Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Confused About Car Technology? Read This

Stability Control: Mandatory in 2010, Do You Know What It Means?
by Hannah Elliott |

Motown Shutdown Car Makers Count On China Yes, New Auto Plants Will Be Built Hail The World's New Car King Do you know the difference between a supercharger and a turbocharger? Should you care?

Yes. A little auto expertise comes in handy when you want to impress your friends--or let a power-tripping mechanic know he can't jerk you around.

Here's our list of some of the most confusing car technologies and terms. From knowing your way around semi-automatic transmissions to understanding the difference between a mild hybrid and a dedicated hybrid, these factoids are essential knowledge for anyone who owns a car.

In Pictures: 10 Car Technology Terms Explained

Super Savers

President Obama's recent announcement about fuel efficiency and emissions standards has automakers talking about how turbochargers and diesel engines will lead the way to achieving a fleet-wide 35.5 mile-per-gallon requirement. But few people know just what makes turbochargers, or turbo-superchargers, as they're more accurately called, so essential to raw speed.

In short, turbochargers give cars extra guts. They use the engine's heat to compress ambient air and push it to the intake manifold. That additional oxygen enables the engine to take in more fuel, creating a combustive boost of power.

About one in four vehicles worldwide, including BMW's X6, Jaguar's XF and Porsche's 911 Turbo, use turbo-boost technology to achieve maximum power. By 2013, experts predict it will be closer to one in three.

David Paja, vice president of marketing for passenger vehicles at Honeywell, a manufacturer of automotive turbochargers, says they can be cost-effectively applied to hybrid, diesel and gasoline engines alike.

"It's a very natural technology tool to draw out fuel consumption in a transparent way for the customer, without any performance trade-off or reliability trade-off," Paja says.

He expects market penetration of turbo engines in the U.S. to grow from today's 6% to nearly 80% by the end of the next decade.

Switching Gears

Unlike the turbocharger, the proprietary names and multiple varieties of semi-automatic gearboxes can confuse even avid drivers. In general, semi-automatic gearboxes work like regular automatic transmissions, but they also have a mode that allows drivers to choose when to change gears, instead of letting the computer do it. For instance, with Porsche's patented tiptronic transmission, BMW's steptronic system or Aston Martin's touchtronic, drivers shift by bumping a knob near the stick shifter up or down, or by pushing a paddle on the steering wheel.

Porsche first introduced tiptronic technology in 1990 as an option in its 911. The technology has since become prevalent with brands like Audi, BMW, Chrysler, Honda and Nissan, although each make has registered it under a different name. This option appeals most to people who want a more engaging drive experience but don't want to be bothered with working a clutch.

Porsche also uses a similar doppelkupplung (German for double clutch), or PDK, technology. Audi's R8, BMW's M3, and Nissan's GT-R all use the system, as do several high-performance models in Europe.

The double-clutch transmission, a small, lightweight system that uses two internal clutches but no clutch pedal, was developed to win races on the track. It appeals to driving enthusiasts worldwide because of its incredible ease of speed and efficiency, says Porsche spokesman Dave Engleman.

It works by using electronic sensors to change gears, much like a standard automatic transmission. One clutch controls the odd gears, the other, the even gears. That duality means the driver can move a gear up or down without interrupting engine power, allowing seamless acceleration.

Safety Patrol

Safety features pose another threat to automotive know-how, and that confusion can lead to misuse or mistrust. For instance, professional drive instructors say many drivers often fail to take full advantage of the anti-lock braking system (ABS) in their car--or they mistake its signature rumble for a brake problem.

ABS works by preventing a vehicle's wheels from locking in the case of a slip. The most basic ABS uses speed sensors and hydraulics that monitor the speed of each wheel. When it detects that one wheel is turning either faster or slower than the others (which means the wheel is slipping or over-spinning), it reduces or increases brake force as needed. ABS adjusts continuously, which is why the brake pedal will rumble or pulse when the system is engaged.

