Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2013 SEMA Show - Pink1 Project Truck - A.R.E. LSX Series





Jessica gives us a tour of her "Pink1" project truck that promotes breast cancer awareness. The truck features an A.R.E. LSX Series tonneau cover.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

FedEx Work Trucks

FedEx contractors sing praises of the Durashell 370 by Fleetwest Transferable Truck Bodies on a Ford pickup truck as a van alternative. A pickup truck provides 4x4 capability not available with the old work vans. The Durashell also has greater capacity than full size vans. Drivers enjoy easy access to cargo thanks to the stand-up height of the Durashell 370.



Durashell Vs. Van

  • The Durashell factory availability is 3 weeks or less while a new full-size transit van could take 4-10 months
  • Ownership costs for the Durashell are much less than a van because of lower maintenance costs and a 3+ pickup truck lifecycle
  • The residual value for pickup trucks are higher than a van. The Durashell service body provides the added benefit of transferability with no-holes drilled installation, making the resale value of both the pickup and service body higher
Call your Fleetwest representative toll free at 866-497-7200 to GET A QUOTE for the Durashell 370.


Friday, December 27, 2013

A New F150 Could Be Just the Begining for Ford

 

Yes, it sounds like the hugely important and highly profitable all-new Ford F-150 will debut at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, and it will create ripples that will be felt, no doubt, across the industry for years to come. To say this truck is important to Ford is almost laughable. And, you can bet, since other truck makers have significantly revised or completely redesigned their own pickups to better compete with half-ton Fords in the last several years, they will be watching very closely.

Add to the mix of this very important debut the fact that Ford is also bringing out a new Mustang for the 2015 model year, and you can see why there is so much interest both inside and outside the auto industry.

A next-generation F-150 that attacks the more challenging, staggered EPA fuel economy standards that come online in 2016, and then get bumped up again for 2025, will likely cost more to produce and certainly have a host of segment-leading technology and problem-solving features. We saw the Atlas concept earlier this year and, as much as Ford representatives want to deny it, from the interior and exterior spy shots we've seen so far, it looks like this new Ford will be more advanced than anything we've seen in the segment. No doubt this truck has taken a lot of money to develop, and could cost a big chunk of change more to produce. Those costs could be driven by the possible use of more expensive (but lightweight) materials.



It wouldn't surprise us one bit if Ford is hedging a few bets and spreading out this hefty development cost onto another, potentially smaller, pickup platform. Perhaps it would be adapted to North American tastes and requirements, remaking the global Ford Ranger that's so popular in Asia and Australia. It wouldn't take much for a clever and efficient small pickup to gobble up market share. Clearly, that's what GM is hoping much sooner in the timeline with the Colorado and Canyon. We thought it might be interesting to see what a new Ranger might look like (Can you see any Mustang in there?) and offer it for your enjoyment.

We've also included some sketches that Ford provided to us of some of the designs it was entertaining in the early stages of Atlas design, and this image of the tailgate storage box caught our eye. We were one of the few people who liked the Ford Explorer Sport Trac for its composite bed-hidden storage cubbies, but always thought the small bed storage drawer at the back of the bed was annoyingly inconvenient. This design makes more sense and is infinitely more practical than the Ram 1500 Sun Chaser's tailgate bench seat.

We'll see exactly what Ford has to offer us early on Jan. 13 during its press conference reveal, and we'll be right here delivering all we know and find out. More to come.


Ford Bullet


Ford Atlas tailgate



Ford Locomotive


From http://news.pickuptrucks.com/

Monday, December 23, 2013

2015 Transit

Ford’s all-new full-size 2015 Transit van will provide professional tradesmen and commercial fleet customers unmatched fuel economy, innovative new configurations and leading versatility in the expanding commercial vehicle market.



  •     All-new Transit van joins the nation’s best-selling lineup of commercial vehicles, giving Ford customers best-in-class fuel economy, the segment’s lowest cost of ownership, increased capability and Built Ford Tough durability
  •     The 2015 Ford Transit offers the broadest lineup of configurations for full-size van customers, available in more variations than the competition combined – three body lengths; two wheelbases; three roof heights; and in van, wagon, chassis cab and cutaway variations
  •     Ford Transit will achieve an average of 25 percent better fuel economy and haul at least 300 pounds more than today’s E-Series
The familiar van that delivers packages or shuttles you to the airport is about to change in a revolutionary way. Ford’s all-new full-size 2015 Transit van will provide professional tradesmen and commercial fleet customers unmatched fuel economy, innovative new configurations and leading versatility in the expanding commercial vehicle market.

With global commercial vehicle sales expected to grow by 4.8 million over the next several years to 21 million units annually by 2017, Transit represents a major opportunity.

Ford, the second-largest commercial vehicle manufacturer in the world and best-selling commercial vehicle brand in North America, is leveraging its One Ford product strategy to meet the needs of Transit customers on six different continents and in 116 markets with vans that are Built Ford Tough, more fuel efficient and even more capable.

Transit joins the most fuel-efficient lineup in Ford Motor Company’s history. This year Ford is offering seven vehicles rated at 40 mpg or higher – double 2011’s total, and more than any other automaker. Ford tops Toyota in fuel economy in every segment in which both companies compete.

Transit is born from a combined total of nearly a century of hard-earned experience delivering two distinct full-size vans to customers in North America, Europe and other global markets.

For North America, Transit will eventually replace the E-Series nameplate, first sold in 1961 as Ford Econoline and America’s best-selling commercial van for 33 years. In other global markets, this all-new vehicle will replace popular, market-specific Transit models first sold in 1965, and the best-selling commercial van in Europe.

Transit also is joined by the upgraded 2014 Ford Transit Connect, which pioneered the small van market in the United States and has been a hit with cost-conscious commercial fleets and small business proprietors.

Superior cargo hauling and people moving capabilities combined with best-in-class fuel economy were design imperatives for the all-new Transit range.

