Thursday, June 18, 2015

Ford Bronco

The Ford Bronco is a utility vehicle that was produced from 1966 to 1996, with five distinct generations. All these vehicles are currently classified as sport utility vehicles (SUV). Broncos can be divided into two categories: early Broncos (1966–77) and full-size Broncos (1978–96).

The Bronco was introduced in 1966 as a competitor to the small four-wheel-drive compact SUVs that included the Jeep CJ-5 and International Harvester Scout, and it was built on its own platform.[2] A major redesign in 1978 moved the Bronco to a larger size, using a shortened Ford F-Series truck chassis to compete with both the similarly adapted Chevy K5 Blazer, as well as the Dodge Ramcharger.

The full-size Broncos and the successor Expedition were produced at Ford's Michigan Truck Plant in Wayne, Michigan.

The Bronco permanently entered American popular culture on June 17, 1994, when a white 1992 model owned and driven by Al Cowlings with O. J. Simpson, who was wanted for the murders of his ex-wife and her friend, attempted to elude the Los Angeles Police Department in a low-speed chase, which was nationally televised and viewed by millions nationwide.

1980–1986 Third generation

Production 1980–1986
Body and chassis
Body style Full-size SUV
Engine 300 cu in (4.9 L) Straight-6
 302 cu in (4.95 L) 302 V8
 351 cu in (5.75 L) 351M V8
 351 cu in (5.75 L) Windsor V8
Transmission 4-speed Borg-Warner T-18 manual
 4-speed New Process NP435 manual
 4-speed Tremec RTS OverDrive
 3-speed C6 automatic
 4-speed AOD
Wheelbase 104 in (2,642 mm)
Length 180.4 in (4,582 mm)
Width 79.3 in (2,014 mm)
Height 75.5 in (1,918 mm)

The Bronco received a major redesign in 1979 for the 1980 model year, coinciding with the F-Series. The new Bronco was shorter, and had cosmetic changes along with powertrain, suspension and other odds and ends. Most notably, the live front axle was replaced by a Dana 44 Twin Traction Beam (TTB) setup in the front end for an independent front suspension. The TTB is a hybrid of a true independent front suspension and a solid front axle, with a "solid" axle that pivots around the differential and uses coil springs instead of leaf springs. The TTB system offered a higher degree of control and comfort both on and off road, but sacrificed wheel travel, and is notorious for being difficult to keep aligned when larger than stock tires are used.

With a smaller Bronco and fuel economy in mind, Ford offered a 300 cu in (4.9 L) straight six as the base engine. Though this engine came with more torque than the 302 cu in (4.95 L) V8 and comparable to the 351 cu in (5.75 L) V8 (until the High Output model), it was limited by a 1-bbl carburetor and restrictive single-out exhaust manifolds. Electronic emissions equipment added in 1983 (1984 model year) further reduced the power of the inline six. Ford used up their remaining stock of 351M engines before turning over to the 351W in mid-model year 1982. A "High Output" version of the 351W became an option in 1983 on 1984 models and continued well into the 1987 model year until the introduction of fuel injection. Output was 210 hp (157 kW) at 4000 rpm vs the standard 2-bbl 351W which made 156 hp (116 kW) at 4000 rpm.[13] The 302 was the first engine to receive electronic fuel-injection, starting in the 1985 model year, as well as a four-speed automatic overdrive transmission. The Eddie Bauer trim package started in 1984 as well. From 1979 to 1984, some Broncos had sliding topper windows.

Cosmetically, Ford returned to their use of the "blue oval" logo on the front of a slightly redesigned grille, and removed the "F O R D" letters from the hood in 1982. Power Low Mount Swing Lock mirrors were first offered in 1980 on 1981 models. Classic square mirrors and the optional power low mount swing lock mirrors were discontinued for 1986.

Saturday, June 6, 2015

2015 Ford Edge Review First Drive

Ford’s first foray into the mid-size crossover market took place in 2006 when they introduced the Edge.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Ford Fusion specs

Exterior MeasurementsWIDTH
6 ft. 0.9 in. (72.9 in.) HEIGHT
4 ft. 10.2 in. (58.2 in.)
15 ft. 11.8 in. (191.8 in.) WHEEL BASE
9 ft. 4.2 in. (112.2 in.)

Interior MeasurementsFRONT HEAD ROOM
 39.2 in. FRONT HIP ROOM
 55.0 in.
 57.8 in.
 54.4 in. REAR HEAD ROOM
 37.8 in.
 56.9 in.

 Regular unleaded
 363.0/561.0 mi.
 22/34 mpg

Weights and CapacitiesEPA INTERIOR VOLUME
 118.8 cu.ft. CURB WEIGHT
 3431 lbs.
 16.0 cu.ft.

 Front wheel drive TRANSMISSION
 6-speed shiftable automatic

Engine & PerformanceBASE ENGINE SIZE
 Double overhead cam (DOHC)
 Inline 4 VALVES
 Variable TORQUE
 175 ft-lbs. @ 4500 rpm
 175 hp @ 6000 rpm

SuspensionFour-wheel independent suspension Front and rear stabilizer bar

 3 yr./ 36000 mi. DRIVETRAIN
 5 yr./ 60000 mi.
 5 yr./ 60000 mi.