The ABS system is a proven winner. It can decrease stopping distances on loose gravel by an average of 22%, according to the National Highway Safety Administration. A sister technology, electronic stability control (ESC), reduces the risk of single-vehicle crashes by about 35% for cars and dramatically more, 67%, for SUVs, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).

ESC is more advanced than ABS. It works by sensing when a car might slip and then applying constant brake pressure to individual tires. David Zuby, senior vice president for vehicle research at IIHS, says the institute finds ESC so effective that it will not award its "top safety pick" distinction to any vehicle that does not offer it.

In Pictures: Car Technology Close Up

It's a comforting thought, especially once you understand the system. Now get out there and impress your friends with what you know.

Semi-Automatic Transmission

What it is: A type of automatic transmission that allows the driver to decide when to shift gears. Porsche was one of the earliest companies to offer this feature, its "tiptronic" transmission, on mainline-production cars in the U.S. BMW calls its half-manual transmission "steptronic"; Aston Martin calls it "touchtronic."

What it does: When this type of transmission is engaged, the driver decides when to shift, which he or she does by pushing the stick (or buttons on the steering wheel) either up or down, instead of letting the car do it automatically.

Cars that have it: Multiple models from Audi, BMW, Land Rover, Nissan, Porsche and Volkswagen, including the Audi A4, Land Rover Ranger Rover and Porsche 911.

Read on for more lists, rankings and autos coverage, including the cars you'll be driving in 2014 and why diesels aren't like they used to be.

Diesel Engine

What it is: A combustion engine that has no spark plugs and runs on diesel fuel.

What it does: Diesel engines compress air at twice the ratio of a gas engine and direct fuel straight into the combustion chamber, rather than using a throttle to regulate airflow. That makes for more power under low RPMs and a higher overall efficiency.

Cars that have it: Lots in Europe and some in the U.S., including the Audi Q7 TDI, BMW BMW X5 xDrive35d, Mercedes GL 320 BlueTec and Volkswagen Jetta TDI.

Read on for more lists, rankings and autos coverage, including the cars you'll be driving in 2014 and why diesels aren't like they used to be.


What it is: A gas compressor that creates more engine power.

What it does: Turbochargers work by using heat from the engine to compress ambient air and push the denser air to the intake manifold. The additional oxygen makes it possible for the engine to accept more fuel, which translates into more power.

Cars that have it: Lots of them, and not just sports cars. Ford is pushing its new turbo technology for models like the Ford Flex, Lincoln MKX and Ford Taurus. Its "ecoboost" uses turbochargers that enable smaller engines to achieve the same power as larger variants, so a V6 acts like a V8.

Read on for more lists, rankings and autos coverage, including the cars you'll be driving in 2014 and why diesels aren't like they used to be.

Electronic Stability Control

What it is: A computerized system that stops cars from sliding out of control.

What it does: The system applies brake pressure to individual tires (rather than two or four at once) if it feels the car start to slip. It prevents over-steering and under-steering by stopping the outer front or inner rear wheel, respectively.

Cars that have it: Every new car made after model year 2009, as mandated by the U.S. government.

Read on for more lists, rankings and autos coverage, including the cars you'll be driving in 2014 and why diesels aren't like they used to be.

Mild Hybrid; Dedicated Hybrid

What it is: The term "mild hybrid" refers to a conventional vehicle that, thanks to a special starter, turns off when the car brakes, coasts or stops, and then seamlessly restarts. Mild hybrids get many of the benefits of a full hybrid but weigh less and cost less to implement. A "dedicated hybrid" is a car that was designed only as a hybrid (not one that was converted to a hybrid model after its conventional debut).

What it does: In a mild hybrid, the electric motor or generator operates at the same time as the engine and stores energy through regenerative braking and during stops and coasting. (Regenerative brakes store the energy generated by a car's movement rather than dissipating it as heat, like a conventional brake would.) Dedicated hybrids use both a gasoline engine and an electric or battery-powered motor but use them one after the other, not at the same time.