Transit will be offered in three body lengths; two wheelbases; three roof heights; van, wagon, chassis cab and cutaway bodystyles; and in XL and XLT trim levels.

Power of choice
“Transit is the new standard in full-size vans and customer choice,” said Len Deluca, director of Ford commercial vehicle operations. “We’re going from an exclusively gasoline engine lineup of two V8s and a V10 in E-Series to offering customers a standard 3.7-liter V6, the same 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine proven in Ford F-150 and an all-new 3.2-liter Power Stroke diesel option.”

Ford will offer Transit’s 3.7-liter V6 with a compressed natural gas/liquid propane gas (CNG/LPG) prep kit to assist customers running their vehicles with this abundant, affordable, clean fuel alternative. The 3.7-liter is engineered for optimal performance with E85 flex fuel.

The all-new 3.2-liter Power Stroke® five-cylinder common-rail turbo-diesel, based on Ford’s proven Duratorq global diesel engine architecture, features state-of-the-art fuel, turbo and emissions systems that meet stringent U.S. clean diesel standards, providing an ideal balance of fuel economy and job capability.

For maximum capability, the 3.5-liter EcoBoost® promises to be a trusted workhorse, whether carrying materials to the job site or towing a trailer with Transit’s available Class IV hitch.

Each engine is paired with a six-speed automatic transmission for efficient rear-wheel-drive operation.

Biggest range ever
For Transit, power of choice goes beyond powertrain options to encompass multiple lengths and roof heights to provide full-size van buyers with the precise combination and configuration they require.

The high-roof Transit features 81 inches of interior cargo height, enough headroom for a person standing six foot, five inches tall to stand upright in the cargo area. The medium roof can accommodate up to 72 inches of cargo height and the low roof has 56 inches of cargo height to provide an ideal combination of payload management, upfit readiness and garageability. Cargo volume ranges from 256 cubic feet to more than 550 cubic feet – nearly 75 percent more space than a Chevrolet Express.

Transit’s rear cargo doors open 270 degrees for easy rear cargo space access.

The interior of each Transit van features advanced, durable LED lighting and has been developed for easy upfit of racks, bins, shelving and other cargo storage and hauling solutions. The largest passenger version can carry up to 15 people.

Transit is available with a wide variety of comfort and convenience options. A 6.5-inch touch-screen display with navigation and SYNC® with MyFord Touch® – Ford’s highly acclaimed voice-activated communications and entertainment system – is also available.

Driving quality
The all-new Ford Transit was designed with improved handling, steering and ride qualities.

A power rack-and-pinion steering setup provides exceptionally communicative steering feel to the driver, serving as a confidence builder.

The front suspension consists of subframe-mounted MacPherson struts and a stabilizer bar for smoother, flatter cornering, combined with progressive rear leaf springs and heavy-duty gas-charged dampers for well-controlled ride quality – regardless of load status.

Minimized operating costs
Transit’s global design delivers on the same customer expectations in 116 markets worldwide where this sturdy commercial vehicle will be available, meeting such requirements as versatility, fuel efficiency and low operating costs.

Transit has been developed to be efficient to service and maintain, with specialized technical service support and extended operating hours available at more than 600 Ford Business Preferred Network dealers.

Designed and developed to provide efficient service over the long haul, Ford Transit scheduled maintenance costs for a three-year usage cycle are projected to be more than 30 percent less than a Chevrolet Express 1500 with the standard 4.3-liter V6, helping give Transit the segment’s lowest cost of ownership per cubic foot or pounds of cargo transported.

Built Ford Tough
The all-new Ford Transit has been engineered to deliver a severe-usage service life of 10 years and 150,000 miles. Transit features rugged unibody construction and extensive application of high-strength and boron steel that has been tested to the same standards as E-Series vans at Ford’s proving grounds and in the hands of real-world fleet customers in North America.

A durability program to deliver on Built Ford Tough customer requirements included 148 prototype vehicles, with a regimen of 215 separate tests to validate the long-haul functionality of various vehicle systems and hardware.

Cumulatively, Transit durability test vehicles were driven more than 4.6 million miles, or far enough to circle the globe 185 times.

The 2015 Ford Transit will be built at the recently upgraded Kansas City manufacturing facility.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Ford F-150/Super Duty Natural Gas Models



The Westport WiNG Power System is available in the popular Ford F-250 (right) and F-350 Super Duty pickup trucks (based on Ford’s new 6.2L hardened engine platform).


Ford Motor Company continues to expand its compressed natural gas (CNG) lineup of commercial vehicles. The fleet industry has taken notice and is adding these alternative-fueled workhorses to their fleets.


Pioneer Natural Resources is a large independent oil and gas exploration and production company located in Irving, Texas.


The company has added 225 bi-fuel, Westport WiNG natural gas powered Ford F-250 Super Duty trucks to its fleet, and has begun transitioning a number of its fleet vehicles from gasoline and diesel power to those able to run on more cost-effective CNG.

“Pioneer strives to lead by example with our commitment to natural gas vehicles and engines in our own operations,” said Jay Still, executive vice president of Domestic Operations at Pioneer. “Transitioning to natural gas for our fleet fuel is good economics, good for the environment, and good for American jobs.”


The fleet team at Pioneer has been driving the WiNG-powered Ford F-250 models since they became available.

Westport LD recently opened the Westport Kentucky Integration Center (WKIC) in Louisville where the natural gas WiNG power systems are installed on Ford F-250 and F-350 bi-fuel pickup trucks. With the ability to run on either natural gas or gasoline, the Ford trucks offer drivers more than 650 miles of range with two full tanks, and can take advantage of a low cost, domestic fuel, according to the automaker.


The vehicles are designed to meet both Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and California Air Resources Board (CARB) standards, and are available on the 4x2 or 4x4 configurations; 6.75 or 8 foot cargo box lengths; and Regular Cab, Super Cab, or Crew Cab variants.


