Monday, November 26, 2007

So it's finally going to end in 2009?

I suspect that I'll be among a small group that mourns the passing of the Ford Ranger. But I've been reading lately that 2009 will be the end for the North American Ford Ranger. It's a shame really, but it's not really a surprise. For the last few years Ford North America has let the Ranger become obsolete, not investing anything in the platform, relegating the Ranger to the bargain bin and to fleet sales. Introduced in 1983 as a replacement for their Mazda sourced Courier compact truck, the Ranger went on to be a dominant force in compact pickups, not only here in North America, but around the world. Evolution was slow for the truck, but evolve it did, with gradual improvements across the board, power, comfort and styling, that is until about 2002, when only minor improvements in the cab size and power were the final real changes. It's been mostly trim pieces that have changed since then. I've been a vocal critic of Ford's abandonment of the "Compact" pickup market. But considering that none of these trucks are truly "Compact" any more I can't scream too loudly, nobody really cares. Take a look at Nissan, Toyota, GM and Dodge, their compact, now "Midsize" trucks are huge! I have a 1999 Ford Ranger and I love it, it's not too big, gets moderate fuel economy and can perform any task that the average home owner could expect from their personal truck. It's as comfortable off road as on, in the city as in the country and definitely at the mall or city dump. I can park this truck on Manhattan streets when I go to a Broadway show, or at Home Depot when going to pick up dry wall for endless renovations to our little Cape Cod style house. I did drive the Ranger as my solitary vehicle for several years, to weddings and to funerals and down to the recylce yard and organic dump. But I've been critical of Ford over the last few years and admittedly said that if I was in the market for a new truck the Nissan Frontier would be my choice, because unlike the Ford it has 4 doors, more power and a 6 speed manual trans.
So, as I read the posts at AutoBlog and Jalopnik about the demise of the faithful Ranger, what do I see in comment? People asking if Ford will bring this Australian Falcon Ute here as a replacemnt. Not a chance boys and girls, Ford will abandon this market segment. Besides, as cool as a new Ranchero would seem, a Ranchero isn't a Ranger. A car based pickup is not a truck. Since the Australian Falcon is not easily converted to Left Hand Drive and their Engines have no hopes of passing US Emissions, it's unlikely that Ford will rush them to our shores.
It's a nice thought, but it's not going to happen. Besides, Ford has the new Ranger already. Well they have it for everyone but us that is. I've talked about it before. The new Ranger/BT-50.

And if this was available in North America I'd buy one tomorrow. Why, well because it's a great truck, that's why. And it has 4 doors, is available with 2 great Diesel Engines and finally a 6 speed manual transmission. And since I paid $3.40 a gallon for 87 octane gas this morning and we all know it's going go higher, maybe a nice Diesel would make a huge difference.
I very much doubt Ford will bring this to the North American market, I hear it will be in Mexico but not the United States or Canada. Why not Canada I have no clue.
I wonder how big Mulally's bonus will be this year? I hope he enjoys it, because the way things are looking at FoMoCo he'll need to bank it.
I'm disgusted, I really am.


Thursday, November 08, 2007

There better be something really impressive under the the mask on that 09 Mustang or else ........

There had better be something really impressive about the refresh for the 09 Mustang or Ford can be expected to be handed their ass on a platter. It's bad enough that domestic competition is on it's way with the Camaro and Challenger, or that Japanese coupes will erode market share for Mustang, but now Hyundai?!
I was reading AutoBlog and found the story linked in title with pics of the what may be the new RWD coupe coming next year. And you know what? It looks good and if the specs are correct it's better than a Mustang on paper. And probably on the track too. While a V6 Mustang starts at $19k (realy $21K) and has 210 hp, the new Hyundai coupe will start at similar price and have a 2.0 Turbo I-4, making 215 hp! And do you think Hyundai is going to have a solid rear axel? Not a chance, I saw the Genesis concept at the NY show in April, IRS was visible and that's what I've read since. And before you say the Mustang GT has 300 HP in a V8, take a look at the specs for the V6 coupe, 300 hp and the price? Matching the base price of the Mustang GT. And what if Hyundai drops their V8 in the coupe? Well I've read that their V8 is expected to put out 360 hp without a supercharger. And you know one other thing that pisses me off? The Hyundai Coupe concept here has a moonroof, something you can't get on a Mustang. And don't tell me the Mustang comes as a convertible, if I were looking for a coupe, I'd want a moonroof. And you never know, Hyundai could eventually come out with a convertible if they feel the market will bear it. Jesus H Christ! Ford should shit themselves if Hyundai ever tries their hand at a full size truck! No doubt they won't screw it up like Toyota and Nissan did.