Interior Features
Front Seats6 -way power passenger seat 8 -way power driver seat
Driver seat with power adjustable lumbar support Height adjustable driver seat
Height adjustable passenger seat Cloth
Bucket front seats

Rear SeatsSplit-folding rear seatback Folding center armrest
Rear ventilation ducts

Power FeaturesDigital keypad power door locks 4 one-touch power windows

InstrumentationClock Tachometer
Trip computer External temperature display

ConvenienceCruise control Front and rear cupholders
Front and rear door pockets Overhead console with storage
Front seatback storage Electric power steering
Tilt and telescopic steering wheel Audio and cruise controls on steering wheel
Rear view camera
Destination guidance (also Turn-by-Turn Navigation)* Destination Download*

ComfortInterior air filtration Air conditioning
Turn signal in mirrors Dual illuminating vanity mirrors

Memorized settings1 driver

In Car EntertainmentMast antenna 6 total speakers
AM/FM stereo Satellite radio satellite radio
Speed sensitive volume control Auxiliary audio input and USB with external media control
6 Months of provided satellite radio service Radio data system
USB connection

TelematicsBluetooth wireless data link for hands-free phone

 * SYNC is offered through a subscription based service or requires a compatible mobile device.
Exterior Features
Roof and GlassIntermittent wipers Rear defogger

Tires and WheelsAlloy wheels 17 in. wheels
235/50R17 tires Null tires
Inside mounted spare tire Temporary spare tire

Safety Features4-wheel ABS Front and rear head airbags
Dual front side-mounted airbags Child seat anchors
Remote anti-theft alarm system Emergency braking assist
Ventilated front disc / solid rear disc brakes Rear door child safety locks
Daytime running lights Engine immobilizer
Auto delay off headlamps Dusk sensing headlamps
2 front headrests 3 rear headrests
Passenger airbag occupant sensing deactivation Rear center 3-point belt
Turn signal mirrors Stability control
Traction control Rear height adjustable headrests
Post-collision safety system Tire pressure monitoring
Airbag Deployment Notification*
Reverse Sensing System Adaptive Cruise Control w/Collision Mitigation and Brake Support
Active Park Assist w/Forward Sensing System Rear Inflatable Seat Belts

Ford Fusion

The Ford Fusion continues to be a favorite of ours among the many mid-size sedans, with a stylish design and enjoyable driving dynamics. It’s a better driver’s car than the current Honda Accord, Toyota Camry, and Chevrolet Malibu. It has more drivetrain options than its competitors, too, including a plug-in hybrid, a trio of four-cylinders—two of them turbocharged—and a conventional hybrid option.

Other competitors in the wide-ranging mid-size sedan category include the Mazda 6, Nissan Altima, Hyundai Sonata, Kia Optima, and Subaru Legacy. The Mazda is easily the most rewarding to drive in this bunch, but it doesn't offer quite the variety in powertrains and options as the Ford.

(The Fusion Hybrid, and its plug-in hybrid Energi variant, are covered separately.)

The Fusion is related to the Lincoln MKZ, which was also revamped for the 2013 model year with a more distinctive design. In the past, the Fusion architecture also spawned the Mercury Milan, which was discontinued along with its namesake division in 2011. Early Mazda 6 models were also related, but that car is now built on an unrelated architecture and is assembled by Mazda in Japan.

For prices, specifications, and safety information, read our 2015 Ford Fusion review--and our 2015 Ford Fusion Hybrid page. You can also compare the Ford Fusion to its competitors.

In 2006, the first Fusion set a new look for Ford with a very prominent three-bar chrome grille and upright headlights leading to a more conventional look otherwise. Though the look was bold for the time, it aged well and still looked fresh several years later at the end of that model's run. That early Fusion also earned excellent reliability ratings (including the all-important approval of Consumer Reports); it has also gained kudos for quality from many other sources, and has held its resale value far better than the previous Taurus did.

Another reason the first Fusion resonated so much better with shoppers than previous models like the Taurus is that, quite simply, it was fun to drive. Likely, that's because it was built on some of the same underpinnings as the previous-generation (pre-2009) Mazda 6, another vehicle lauded for its sport-sedan handling. Not counting pricier European luxury makes, the first-generation Fusion was quite possibly the best-handling mid-size four-door sedan available in the U.S. during its run on the market.

The base 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine offered from 2006 through 2009 was only adequate with the automatic transmission but felt considerably peppier with the standard manual gearbox—a combination that proved hard to find in some areas. The V-6 didn't stand out for its performance numbers—it only made 240 horsepower—but it felt strong in the Fusion and the six-speed automatic transmission worked especially well with it.

For 2010, the 2.3-liter engine was replaced with a 2.5-liter that wasn't much more powerful but was considerably less noisy when pressed to perform. And the Fusion finally got Ford's larger, 3.5-liter V-6, making up to 263 horsepower. From 2007 on, all-wheel drive was been offered on the Fusion, but it was only available with the V-6 at first, and had slightly lower power ratings than front-wheel-drive models. All Fusions received a heavy face lift for the 2010 model year, as well.