Cars that have it: The Saturn Vue Hybrid and Chevrolet Malibu use mild hybrid technology; the Toyota Prius and Honda Insight are dedicated hybrids.

Read on for more lists, rankings and autos coverage, including the cars you'll be driving in 2014 and why diesels aren't like they used to be.


What it is: The ABS, or anti-lock braking system, is a system that does just what it says. It prevents the wheels from locking during braking.

What it does: The most basic ABS uses speed sensors and hydraulics that monitor the speed of each wheel. When it detects that a wheel is turning either faster or slower than the others, it reduces or increases brake force as needed. ABS adjusts continuously, which is why drivers feel the brakes rumble or pulse when the system is engaged.

Cars that have it: More than two-thirds of all new vehicles manufactured worldwide.

Read on for more lists, rankings and autos coverage, including the cars you'll be driving in 2014 and why diesels aren't like they used to be.


What it is: A machine that compresses air in a forced-induction compression engine. The increased mass of air that a supercharger creates means more fuel can be provided to the engine, which creates more power. (A supercharger driven by the exhaust gasses from a turbine is called a turbo-supercharger, or turbocharger for short; simple superchargers, on the other hand, are driven directly mechanically by the engine's crankshaft).

What it does: Regular engines use pistons that move up and down to create a vacuum, which is then filled with air and combined with fuel to create combustion. Superchargers do the same without using a vacuum, which means they can force about 50% more air into the engine and create roughly 45% more horsepower and 30% more torque.

Cars that have it: The 2009 Jaguar XF, 2010 Audi S4 and any number of souped-up muscle cars.


What it is: Twisting force. When measured in foot-pounds, it’s the pounds of tug a rotating shaft delivers at a distance of one foot from its center. A gearbox can be used to change the torque coming out of an engine. When you downshift, you increase the torque and lower the RPMs delivered to the wheels. Diesel engines are known for their high levels of torque.

What it does: Torque is one of the two factors that determine the horsepower of an engine, the other being RPMs. To calculate hp, multiply torque in foot-pounds by rotating speed in RPMs, then divide by 5252.

Ford Popular


Ford Motor Company



Body style(s):

two door saloon

The Ford Popular is best known as a car from Ford built in England between 1953 and 1962. When launched, it was Britain's lowest priced car.

The name Popular was also used by Ford to describe its 1930s Y Type model. The Popular name was also later used on basic models of the Escort and Fiesta cars.

Ford Popular 103E

Ford Popular 103E

Production 1953-1959

155,340 made


'New' Ford Popular

Body style(s)

two door saloon


1172 cc straight-4 side-valve
30 bhp


3 speed manual

Wheelbase 90 in (2286 mm)
Length 151.5 in (3848 mm)
Width 56.5 in (1435 mm)
Height 64.5 in (1638 mm)
Curb weight 1,624 lb (737 kg)
Fuel capacity 6 imp gal (27 L; 7 US gal)


Ford Anglia

When production of the older Ford Anglia and Ford Prefect was stopped in 1953 the Popular was developed as a budget alternative. The Popular was based on the old, prewar-style E494A Anglia. It was powered by a Ford Sidevalve 1172 cc, 30 bhp (22 kW), four cylinder engine. The car was very basic. It had a single vacuum powered wiper, no heater, vinyl trim and very little chrome, even the bumpers were painted. Over 150,000 Populars were made.

This car proved successful because, while on paper it was a sensible alternative to a clean, late-model used car, in practice there were no clean late-model used cars available in postwar Britain due to the six-year halt in production caused by World War II. This problem was compounded by stringent export quotas that made obtaining a new car in the late 1940s and into the early 1950s difficult, and covenants forbidding new-car buyers from selling for up to three years after delivery. Unless the purchaser could pay the extra GBP100 or so for an Anglia 100E, Austin A30 or Morris Minor, the choice was the Popular or a prewar car.