Current qualified vehicle modifiers (QVMs) for CNG upfits on the F-Series Super Duty (F-250 and F-350 Chassis Cab) are Altech-Eco, BAF, IMPCO, Landi Renzo, Venchurs, and Westport.


The complete Ford F-Series lineup is now available with a CNG/LPG bi-fuel capability.


The 2014 Ford F-150 will offer a gaseous-fuel prep option on the 3.7L V-6 engine, able to run on CNG or liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) also known as propane autogas.

The 2014 Ford F-150 with 3.7L V-6 engine will be built with a factory-installed, gaseous-fuel prep package that includes hardened valves, valve seats, pistons, and rings so it can operate on either natural gas or gasoline through separate fuel systems.


When the 3.7L V-6 F-150 is equipped with a CNG/LPG engine package, it is capable of achieving more than 750 miles on one tank of natural gas, depending on the tank size selected. The Ford F-150 averages 23 mpg on the highway. 


From: http://www.greenfleetmagazine.com/

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Certification Testing in Los Angeles Highlights Ford Dominance in Police Sedan, Utility; All-Wheel Drive

  • Ford EcoBoost®-powered Police Interceptor sedan bests high-performance V8 sedans from two competitors in 0-100 mph testing and average lap times
  • New Ford EcoBoost Police Interceptor utility vehicle accelerates faster than all base V6 sedan competitors
  • Wins for both sedan and utility vehicle confirms advantages of company’s intelligent all-wheel drive on Ford Police Interceptor sales
For the third straight year in Los Angeles Sheriff Department tests, EcoBoost®- and all-wheel-drive-equipped Ford Police Interceptor sedan and utility vehicle were fastest both in 0-100 mph acceleration testing and average lap times at Fontana raceway in California.

While wins three years running is a point of pride for Police Interceptor sedan, the results of the utility vehicle tests are noteworthy, both for the industry and Ford, because Police Interceptor utility represents an increased percentage – now 60 percent – of Ford police vehicle sales.

“Not only do we remain faster, but agencies like the Los Angeles Sheriff Department see the benefits of all-wheel drive and EcoBoost,” said Arie Groeneveld, Ford chief engineer. “In pursuit driving conditions, being able to put down 365 horsepower is best accomplished using our intelligent all-wheel-drive system – which optimizes handling and traction in all driving conditions, including dry-pavement surfaces – as demonstrated in LASD testing.”

Two trends emerge
The performance achievement of Police Interceptor sedan and utility confirms two major shifts in police vehicle trends Ford is leading since its introduction last year of the all-new Police Interceptor family – the overwhelming preference by police agencies for Ford’s intelligent all-wheel-drive system, and a growing preference for the spacious utility vehicle.
Since launch, Ford Police Interceptor sedan and utility vehicle, which replaced the venerable Crown

Victoria, have seen significant sales increases – sedan sales are up 34 percent in calendar year 2013, while utility sales are up 142 percent.

Today, Ford Police Interceptor utility vehicle is only available with all-wheel drive, while 88 percent of Police Interceptor sedan volume is all-wheel drive (base 3.5-liter Ti-VCT sedan can be ordered with front-wheel drive, while the 3.5-liter EcoBoost-equipped version is standard all-wheel drive). Groeneveld said the LASD tests demonstrate police agencies don’t need to sacrifice performance for the added space and versatility a utility vehicle provides.

Beyond obvious traction advantages proven through all-wheel drive, evaluations like the LASD and Michigan State Police tests earlier this year demonstrate that Ford’s intelligent all-wheel drive enhances handling, especially in pursuit situations.

The Ford EcoBoost-powered Police Interceptor sedan bested both competitors’ high-performance V8 sedans in 0-100 mph testing.

Preliminary results of LASD testing show the fastest of the fast – the 2014 Ford Police Interceptor EcoBoost sedan with standard all-wheel drive – posted a 0-100 mph time of 14.2 seconds, compared to 15.2 seconds for the 5.7-liter Hemi-equipped Dodge Charger with optional all-wheel drive, and 14.4 seconds for the Chevrolet Caprice with 6.0-liter V8.

The LASD tests were conducted with the utility vehicles carrying 400 pounds of cargo to simulate real-world conditions. The all-wheel-drive-equipped 3.5-liter EcoBoost utility turned in a 0-60 mph time of 6.5 seconds and 0-100 mph time of 18.3 seconds. The Chevrolet Tahoe with 5.3-liter V8 returned an 8.5-second 0-60 mph time and a 0-100 mph time of 26.4 seconds. Even the base Ford Police Interceptor utility, equipped with a 3.7-liter V6 and all-wheel drive, beat the competition by posting a 7.9-second 0-60 mph time and 23.6 seconds in the 0-100 mph contest.

Not only did the Police Interceptor sedan and utility prove fastest in a straight line, both also posted fastest average lap times in their segments. The EcoBoost sedan (at 81.25 seconds) is 0.7 second faster per average lap than Chevrolet Caprice 6.0-liter V8 with rear-wheel drive (at 81.97 seconds), and 0.9 second faster per average lap than the all-wheel-drive-equipped Dodge Charger with Hemi V8 (82.19 seconds). Ford Police Interceptor utility with EcoBoost (85.58 seconds) is 6.1 seconds faster per average lap than Chevrolet Tahoe (at 91.71 seconds).

Ford Police Interceptor vehicles are gaining attention with agencies nationwide as a means of balancing law enforcement’s need for speed in pursuit-rated vehicles with the need to save money. Switching from traditional V8-equipped police vehicles to powerful but more efficient Ford EcoBoost V6 vehicles achieves this goal.

With Ford’s announcement in September of a new non-pursuit-rated, fuel-efficient 2.0-liter EcoBoost-equipped Special Service Police Sedan that achieves 30 mpg highway, the company now offers law enforcement agencies the power of choice when they want to optimize efficiency and power.