And I laughed my ass off the first time I drove a Hyundai back in 87. I was shopping for my first new car and bought a Ford Festiva, because it was better quality and had more equipment. Sure I payed over $1800 more than the Excell's base price, but I knew I was getting a better car. Coincidentally from Korea and actually built by Kia, who Hyundai now owns!
I like the idea of the 2.0 Turbo I4 and RWD, I had suggested Ford do something similar with this generation Mustang, replace the 4.0 V6 with a 2.3 or maybe 2.5. Comments were negative, but I saw it as a new SVO. Hell, when this comes out I'll take one for a spin and based on the quality I've seen from Hyundai over the last couple of years, who knows, maybe I'll buy one.
Unbelievable, Ford out Mustanged by Hyundai???


Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Tiff's day of fun in a Ford Puma, why you'll never see this from a US TV show

Wow, wanted to share this great video from YouTube of Fifth Gear's Tiff having some fun with and giving stunt tips in a Ford Puma! The Puma being one of those cool Euro Fords that we never got here and probably never will. But just ask your self why you'll never see an American TV show giving tips like this. Because every jerk who tried it and then wrecked would get a lawyer and try their hand at the judicial lottery, that's why.

So much to be disapointed about in this video, cars we don't get, information that we couldn't be shown for fear of lawsuits and great television we don't get either. Oh well, at least there's YouTube.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Even the faithful aren't impressed, Ford allows Focus enthusiasts access........

So Ford let a group of Focus enthusiasts from Focaljet.com and Focus Fanatics tour the plant and drive the upcoming 2008 Focus. Not a bad idea, let guys who already love your brand and the model have a peak and get feedback right? But what's the quote I read in the article (linked in title) oh yeah it was "not bad." Wow praise for the faithful! Some of the comments were predicatable like why no SVT version and why kill the hatchback. As one of the young enthusiasts put it "hatchbacks are the minivan" of their generation. Sure they tried to distract the group with the new whiz bang Sync system, but they just weren't buying it. Sure they like the car, it's nice, but it's not exactly what they or I wanted is it. One comment that confused me was "Ford needs to have an SVT and 2.3-liter engine in its plans right now," then I remembered that the 2.3 was only offered in the 4 door ST model recently.

I'm sure the new Focus is a fine car, but really it's not enough. Ford eliminated the 3 and 5 door hatchbacks as well as the station wagon to "simplify the production and lineup" stupid move if you ask these guys and me. While the Focus is a benchmark car around the globe, here in the US it's an also ran. While the rest of the world gets a totally new Focus chassis (including Communist China, Russia and Latin America) we get a refreshed and cropped lineup devoid of what a Focus really was, a great all around useful car which lent itself to easy modification and personalizaion. I wonder if Igor, a regular commentor here, was among this group? Igor who I nearly gave MyFordDreams to, is a sharp character and very active on Foculjet and other enthusiast sites. I've always been impressed with his feedback, he's a real true blue Ford guy. I'd like to hear his take on this... Igor you reading this?
Ask me again why I bought a Mazda 3? Look at the pictures above and you can see why.


Monday, September 10, 2007

Commentor asks why I'm bitter about Hybrids and what is my answer to high fuel costs, so here we go...