A car tested by The Motor magazine in 1954 had a top speed of 60.3 mph (97.0 km/h) and could accelerate from 0-50 mph (80 km/h) in 24.1 seconds. A fuel consumption of 36.4 miles per imperial gallon (7.76 L/100 km; 30.3 mpg-US) was recorded. The test car cost £390 including taxes.

Ford Popular 100E

Ford Popular 100E

Production: 1959-1962

126,115 made


Ford Anglia

Body style(s): two door saloon


1172 cc straight-4 side-valve


3 speed manual

Wheelbase: 87 in (2210 mm)
Length: 149.75 in (3804 mm)
Width: 60.75 in (1543 mm)
Height: 58.75 in (1492 mm)
Curb weight: 1,708 lb (775 kg)

Related: Ford Anglia

In 1959 the old Popular was replaced by a new version that was in production until 1962. Like the previous version it used a superseded Anglia's body shell, this time that of the 100E, and it was powered by a strengthened 1172 cc sidevalve engine producing 36 bhp. The brakes were now hydraulic with 7.1 in (180 mm) drums all round. The basic model stripped out many fittings from the Anglia but there was a large list of extras available and also a De Luxe version which supplied many as standard.

In later years, these cars became popular as hot rods since the late 1950s when people started drag racing them due to their light weight construction. Ironically this started in the United States but became the definitive British hot rod, which it still is today.

The Motor magazine tested a 100E in 1960 and found it to have a top speed of 69.9 mph (112.5 km/h), acceleration from 0-50 mph (80 km/h) in 19.6 seconds and a fuel consumption of 33.2 miles per imperial gallon (8.51 L/100 km; 27.6 mpg-US). The test car cost £494 including taxes with a comment that it was the lowest priced orthodox saloon on the British Market.

Popular trim level

In 1975 the Popular name was revived as a base trim level of the newly released Ford Escort Mk2. This model featured a standard 1.1 litre OHV Kent motor, 12 inch wheels with cross ply tyres and drum brakes all round. The trim level proved long-standing across the Ford range, featuring on later Escorts and the Fiesta, from 1980 to 1991.

Ford Popular in television shows

In 1970, a Ford Popular was extensively modified by the British Broadcasting Corporation to become "Bessie", the Doctor's sprightly Edwardian roadster on the long-running science-fiction television show, Doctor Who. A black Ford Popular 103E (EBW 343) was also used in the Monty Python's Flying Circus sketch Mr. and Mrs. Brian Norris' Ford Popular. In a spoof of epic journeys, the Norrises (Michael Palin as Brian Norris and Graham Chapman in drag as Betty Norris) set out to see if the journey from Surbiton to Hounslow was possible; they were thwarted by the Thames and had to finish the trek by rail.

External links:

Ford Popular 103E A site for enthusiasts of the 103E Ford Populars.

For 100E enthusiasts site

Ford Prefect

The Ford Prefect is a line of British cars produced by the UK section of the Ford Motor Company, and a more upmarket version of its direct siblings the Ford Popular and Ford Anglia. It was introduced in 1938 and remained in production till 1941: returning to the market in 1945, it was offered till 1961. The car progressed in 1953from its original perpendicular or 'sit-up-and-beg' style to a more modern 3-box structure.

Like its siblings, the car became a popular basis for a hot rod especially in Britain where both its lightweight structure and its four cylinder engines appealed to builders.

E93A (1938-49)

Ford Prefect E93A The orange indicator flashers will have been retrofitted for safety reasons.

Production 1938–1949

199,493 produced

Body style(s)

4-door saloon,
2-door saloon, tourer, coupé, van.