For more information on Ford Police Interceptor, visit www.FordPoliceInterceptor.com.

About Ford Motor Company

Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 180,000 employees and 65 plants worldwide, the company’s automotive brands include Ford and Lincoln. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford and its products worldwide, please visit corporate.ford.com.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

New Virtual Lab Improves Ford Global Vehicle Quality; Engineers and Designers Inspect 135,000 Details in 2013


    Ford is the first automaker to use a new ultrahigh-definition, virtual reality lab that enables designers and engineers globally to work together on vehicles in real time

    Virtual reality can be more effective than real-world design development; this year alone, Ford designers and engineers have verified more than 135,000 details on 193 virtual vehicle prototypes

    Thanks to Ford’s Immersion Lab, improvements were made in both design and function to the sleek, door-mounted sideview mirrors and ultrathin LED center brake light on the new Ford Fusion; likewise, the all-new Ford Mustang benefits from improved fit and finish of its dashboard and concealed windshield wipers

Ford Motor Company engineers all over the world are creating vehicles in a new way – together, in an ultrahigh-definition, virtual reality space. Simultaneous input from designers and engineers globally is helping to improve Ford vehicle quality ahead of the prototype stage in vehicle development.

Like a Second Life game – a popular online 3D virtual world – but with ultrahigh definition, engineers and designers at Ford now experience a car the way a consumer would in a showroom. Using a totally immersive virtual space allows them to create visuals almost indistinguishable from a real car, and results in improved vehicle quality and craftsmanship.

This more dynamic, precision-oriented work environment is already delivering improvements for the customer, as seen, for example, in specific features of the new Ford Fusion and all-new Ford Mustang.

For Fusion, determining sideview mirror placement allowed for engineers to deliver optimal visibility without impacting the design of the car. The position of the sideview mirrors went through several virtual iterations before it was determined that optimal placement was a door-mounted design, which enhances visibility. Engineers also found visibility was maximized without losing style with an ultrathin LED center brake light.

This new virtual, global technology was also applied to development of the all-new Ford Mustang. After viewing the car with virtual reality technology, craftsmanship engineers were able to change the fit and finish of Mustang’s dashboard and windshield wipers so that the wipers are hidden from the driver’s view when they are at rest. Eliminating exposed fasteners allowed the engineers to create a finished look and a richer perception of quality.

Ford is the first automaker to pioneer this technology globally, allowing engineers around the world to work together on the same product at the same time.

“We now have Ford designers and engineers around the world working together virtually – inside and side-by-side – on the same product,” said Elizabeth Baron, Ford virtual reality and advanced visualization technical specialist. “By using this technology, designers and engineers can quickly transition from one car design proposal to another, and they can study and identify which is the best option.”

Updating the future, becoming global
As the company grows its global lineup of vehicles, virtual technology will be key in helping to deliver improved vehicle quality and customer experiences with new Ford vehicles. So far this year, designers and engineers have checked more than 135,000 details on 193 virtual vehicle prototypes built in the Immersion Lab – a feat that would have been impossible a few years ago.

The addition of an ultrahigh-definition “powerwall” display screen to the Immersion Lab and other Ford facilities around the world is making this technology a global reality. The screen – four times the resolution of a high-definition television – enables Ford designers and engineers to evaluate and review 3D models of vehicles in real time globally.

Ford has virtual labs around the world. In addition to an Australia facility, collaboration centers in Germany, China, India and Brazil opened in 2012. A new collaboration center in Mexico is up and running as of this year.

“We moved to the global One Ford plan so that international collaboration could lead to the development of globally appealing vehicles,” said Baron. “With this technology, designers and engineers can enhance their ability to achieve that goal – while also improving vehicle quality.”

Thanks to the upgraded facilities and new software, engineers are able to study hundreds of elements inside and outside of a vehicle. This process ensures vehicles that come to market have been painstakingly inspected for usability, consistency and design effects that are now discernible in the sophisticated shadows and real-world lighting conditions the tools provide.

X-ray vision
Ford’s Immersion Lab not only allows workers to see full-scale 3D images, it also enables engineers and designers to see inside and through a vehicle structure to study how various structural, mechanical and electrical systems interact within the architecture.

“Our new technology is more refined, and allows us to see and understand complex engineering issues while considering aesthetics and design,” said Baron. “We are incorporating light and shadow calculations in real time, which adds more depth and authenticity.”

The Immersion Lab, which began in 2006, was instituted to allow Ford designers and engineers to test various styling, craftsmanship and ergonomic options to make improvements to new vehicle design without resorting to expensive and time-intensive physical models.

Ford is the industry leader in the field of melding state-of-the-art motion capture technology, high visual fidelity and immersive virtual reality tools. Using data derived from these tools, designers can improve such attributes as outward vehicle visibility, quality and comfort.

Upgrades to the Immersion Lab include:
  •    Virtual Space: With the new 4K-resolution “powerwall,” Ford engineers can have a life-sized view of issues that arise in vehicle development. Actual movement of designers and engineers connects with virtual movement, with the system linking Ford workers globally to simultaneously analyze and inspect the same virtual vehicle on a scale not possible before. The newest software provides a virtual experience almost indistinguishable from a real vehicle
  •     Programmable Vehicle Model: With upgraded software, engineers can now get immersed in a lifelike virtual vehicle. Evaluators can sit in the Programmable Vehicle Model – an interior laid out with steering wheel and seats – and both visualize and feel components. Engineers can test steering wheels, door handles and other major touch points for placement relative to the driver’s seat. Like the Virtual Space, the Programmable Vehicle Model has gotten upgraded collaborative capabilities. One Ford designer can be outside the car in the Virtual Space, while another is inside the car in the Programmable Vehicle Model
  •   Cave Automated Virtual Environment: CAVE functions as a wide, field-of-view virtual environment, allowing Ford engineers to rapidly test design and placement of door-mounted mirrors, center brake lights and other components to study visibility and customer preference
About Ford Motor Company

Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 180,000 employees and 65 plants worldwide, the company’s automotive brands include Ford and Lincoln. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford and its products worldwide, please visit corporate.ford.com.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Ford’s 3D-Printed Auto Parts Save Millions, Boost Quality

  •     Ford ushers in the next manufacturing revolution by 3D-printing parts to represent production components
  •     3D printing improves quality in Ford vehicles by providing engineers more time and freedom to optimize and test parts
  •     Ford’s 500,000th printed auto part is a prototype engine cover for the all-new Ford Mustang
  •     The next steps in Ford’s 3D printing strategy are auto industry firsts – mixed material applications, continuous 3D sand printing and direct metal printing
One day, millions of car parts could be printed as quickly as newspapers and as easily as pushing a button on the office copy machine, saving months of development time and millions of dollars.

