Monday, April 19, 2010

2011 Ford Future Cars

2011 Ford Focus

A Look at What's Coming for Ford, Lincoln and Mercury in the Near Future

When Ford CEO Alan Mulally took out massive loans in 2007 with the entire company serving as collateral, it looked like a desperation move by an automaker on the ropes. Come 2009, Mulally started looking like a genius.

Thanks to those loans, Ford didn't have to ask the government for loans or file bankruptcy, and thus didn't earn the public scorn that its cross-town rivals did. On top of that PR victory, Ford was a big beneficiary of the "Cash for Clunkers" program (Ford vehicles, particularly 90s Explorers, were some of the most common C4C trade-ins as well). And, thanks to some well-timed products like the 2009 F-150 and 2010 Fusion, its sales dropped slower than the market as a whole and the Blue Oval finished 2009 with a bigger share of the market.

Looking forward (and past the looming release of the Fiesta), Ford has enough product in the pipeline to build on its victories in 2009.

2011 Ford Fiesta Sedan

2012 Ford Focus

Let's Get Small: Ford figures B- and C-cars are the Next Big Thing, while Crossovers Replace (Most) Trucks

Early reviews covered both angles when Ford unveiled the 2012 One Ford Focus a year ahead of sales. "They didn't know when to lift the pen," an analyst said. "The Cruze is toast" a journalist countered. Yes, well, both ring true. The '12 Focus sedan is a jewellike car, and it has a lot of side-surfacing going on.

2012 Ford Focus

When the North American Focus reconverges with the European Focus, you'll have a choice of funky four-door hatchback or the rich-looking four-door sedan, both of which were just shown at the 2010 Detroit show. With the top-of-the-range Titanium trim level, it surely will sticker well into the middle of the Fusion price range. Ford is loading up the small end of its lineup quickly, with two Fiesta and two Focus body styles. The early reveal will almost certainly depress sales of the mediocre 2010 Focus.

Ford also has previewed its "mouse" for Sync, a simple four-direction toggle-button. It's part of newly expanded infotainment packaging called MyFord and MyLincoln, which entails a high-resolution eight-inch screen in the center stack, WiFi and MiFi (when in park), improved voice command, Sony-branded sound systems, and two USB and three RCA jacks, with an SD card slot. Reboot and drive.

2012 Focus sedan:

Launches with a 2.0-liter twin-independent variable cam timing gas direct-injection four, rated more than 150 horsepower. A 1.6-liter turbo EcoBoost is expected after Job One-worth the wait. Transmissions choices will be a six-speed manual or six-speed dual-clutch automated manual, with gearshift-manual controls. Trim levels are S, SE, SEL, and Titanium. Ford expects this car will eventually replace the Fusion as its bread-and-butter car. On sale first-quarter 2011.

2012 Focus hatchback:

Sure to be popular among a small cadre of enthusiasts. Its huge taillamps look as if they came from the Volvo C30, which shares its platform with the current European Focus. Both models are significantly lower in height, wider, and about the same length as the current U.S. Focus. They're about 110 pounds lighter than the Cruze, despite their ability to meet all global crash standards. The new car uses more high-strength steel than any other Ford, at 55 percent. The battery electric version will probably be the hatchback.

2011 Explorer:

New, unibody model based on the D3 front-drive (Ford Taurus) platform. Foreshadowed by the 2008 Explorer America concept, it will be available with all-wheel drive and replaces the Freestyle/Taurus X. Engines will include the 3.7-liter Duratec V-6 and the 3.5-liter EcoBoost version, making about 265 horsepower. Ford may add a 2.0-liter EcoBoost four later to aide Corporate Average Fuel Economy. On sale late '10.


2011 Super Duty: Features a version of the 411-horsepower, 6.2-liter V-8 in the F-150SVT Raptor, and the new Scorpion Diesel, a 6.7-liter V-8 with aluminum heads. On sale fall '10.

2011 F-150 EcoBoost: Likely a variation of the 3.5-liter EcoBoost turbocharged V-6 found in the Flex, Lincoln MKS, etc., biased for more torque. It should be able to beat the F-150's 4.6-liter V-8 for power. On sale late '10.

2012 Ford Escape: Based on the next-generation European Kuga, itself a derivative of the Focus platform. Lincoln may get its own version, and a plug-in hybrid will be added for '13. On sale late '11.

2012 Mercury compact sedan: Based on the new Focus. A coupe version has been rumored. On sale mid to late '11.

2012 Ford C-Max: Mazda5 competitor based on the Focus. On sale mid- to late '11.

2013 Ford Fusion/Mercury Milan/Lincoln MKZ: Converges with the European Mondeo's platform and gets an optional 1.6-liter EcoBoost I-4. On sale mid to late '12.

2014 Mustang: Next scheduled major change for the rear-drive musclecar.

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