1172 cc Ford Straight-4 side valve

Transmission(s) 3 speed manual
Wheelbase 87 in (2,200 mm)
Length 151 in (3,800 mm)
Width 61 in (1,500 mm)
Height 63.5 in (1,610 mm)

The Ford Prefect was introduced in 1938 and built by the Ford plant in Dagenham, Essex. The original Ford Prefect was a slight reworking of the previous year's 7Y, the first Ford car designed outside of Detroit, Michigan. It was designed specifically for the British market. It had a 1200 cc side valve engine with thermocirculation radiator (no pump) and the ability to be started by a crank handle should the battery not have sufficient power to turn the starter motor running from the 6 Volt charging system. The windscreen wipers were powered by the vacuum ported from the engine intake manifold - as the car laboured uphill the wipers would slow to a standstill due to the intake manifold vacuum dropping to near nil, only to start working again as the top was reached and the intake vacuum increased. The windscreen opened forward pivoting on hinges on the top edge; two flaps either side of the scuttle also let air into the car.

The most common body styles were two and four door saloons but pre war a few tourers and coupés were made. Post war only four door saloons were available on the home market but two door models were made for export.

41,486 were made up to 1941 and a further 158,007 between 1945 and 1948.

1950 Canadian-distribution British Ford Prefect

1950 Australian Ford Prefect Ute

E493A (1949–53)

Ford Prefect E493A Ford Prefect E493A showing the headlamps now integrated into the front wings / fenders.

Production 1949–1953

192,229 produced

Body style(s)

4-door saloon,
2-door coupe utility (Australia)


1172 cc Ford Straight-4 side valve


3 speed manual

Wheelbase 87 in (2,200 mm)
Length 151 in (3,800 mm)
Width 61 in (1,500 mm)
Height 63.5 in (1,610 mm)

Post war, the Prefect design changed little until replaced in 1952. The headlamps moved into the wings and trafficators were fitted (internally lit semaphores springing out from the door pillars to signal left and right turns), though due to space restrictions these were left out on the Australian-built Ute. Only four door saloons were available on the home market, the two door sector being left to the Anglia but some were made for export.

The brakes remained mechanically operated using the Girling rod system with 10 in (250 mm) drums and the chassis still had transverse leaf springs front and rear.

A Prefect tested by the British magazine The Motor in 1948 had a top speed of 61 mph (98 km/h) and could accelerate from 0-50 mph (80 km/h) in 22.8 seconds. A fuel consumption of 33.2 miles per imperial gallon (8.51 L/100 km; 27.6 mpg-US) was recorded. The test car which had the optional leather upholstery cost £412 including taxes. In standard form they commented that it was the cheapest 4-door car on the British market.

192,229 were made.

100E (1953–59)

Ford Prefect 100E Ford Prefect 100E (1959) seen in the UK.

Production 1953–1959

100,554 produced

Body style(s)

4-door saloon, pick-up


1172 cc Ford Straight-4 side valve


3-speed manual

Wheelbase 94 in (2,400 mm)
Length 152 in (3,900 mm)
Width 57 in (1,400 mm)
Height 58.5 in (1,490 mm)
Fuel capacity 7 imp gal (32 L; 8 US gal)

In 1953 a much redesigned Ford Prefect was introduced alongside the similar Ford Anglia and remained in production until 1959. The old separate chassis had gone, replaced by integral construction, and coil independent front suspension supplanted the transverse leaf spring. Girling hydraulic brakes with 8 in (200 mm) drums were used. The old side valve 1172 cc engine was retained. Externally it can be distinguished from the Anglia by having vertical bars on the radiator grille and four doors.

Inside there were separate front seats trimmed in PVC with leather as an option and two circular instruments in front of the driver one containing the speedometer and the other a fuel and water temperature gauges. De Luxe models included glove box locks. The gear change was floor mounted. The heater was an optional extra.

From 1955, the estate car version (the Squire) was introduced, mechanically identical to the estate car version of the Anglia 100E (the Escort) but with wooden strakes.