3D printing technology is making that day come sooner at Ford Motor Company. The development of the engine cover for the all-new Ford Mustang is the most recent example of the use of this technology.

Ford uses 3D printing to quickly produce prototype parts, shaving months off the development time for individual components used in all of its vehicles, such as cylinder heads, intake manifolds and air vents.

With traditional methods, an engineer would create a computer model of an intake manifold – the most complicated engine part – and wait about four months for one prototype at a cost of $500,000. With 3D printing, Ford can print the same part in four days, including multiple iterations and with no tooling limits – at a cost of $3,000.

“For the customer, this means better quality products that also can be weight-optimized to help improve fuel efficiency,” explains Paul Susalla, Ford section supervisor of rapid manufacturing.

More creativity, faster prototypes
3D printing saves millions of dollars in the product development process by eliminating the need for special tooling, or dedicated molds, for parts likely to change. The technology also allows engineers to experiment with more radical, innovative part designs inexpensively and quickly.

Ford now is looking to what’s next in its 3D printing strategy, including opportunities to print production parts in metal, rather than just plastic, for prototypes.

“This technology provides immense return for Ford and the entire manufacturing industry,” said Bill Russo, global director, Ford powertrain manufacturing and engineering.

How it works
3D printing works by printing one thin layer at a time from plastic, sand or other material, then gradually stacking the layers and building a finished piece to create a 3D object, similar to assembling a spool of CDs.

“Today, 3D printing is not fast enough for the high-volume direct production manufacturing we do,” said Harold Sears, Ford additive manufacturing technical specialist. “But it is ideal for test parts, or niche production applications, that go through frequent development changes.”

Ford has been at the forefront of 3D printing for 25 years and was involved with the invention of 3D printing in the 1980s. In 1988, Ford purchased the third 3D printer ever made. Today, Ford uses selective laser sintering, fused deposition modeling and stereolithography 3D printing applications. Ford also works with suppliers to bring more technologies to market, including 3D sand printing.

Recent examples of Ford’s use of 3D sand printing include:
  •     Engine cover for all-new Ford Mustang
  •     Rotor supports, transmission cases, damper housings and end covers for new HF35 hybrid transmission for Ford C-MAX Hybrid, Fusion Hybrid
  •     Four-cylinder EcoBoost® engines for new Ford Fusion
  •     Brake rotors for Ford Explorer; the rotors were modified using 3D printing late in development to fix a brake noise discovered in durability testing, which could have delayed initial launch
  •     Exhaust manifolds for 3.5-liter EcoBoost in Ford F-150
“Many have referenced this technology as ushering in a third industrial revolution,” said Sears. “While that is yet to be determined, what we do know is manufacturing is continuing to go digital, the speed of these technologies is increasing and the variety of materials is expanding – all of which leads us to believe 3D printing presents a great opportunity for overall manufacturing.”

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Horsepower Unleashed – Motivating the All-New Ford Mustang

Visit our All-New Ford Mustang Collection for more
  • 5.0-liter V8 anchors the all-new Ford Mustang lineup with power and torque fit for the iconic brand
  • New 2.3-liter EcoBoost® brings turbocharging to Mustang with exceptional power and torque and projected class-leading fuel efficiency
  • Manual transmissions provide smoother shifting, automatic transmissions feature steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters
The all-new Ford Mustang offers a choice of engines available with either manual or automatic transmissions that make it a great all-around performer no matter how you mix and match.

Less is more, EcoBoost comes to Mustang
The new 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine brings turbocharging to the Mustang powertrain lineup. Designed to meet the needs of drivers looking for outstanding performance and projected best-in-class fuel efficiency, this EcoBoost engine has been developed specifically for Mustang. The intake manifold and turbocharger housing are optimized to provide better breathing and higher output in Mustang.

With a projected 305-plus horsepower and 300-plus lb.-ft. of torque, this EcoBoost engine fits the bill for a true Mustang powerplant.

“This EcoBoost engine delivers the healthy output that Mustang drivers expect regardless of the speed,” said Scott Makowksi, EcoBoost powertrain engineering manager. “This EcoBoost engine might be small in displacement, but it delivers where a Mustang driver expects it with a broad, flat torque curve and great driveability under any conditions.”

The newest member of Ford’s global family of EcoBoost engines, the 2.3-liter continues to take advantage of state-of-the-art technologies including direct fuel injection, twin independent variable camshaft timing and turbocharging to produce big-engine power and torque with improved fuel efficiency.

This is the first Ford engine to utilize a low-inertia twin-scroll turbocharger that provides quicker boost response while enabling lower emissions and improved efficiency. The cylinder head features an integrated exhaust manifold that separates the inner and outer pairs of cylinders into each inlet passage to the turbo.

Keeping the exhaust pulses separated from the next cylinder in the firing order eliminates mixing losses and maximizes pulse energy to the turbine wheel. The result is quicker torque delivery when the driver needs it for passing maneuvers and similar performance to a twin-turbocharger configuration.

