with similar fuel economy, but more power, to the 2.5L I4.

With sales suppose to start early next month, we finally see the fuel economy of the new 2013 Escape. Do you think it is enough of an improvement? Tell us in the comments.
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