The first-generation Fusion had a comfortable ride and a roomy interior, but for its first several years, up through 2009, it could feel a little drab inside. A redesigned instrument panel and new seats, along with some improved materials, brightened up the feel of the Fusion for 2010. Ford also stepped up the safety features for 2010; options included a Blind Spot Information System with Cross Traffic Alert.

The only common complaint with the 2006–2009 Fusions was that they didn't return the fuel economy of most mid-size rivals—most of which were slightly larger and had slightly larger engines. Despite the improvements for 2010, fuel-economy figures didn't become much better.

Ford remedied that for 2010, with the introduction of the Ford Fusion Hybrid, a model that paired a version of the 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine with an electric motor system. The Fusion Hybrid was able to run on electric power at up to 47 mph and achieved an outstanding EPA city rating of 41 mpg. Changes were minimal from then on, until the Fusion was replaced for 2013.

The new Ford Fusion

The Fusion was entirely redesigned for 2013, in stunning fashion. The Fusion was named The Car Connection's Best Car To Buy 2013, for its sleek, elegant good looks; refined performance; and fuel-efficient EcoBoost turbo powertrains. The Fusion has a premium-car feel and an impressive feature set.

The latest Fusion wears an entirely new design language that owes much to the themes seen on the Ford Focus. It's a sophisticated look, with some cues that echo details on everything from newer Hyundais to the latest Aston Martins and Audis. The cockpit design is formatted around MyFord Touch, the touchscreen-driven controller of phone, navigation, climate and audio systems--though it's an option, not standard.

Engines on the 2013 Fusion included a base 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine with 175 horsepower; a turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder with direct injection, 178 horsepower, and an estimated highway gas mileage rating of 37 mpg; and a 2.0-liter turbo four shared with vehicles from the Taurus sedan and Edge crossover to the hot Focus ST hatchback. Worth 240 hp, the biggest engine came only with a six-speed, paddle-shifted automatic, while the 1.6-liter was offered with a six-speed automatic or a six-speed manual, and the base engine, only the automatic. All but the 1.6-liter have carried into the current Fusion's third year on the market.

While most Fusions make do with front-wheel drive, the top Titanium offers the option of all-wheel drive when paired with the 2.0-liter EcoBoost engine. The 2.0 almost needs the extra traction to put its potent power down. All Fusions use an independent suspension design that provides confident, and even sporty, handling. It's fun to hustle and also handles long cruises with comfort. The Fusion also has good interior packaging for a family sedan, with a good balance of front- and rear-seat room.

When this generation was introduced, it offered a strong list of standard and available features. Those include Bluetooth with audio streaming standard, available leather upholstery, a backup camera, and even park assist, which uses sensors and the electric power steering to put the car in tight spots with the driver only operating the brake and throttle.

In the 2014 Fusion, Ford introduced a new 1.5-liter four-cylinder EcoBoost engine that returned almost the same performance as the 1.6-liter turbo four but with better fuel economy. It comes paired only to the six-speed automatic and also features an engine stop/start system to conserve fuel. The 2014 Fusion also made the inflatable rear seatbelt system that was originally offered in the Explorer available on the Fusion, and Ford added cooled front seats and a heated steering wheel to the sedan's options list as well.

For the 2015 model year, Ford quietly dropped the manual transmission and its requisite 1.6-liter turbo four from the Fusion lineup. The Fusion's other great features remain: enduring styling, very good handling, and excellent crash-test scores from both the IIHS and the NHTSA.

An update to the second-generation Fusion is expected soon. Changes will likely include updated styling inside and out, added active-safety features, and the new Sync 3 infotainment system. Powertrain updates are also possible, although Ford tends to phase those in year by year instead of waiting for a refresh or full redesign.
Used Ford Fusion Models
 With the Fusion, Ford effectively replaced the Taurus mid-size sedan with a more compact, better-handling car. The 2013 model is gorgeously curved, but 2012 and older versions have a handsome look, very good interior space and a good reliability record. The four-cylinders are adequate, basic transportation; we're big fans of the hybrid models from the first-generation Fusion lineup, since in our hands they regularly hit their 36-mpg EPA highway gas mileage ratings.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

CNET On Cars - New Ford GT: The Unbearable Lightness of Moving

The 2017 Ford GT is so underweight it's over the top. Plus, crash-proof cars are coming to an intersection near you, and when is a used car too used?

Monday, June 1, 2015

2015 Ford Fusion 1.5L EcoBoost 0-60 MPH Review

The 2015 Ford Fusion with the tiny 1.5L EcoBoost engine is a very rare car. It's a mid-sized family sedan with a very small displacement engine. So can this 2015 Ford Fusion be both fuel efficient and fast. Join Nathan behind the driver's seat as he finds out in this TFLcar Test Track video.

Ford Focus 2015 review

The Ford Focus is one of the UK's most popular cars, but does the latest model have what it takes to beat the VW Golf? Rebecca Jackson decides.