The separated exhaust ports also enable the exhaust valves to stay open longer for reduced pumping losses that improve specific fuel consumption by about 1 percent.
With more than 305 horsepower and 300 lb.-ft. of torque pumped out from such a small engine, in a car where drivers are more inclined to use it, ensuring durability was critical. Enhancements to the Mustang EcoBoost engine to withstand the added stresses include:
  • Forged-steel crankshaft
  • Piston-cooling jets
  • Steel piston ring carriers
  • Premium bearing materials
  • Upgraded valve seat materials
  • Forged-steel connecting rods
  • High-pressure die-cast aluminum cylinder block with ladder-frame bearing caps
  • Deep-sump, die-cast aluminum oil pan
The beating heart of a pony
No Ford Mustang engine lineup would be complete without a great V8 engine at its core. The 5.0-liter V8 powers into a new generation with a host of upgrades that enable it to breathe better, especially at higher engine speeds. Many of these changes are derived from the lessons learned in developing the special edition 2013 Mustang Boss 302.
Getting air into the cylinders and exhaust out is the key to generating more power and torque from any engine, and that has been the focus of development on the V8, which features:
  • Larger intake valves
  • Larger exhaust valves
  • Revised intake camshafts
  • Revised exhaust camshafts
  • Stiffer valve springs – ensures that the valves close completely at high rpm
  • New cylinder-head casting – revised ports that provide a straighter path to the valves for less-restrictive intake and exhaust flow; combustion chamber modifications accommodate larger valves
  • Sinter forged connecting rods – lighter and more durable for high-rpm operation
  • Redesigned piston tops – deeper cutouts clear the new larger valves
  • Rebalanced forged crankshaft – supports higher-rpm operation
These upgrades are projected to generate more than 420 horsepower and 390 lb.-ft. of torque.
A new intake manifold includes charge motion control valves to partially close off port flow at lower engine speeds. This increases the air charge tumble and swirl for improved air-fuel mixing. This results in better fuel economy, idle stability and lower emissions.

The variable camshaft timing on the intake side now has a greater range of adjustment available thanks to mid-lock phasers. This enables better optimized control of the valve timing over a broader range of engine speeds and loads for improved fuel economy and emissions

Transmissions
More than most drivers, Mustang owners like to take control and shift for themselves. Whether they select a fully manual gearbox or the updated automatic transmission, the experience will be better than in any previous pony.

The Getrag manual has a new shift linkage design for shorter throws and improved precision. The shift lever is now positioned closer to the driver and away from the cup-holders so the driver has a clear path for shifting.

Mustang blends outstanding all-around performance and everyday usability. Drivers who prefer to let the car handle the shifting during their daily work run, but still want to take control when the roads get twisty, will appreciate the new steering-wheel-mounted shift paddles with rev-matching downshifts that are now standard with the Select-Shift six-speed automatic transmission.

The automatic also features a redesigned case with cast-in ribs that help make it stiffer and reduce the weight. Internally clutches have been optimized and operating temperature has been increased to reduce friction. The output shaft is now supported by a ball-bearing that enables a top speed of 155 mph for Mustang GT.

With a choice of powertrains to match driving styles and lifestyles, the new Mustang has contemporary technology under the hood to match its modern design and remain quintessentially Mustang.

About Ford Motor Company

Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 180,000 employees and 65 plants worldwide, the company’s automotive brands include Ford and Lincoln. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford and its products worldwide, please visit corporate.ford.com.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Ford Mustang Marks 50 Years with All-New Sleek Design, Innovative Technologies and World-Class Performance




Visit our All-New Ford Mustang Collection for more
  • All-new sophisticated design clearly inspired by 50 years of Mustang heritage evolved to attract wider array of customers and expand global market availability
  • Mustang now available with three engines offering a broader power of choice – a more powerful 5.0-liter V8, a 3.7-liter V6 and an all-new fuel-efficient 2.3-liter EcoBoost® engine
  • Mustang sets new performance and dynamics benchmarks for the brand with world-class handling, more precise steering control and enhanced ride comfort
The next chapter in the life of the iconic pony car begins today as the all-new Ford Mustang – loaded with innovative technologies and delivering world-class levels of performance – is simultaneously revealed around the globe in six cities on four continents.

“Ford Mustang inspires passion like no other car,” said Raj Nair, Ford group vice president, global product development. “The visceral look, sound and performance of Mustang resonates with people, even if they’ve never driven one. Mustang is definitely more than just a car – it is the heart and soul of Ford.”

Mustang’s impact goes well beyond the 9 million-plus cars sold in its 50 years of continuous production. It has made thousands of appearances in film, television, music and video games, and is the world’s most-liked vehicle on Facebook. For the first time ever, Ford will bring Mustang to customers in key parts of Europe and Asia.

“We crafted this car with the goal of creating a contemporary interpretation of Mustang – an American automotive icon that symbolizes optimism and freedom for millions of people around the world,” said Jim Farley, executive vice president of Ford global marketing, sales and service and Lincoln.

All-new shape, yet unmistakably Mustang
The clean-sheet design of both Mustang fastback and convertible evokes the essential character of the brand, retaining key design elements – including the long sculpted hood and short rear deck – with contemporary execution.

“You only get one chance to make a first impression, and when you see this car you immediately see a Mustang strong and true,” said Moray Callum, Ford executive director, design, The Americas.
Several key design features define the all-new Mustang, including:
  • A lower, wider stance with a reduction in roof height, and wider rear fenders and track
  • The return of Mustang fastback with a sleeker profile enabled by more steeply sloped windshield and rear glass
  • Three-dimensional, tri-bar taillamps with sequential turn signals
  • Contemporary execution of the signature shark-bite front fascia and trapezoidal grille
Mustang convertible drivers will appreciate the standard multilayer insulated cloth top that gives the car a more upscale appearance and a quieter cabin. The new top lowers twice as fast as before, and has a sleeker profile when folded for open-air motoring.