The Motor magazine tested a de-luxe 100E in 1957 and recorded a top speed of 71 mph (114 km/h) and acceleration from 0-60 mph (97 km/h) in 32.2 seconds. A "touring" fuel consumption of 33.1 miles per gallon(imperial) was recorded. On the home market it cost £658 including taxes of £220.

100,554 were made.

107E (1959–61)

Ford Prefect 107E Production 1959–1961

38,154 produced

Body style(s)

4-door saloon


997 cc Ford Straight-4 overhead valve

Wheelbase 87 in (2,200 mm)
Length 150 in (3,800 mm)
Width 61 in (1,500 mm)

This was a reworked 100E body with the engine and four speed gearbox from the Anglia 105E, produced until replaced by the Ford Cortina. 38,154 were made, all in a two-tone colour scheme.

Drum brakes of 8 in (200 mm) diameter were fitted, hydraulically operated, and the suspension was independent at the front using MacPherson struts. The rear driven axle used semi elliptic leaf springs. The steering mechanism used a worm and peg system.

On test, The Motor magazine recorded a top speed of 73 mph (117 km/h) and acceleration from 0-60 mph (97 km/h) in 27.2 seconds. A "touring" fuel consumption of 36 miles per gallon(imperial) was recorded. On the home market it cost £621 including taxes of £183.

Optional extras included a heater, windscreen washers, radio and leather upholstery to replace the standard PVC.


In addition to the UK, Ford Prefects were also sold in Australia, New Zealand, Argentina and Canada. The Canadian model was left-hand drive. The Australian built model was also available in a Coupe Utility or "Ute" form that had an open rear tray area similar in design to an American pick-up but based on the sedan and not derived from a truck or commercial vehicle. It was also license built in Latvia by Ford-Vairogs as Ford-Vairogs Junior.

Cash for Clunkers Car Buying Stimulus Bill

Cash for Clunkers, is a federal program passed by Congress and expected to be signed into law by President Obama. The program would encourage consumers to trade in older, less fuel efficient vehicles for new vehicles that get better fuel economy by providing vouchers worth up to $4,500. Modeled after several programs that have already been successfully implemented in Europe, the program is expected to be implemented in early August and run through October.

Though final details of the program have yet to be established, below are broad aspects of the Cash for Clunkers program as we know them today. The program would offer vouchers that allow consumers to save from $3,500 to $4,500 on a new-car purchase, and there are also various credits for trucks and work trucks.

Though information from Congress suggests that the program may stimulate 500,000 new-car purchases, believes that it will be a struggle to reach 250,000 vehicles, since the bill that passed Congress was far more restrictive than the original proposals, and its time frame reduced from one year to just several months.

"A program intended to stimulate new car sales should target people in the market for a car, but the program does not," asserted CEO Jeremy Anwyl. "The only people who qualify are those willing to take no more than $4,500 for their current car and immediately buy a new one — quite a narrow profile."

Consumers should know that it in many cases it will not make financial sense to use the Cash for Clunkers vouchers. If your used car is worth more than $4,500 than this bill will probably not help you.

Cash for Clunkers At a Glance

Consumers who have owned and operated an older car for at least one year may trade in their vehicles and receive vouchers worth up to $4,500 to help pay for new, more fuel-efficient cars and trucks. The program is expected to run through October and divides cars, trucks, SUVs and minivans into several categories. Vehicles that are traded in are to be crushed, not resold, and the sticker price of the replacement vehicle they purchase is not to exceed $45,000. Miles-per-gallon figures below refer to EPA "window sticker" values.

Passenger cars: The old car you would like to trade in must have been manufactured in 1984 or later, and must get 18 mpg or less city/highway combined. If the mileage of the new car is at least 4 mpg higher than the old vehicle, the voucher will be worth $3,500. If the mileage of the new car is at least 10 mpg higher than the old vehicle, the voucher will be worth $4,500.