The information and controls an active driver needs are all readily accessible in the aviation-inspired cockpit, which is executed with the highest degree of craftsmanship ever found in a Mustang. Large, clear instrumentation puts vehicle information right in front of the driver in the roomier cabin, while improved ergonomics and tactile switches and knobs provide better control. The added width and a new rear suspension contribute to improved shoulder and hip room for passengers, and a more usefully shaped trunk can accommodate two golf bags.

The Mustang experience
The way Mustang looks, drives and sounds is key to the visceral experience that makes drivers just want to get in and hit the road. With more options to choose from, there is a Mustang to fit any lifestyle. The upgraded V6 and V8 are joined by an all-new 2.3-liter EcoBoost® engine that brings state-of-the-art technology to Mustang.

Mustang GT continues with the latest edition of the throaty 5.0-liter V8, now featuring an upgraded valvetrain and cylinder heads that yield more than 420 horsepower and 390 lb.-ft. of torque. A new intake manifold improves low-speed breathing for better fuel economy, idle stability and emissions.

“This EcoBoost engine delivers where a Mustang driver expects it to, with a broad, flat torque curve that pours out when you stand on it for easy passing or hustling down a twisty road,” said Dave Pericak, Ford Mustang chief engineer.

The Mustang EcoBoost engine uses direct injection, variable cam timing and turbocharging to deliver plenty of usable performance and projected segment-leading fuel efficiency. A unique intake manifold and turbocharger housing enable it to deliver the performance Mustang drivers expect with output projected at more than 305 horsepower and 300 lb.-ft. of torque.

With at least 300 horsepower and 270 lb.-ft. of torque on tap from the standard 3.7-liter V6, even the most accessible Mustang delivers the performance customers expect.

Drivers will appreciate smoother shifts from the updated manual gearbox, while a reworked automatic transmission features new steering wheel-mounted shift paddles for drivers who want the choice between convenience and control.

Most nimble pony ever
When life throws drivers a curve, the all-new Mustang sets new handling benchmarks for the brand, delivering world-class dynamics and ride quality.

“We already set a very high standard for Mustang’s dynamics with Boss 302, and our goal was to go above and beyond that with this new car,” said Pericak.

Mustang features all-new front and rear suspension systems. At the front, a new perimeter subframe helps to stiffen the structure while reducing mass, providing a better foundation for more predictable wheel control that benefits handling, steering and ride.

The new double-ball-joint front MacPherson strut system also enables the use of larger, more powerful brakes. This is expected to be the best stopping Mustang yet, with three available brake packages.

At the rear is an all-new integral-link independent rear suspension. The geometry, springs, dampers and bushings all have been specifically modified and tuned for this high-performance application. New aluminum rear knuckles help reduce unsprung mass for improved ride and handling.

Smarter than your average pony
The all-new Mustang features a significant amount of innovative technologies providing drivers with enhanced information, control and connectivity when they want it. From Intelligent Access with push-button start to SYNC® and MyKey® in every Mustang built, plus available Track Apps,
MyColor gauges and new Shaker Pro audio system, drivers will be able to customize their time behind the wheel.

The feeling of freedom and confidence Mustang instills in its drivers is amplified when they can take control of how the car behaves. On a twisty back road or a weekend track day, the driver can tap the toggle switches on the console to quickly adjust steering effort, engine response, and transmission and electronic stability control settings using the available Selectable Drive Modes to create the perfect Mustang at any time.

The advanced new Ford-developed stability control system is tuned to maximize Mustang’s dynamic capabilities. When the time comes to turn up the wick at the track, Mustang GT includes standard launch control that enables drivers to achieve smooth, consistent starts every time.

When it’s time to back off and relax for the drive home, available advanced driver-assist features including Blind Spot Information System with cross-traffic alert and adaptive cruise control can help ease the load, while SYNC AppLink lets drivers control their smartphone apps to listen to their favorite form of entertainment.

50 years of Mustang
April 17, 2014, marks the 50th anniversary of the introduction of the original Ford Mustang and each 2015 model celebrates the milestone with a badge on the instrument panel that includes the galloping pony logo and the words “Mustang – Since 1964.” Mustang will continue to be built in the United States at Flat Rock Assembly Plant.

“From day one, we knew if we were going to build a new Mustang, we had to do it right,” said Pericak. “We built a new Mustang from the ground up that is quicker, better-looking, more refined and more efficient, without losing any of the raw appeal that people have associated with Mustang for half a century.”


About Ford Motor Company

Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 180,000 employees and 65 plants worldwide, the company’s automotive brands include Ford and Lincoln. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford and its products worldwide, please visit corporate.ford.com.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Vandemonium Builds as MAKE Magazine and Ford Ask Voters to Choose Ultimate Do-It-Yourself Transit Connect

MAKE Magazine and Ford Ask Voters to Choose Ultimate Do-It-Yourself Transit Connect


  • Ford and MAKE magazine introduce the Ultimate Maker Vehicle Challenge, a competition to create the ultimate Ford Transit Connect Wagon
  • Through Dec. 12, the public can vote (http://bit.ly/17htfD8) for their favorite from among 10 vehicles designed by well-known makers challenged to create their ultimate Transit Connect
  • MAKE magazine will award $10,000 to the winner, $2,500 to the runner-up
Ford Motor Company and MAKE magazine are asking for the public’s help in deciding among 10 innovative proposals for a one-of-a-kind Ford Transit Connect Wagon as part of the Ultimate Maker Vehicle Challenge.

Voting, which began Nov. 18, is open until 11:59 p.m. PST, Dec. 12. The public will choose who wins the Ultimate Maker Vehicle Challenge, casting ballots via the contest’s website (http://bit.ly/17htfD8) for entries that take Ford Transit Connect into some very different and creative territories.

“Meeting an unmet need is key to making,” said Mike Senese, executive editor of MAKE magazine.
“The Ford Transit Connect Challenge is a great platform for our community to showcase their imagination and DIY skills.

“The versatility of Transit Connect opens up nearly limitless configuration options and uses,” he added, “and its uniqueness fits perfectly with the diverse interests of the members of the maker movement.”

From the Robot Ambulance that serves as a mobile toy robot factory for children to the Urban Photography Response Vehicle for the film and production industry, entrants were given a budget and specific design and build criteria. They also were encouraged to define their vision for the ultimate Transit Connect Wagon.

The grand prize winner will be given $10,000, and the runner-up will be awarded $2,500.
The public can vote once a day for as few or as many entries as they like. The contestants will be judged on overall design and customization, as well as maker spirit.

Ford Transit Connect first launched in North America in 2009, primarily as a commercial vehicle, and has been a smart choice for small business owners ever since. The compact van earned 2010 North American Truck of the Year honors, adding to its global reputation for durability and toughness that dates back to its debut in Europe in 2003.

The all-new 2014 Transit Connect van, which features class-leading configuration options, has been named International Van of the Year 2014. Its versatility has sparked the creativity of owners in what Ford has coined to be their moment of Vandemonium.

The 2014 Ford Transit Connect is offered in two distinct models – the traditional, hard-working, panel-side hauler cargo van; and an all-new wagon model, a stylish, spacious and fuel-efficient people mover. Transit Connect Wagon features sliding doors and flexible, fold-flat seating for up to seven.

The DIY challenge is part of Ford’s Makers and Movers campaign with MAKE magazine involving Transit Connect Wagon. As part of the campaign, owners have used their talents to customize the vehicle, and have been showcased in stories and videos on Makezine.com. The profiles show how Ford has manufactured a vehicle that can be modified for an individual’s tastes and passions.

Meet the makers of the Ultimate Maker Vehicle Challenge
  • Ben Light of New York has turned Transit Connect into the Robot Ambulance, a mobile toy robot fabrication lab for children
  • Game of Drones has created the LandLab Transit Connect, turning the vehicle into an all-terrain, modular base station for disaster relief, scientific research and living off the grid
  • Milwaukee Makerspace has given personalized styling to Transit Connect, turning it into a vehicle that can show off inventions or products created by members at special events
  • The Hackmobile, designed by members of Twin Cities Maker, is a Transit Connect designed around The Fabber, a three-axis CNC machine with multiple tool heads and build platforms that can be swapped out for various fabrication jobs
  • Jimmy Diresta, a self-proclaimed hunter-gatherer in New York, created a Transit Connect that allows him to bring any tool he needs into the field to repair or dismantle objects
  • Transit Connect Disaster Relief Vehicle, a collaboration between Fixers Collective, MakerBar and Xtreme Heat, is designed to provide sustained relief to disaster areas with warm food, clean water, shelter and communication devices
  • Video Sans-Video Game Transit Connect by Michael Newman turns the vehicle into a giant video game without the video, with players side-scrolling their way through hand-drawn game levels
  • The Transit Connect designed by Gerald Beranek is intended to be the ultimate mobile tool box, with a large storage system, as well as mechanical and electrical hardware
  • The MakeIt Labs Transit Connect is designed to deploy a compact but functional workshop at the push of a button
  • The Urban Photography Response Vehicle is designed by Mike and Pat Murray to be the ultimate Transit Connect for the film and production industry, with the space and tools needed for shooting video and photography
For more information about Ford Transit Connect Wagon, or the cargo van, including pricing, visit www.ford.com/2014tcbuild&price.

About MAKER MEDIA

Maker Media is a global platform for makers, connecting them with each other, and providing them with valuable resources, products and services. Through media, events and ecommerce, Maker Media serves a growing maker movement that is global in scope. Whether as hobbyists or professionals, makers are creative, resourceful and curious, developing projects that demonstrate new ways of interacting with the world around them. The launch of MAKE magazine in 2005, followed by Maker Faire in 2006, jumpstarted a worldwide Maker Movement, which is transforming innovation, culture and education. Maker Media also develops “getting started” kits and books that are sold in its Maker Shed store as well as in retail channels. Maker Media spun out of O’Reilly Media on January 1st, 2013 and received venture funding from O’Reilly AlphaTech Partners, Floodgate Partners and Collaborative Fund. The company is located in Sebastopol, CA.

About Ford Motor Company

Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 180,000 employees and 65 plants worldwide, the company’s automotive brands include Ford and Lincoln. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford and its products worldwide, please visit corporate.ford.com.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

PG&E Receives New Electrified Vehicles

EVI Ford F-550,s Delivered 



The West Coast Utility’s Fundamental Goal Is to Reduce Its Fuel Use. The Ford F-550 modified for plug-in hybrid electric operation for PG&E by EVI,  Electric Vehicles International,Stockton, Calif.

PG&E showed the vehicles at an event preceding the San Francisco International Auto Show, which opened on Thanksgiving Day. The first of the Ford F-550-based EVI F-550 plug-ins will have 50 kilowatts of exportable power, to be boosted to 120 kilowatts, EVI said.


Extracted from http://www.fleetsandfuels.com, find the complete article at http://www.fleetsandfuels.com/fleet-order/2013/12/pge-receives-new-electrified-vehicles/

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Ford F-150 EcoBoost takes on Nissan, Chevy & the Ike Gauntlet 2.0 Mega Tow Test (Episode 2)



What half ton pickup truck is the towing king of the world? This time we've upped the ante and we go all in with 10,000 pounds of pain. Is it the Ford F-150 or the Nissan Titan or the new Chevy Silverado 6.2L. Today on The Fast Lane Truck we put these three of these trucks to the test as they take on the Ike Gauntlet 2.0.

In Episode 2 we test the returning champion.....The Ford F-150 EcoBoost

The Ike Gauntlet is a timed run up one of America's steepest highways from 9,000 feet above sea level to the top of the mountain at entrance to the Eisenhower Tunnel in Colorado. Check out this promo for what's coming up soon on The Fast Lane Truck.

https://www.facebook.com/TFLtruck