SUVs, pickups, and minivans: The old vehicle you would like to trade in must have been made in 1984 or later, owned, insured and operated by you for one year, and must get 18 mpg or less city/highway combined. If the mileage of the new vehicle is at least 2 mpg higher than the old vehicle, the voucher will be worth $3,500. If the mileage of the new car is at least 5 mpg higher than the old vehicle, the voucher will be worth $4,500.

Large light-duty truck: New large trucks (pickup trucks and vans weighing between 6,000 and 8,500 pounds) with mileage of at least 15 mpg are eligible for vouchers. If the mileage of the new truck is at least 1 mpg higher than the old truck, the voucher will be worth $3,500. If the mileage of the new truck is at least 2 mpg higher than the old truck, the voucher will be worth $4,500.

Work truck: Under the agreement, consumers can trade in a pre-2002 work truck (defined as a pickup truck or cargo van weighing from 8,500-10,000 pounds) and receive a voucher worth $3,500 for a new work truck in the same or smaller weight class. There will be a finite number of these vouchers, based on this vehicle class' market share. There are no EPA mileage measures for these trucks; however, because newer models are cleaner than older models, the age requirement ensures that the trade will improve environmental quality. Consumers can also "trade down," receiving a $3,500 voucher for trading in an older work truck and purchasing a smaller light-duty truck weighing from 6,000-8,500 pounds.


How much are the vouchers worth? This will depend on the car you are turning in and the type of car you buy. In general, if the improvement in fuel economy between your old car and the car you buy is 10 mpg (combined highway mileage according to the EPA), the maximum credit will be $4,500. The requirement for improvement in fuel economy for SUVs, pickup trucks and minivans is lower. For specifics, see above.

How old does my car need to be? Eligible vehicles must be manufactured in model year 1984 or later. For work trucks however, any model built before 2002 is eligible. We anticipate that most cars traded in will likely be model-year 2000 and older.

What types of vehicles qualify? The vehicle must have a federal combined city/highway fuel economy of 18 or less miles per gallon. This means that many American-made cars and trucks will be eligible for vouchers toward the purchase of new vehicles. The categories of vehicles that will qualify fall into four classes: passenger cars, pickup trucks/SUV/minivan, large light-duty trucks (6,000-8,500 pounds) and work trucks (8,500-10,000 pounds).

What kind of mpg will the new vehicle need to get? Different levels of improvement are required for each type of vehicle. In passenger cars, if mileage is improved by 10 mpg, the $4,500 voucher is awarded; if fuel economy is improved by only 4 mpg, the $3,500 voucher is awarded. The mileage improvement levels and voucher amounts for the different classes of trucks are listed above.

Is there a time limit or cap on the number of vehicles? The bill has been funded with $1 billion, and that funding has been approved through November of 2009. Unless additional funding is provided, the program will expire by November. Since there is a funding limit, consumers who are interested in taking advantage of this program should contact a participating dealer as soon as funds become available (this will likely be in early August). There is a special provision in the bill that requires that no more than 7.5 percent of the funds for the program shall be used for work trucks.

How long do I need to have owned the vehicle I'm trading in? The vehicle must be insured and registered in your name and in use for at least one year.

If I have an older car that is in good running condition, or a classic car, is it mandatory for me to turn it in? No. This program is completely voluntary.

What happens to the car that you trade in? The dealer is responsible for sending the vehicle to a disposal facility. The entire vehicle will be crushed or shredded so that the car does not end up on the road again.

How will this affect used-car values? Since the "clunkers" will be taken off the road, there will be fewer older vehicles in the marketplace. However, our analysts don't expect this program to drastically affect used-car values.

Where do I find the mpg numbers to see if my vehicle qualifies for the Cash for Clunkers vouchers? The EPA's combined mileage will be used. This is a combination of the highway and city mileage for vehicles. Models prior to 2008 will use the converted MPG numbers which take into account the new EPA testing methods. This information can be found on the window sticker of the car or at

Although many vehicles will qualify for the program, it may not always make financial sense to trade it in. We've compiled a list of eligible trade-in vehicles that average 18 mpg or less, and have a value of less than $4,500.

What kind of vehicles qualify as large light-duty trucks? Trucks qualify based on class and vehicle weight. If you are considering taking advantage of this program, look up your vehicle on and determine its weight. If it is between 6,000 and 8,500 pounds and gets less than 15 mpg, you have a large light-duty truck and will need to buy a truck that improves your fuel economy by 1 mpg for a $3,500 voucher. If you select a truck that improves fuel economy by at least 2 mpg, you will qualify for the $4,500 voucher. A work truck is classified as being between 8,500 and 10,000 pounds. The only requirement for this class is that the trade-in vehicle needs to have been built before model-year 2002.

When is the program expected to go into effect, and will it be retroactive? The program is expected to go into effect in early August. It will not be retroactive to any vehicle purchase made before the program goes into effect.

Where will the money for vouchers come from? Since President Obama wants this to move as quickly as possible, it is likely that the money will come from the already approved Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) funds and the economic stimulus package.

Does the voucher augment or replace what the dealer would give me for my trade-in? The money you receive from the Cash for Clunkers program will act as your trade in value. It's unlikely to be combined with a dealer's trade in offer since the car you are trading is being crushed and therefore cannot be resold. This program is primarily designed to inflate the value of older vehicles worth less than $4,500.

Is there a limit on the price of the vehicle purchased with Cash for Clunkers vouchers? Vehicles purchased with the vouchers must have an MSRP of $45,000 or less.

How will the program be tracked? Via dealers or the DMV? It is likely that dealers will be able to obtain vouchers online once you establish the vehicle you are trading in. The Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) will be the prime tool in verifying information on the trade-in vehicle such as model year, engine size and the corresponding EPA-rated fuel-economy levels. The government has numerous databases with information on cars that are tracked through their VIN.

How will you get the money toward the trade-in? An electronic transfer from the government to the dealer will be issued once a vehicle is determined to qualify for the Cash for Clunkers program. The voucher amount would be credited as all or part of the down payment on a qualifying new car.

Will it apply to used-car purchases? No.

What if you're leasing a vehicle and wish to trade it in? Though all the final details of the program have been settled, it is unlikely that consumers who are currently leasing vehicles will qualify for this program.

What if you wish to lease the new vehicle? In this case, it appears likely that the voucher could be applied to a leased vehicle as a "capitalized cost adjustment." This would lower the price of the vehicle and thus reduce the monthly payment of a lease. In order for a lease to qualify, the term must be for no less than five years. However, we don't recommend getting into a five-year lease because of the additional costs.

Can the vouchers be combined with other manufacturer incentives? Yes, the voucher can be combined with incentives such as low interest financing and customer cash back. In some cases this will dramatically lower the purchase price of the vehicle.


Monday, June 22, 2009

Ford Wagons In Ford Ads

1957 Ford Country Wagon

1957 Ford Country Sedan Do-It-All Deluxe Optioned Station Wagon

1960 Ford Country Squire Station Wagon

1939 Ford Station Wagon

1947 Ford Station Wagon

1949 Ford Country Squire

1955 Ford Ranch Wagon

1956 Country Squire Wagon

1956 Ford Parklane Station Wagon

1957 Ford Station Wagon

1958 Ford Ranch Wagon

1958 Ford Ranch Wagon

1958 Ford Country Squire

1958 Ford Ranch Wagon

1959 Ford Country Squire Wagon

1959 Ford Station Wagon

1960 Ford Station Wagon

1961 Ford Falcon Station Wagon

1961 Tudor Falcon Station Wagon

1962 Ford Country Squire Station Wagon

1963 Falcon Wagons

1964 Ford Country Squire

1967 Ford Country Squire

Ford Panel Trucks 1935 to 1947