Hybrids, they're great for some folks. Mostly people living in or around major urban centers. But I've never really been convinced that they're a long term answer. In my last post on the Volvo ReCharge Plug In Hybrid Concept, one commentor says that I seemed bitter. Well I wouldn't go that far, let's just say I'm not a fan. I'm actually one of the few people I know that could benefit from a Hybrid, as the majority of my driving is "City" traffic at lower speeds, and that's where Hybrids shine. Although Al Gore's kid did recently prove that a Prius can top the century mark on the highway. But let's think about Hybrids seriously. For people that do long commutes they don't make as much sense. The Highway MPG is good, but not stellar for the added cost of a Hybrid. Hybrids cost more than comperable vehicles to build, purchase and maintane. And then there's the question about life of the vehicle and what happens at the end. Hybrids are new technology, they have more computer controls than a conevetional Internal Combustion Engine vehicle. So over the useful life of a Hybrid can we expect more service problems? And where will you have it service? And what about when the car is wrecked or just met it's end, then needs to go bye bye? Will there be environmental issues with the batteries? Who covers that expense if there are?
Hybrids are nice and they make us feel good, but what's a better solution? Diesels! I've said it before and I'll say it again. Ask yourself why in Europe and the UK Diesels acount for about 50% of the market. It's because they get 15-20 % better fuel economy. But Diesel emissions smell right? Well yes and no, but we'll come back to that. Diesels make more sense for rural/suburban drivers than Hybrids and don't have those nagging service/end of life issues. Diesels do cost more than gasoline versions, so there is a price penalty to get into one, but they last longer too. Stricly speaking money spent on a Diesel vehicle is money well spent. We've all hear of those Volvos/Mercedes that the town doctor or banker has been driving for the last 20 years, well more than likely a Diesel.



But the comment also asked what I would do about the rising fuel costs. Well Diesels give us several oportunities here. First because they use less fuel they save there, but here's the kicker they can burn Bio Diesel with little or no modifications and burn cleaner and eventually cheaper.
Anyone who's read my blogs over the last 2 years knows that I love the idea of Bio Diesel for several reasons. It doesn't come from OPEC, it burns cleaner than any petrolium based fuel, it's renewable and we can make it here in the United States. Bio Diesel also makes more power than Petro Diesel. It's a no brainer folks! Why pay more for a Hybrid when you can pay more for a Diesel?
I'll take the Focus Turbo Diesel pictured above!

Friday, September 07, 2007

Volvo plug in Hybrid??

I've always been a fence sitter on Hybrids, convinced they're really only useful for Urban residents. And as for Plug-In Hybrids, I'm not a fan. But Environmentalists and Hybrid fans have been clamoring for them. And Volvo wants to make them happy with their latest concept the ReCharge. Linked in the title is the story over at Jalopnik.

Here you have it, Combustion Engine (this one a Flex Fuel version) Electric Motors and Batteries. And for those unhappy Prius/Escape owners who want a plug, there's one of those as well. The idea being that for the first 100 kilometers you don't need to rely on anything but Electric. A neat idea if you're not Al Gore's kid or living outside any city, but how practical would it be in the real world?


The ReCharge has the advantage of being based on the C30 (Mazda3/Ford Focus) chassis, so development costs could be lower than something built from scrap. And since the Ford Escape Hybrid has technology that's already being developed for Fusion/Milan/Mazda6 chassis, I'm sure some things could translate easily enough. Transmission, Batteries and charging system I would guess, as well as computer controls.
While I'm happy to see any inovation from FoMoCo and their partners, I'm sceptical about Plug-In Hybrids. I just see it as placating the lunatic fringe. It's great PR and that can't hurt. But will it play in Peoria? I doubt it.
Hybrids are great for city folks, but Diesels are the answer for the rest of us.



New Mazda6 from Jalopnik...

I cam across the pics of the new Mazda 6 at Jalopnik (link in title) and they're close to CGIs that had been online in the past. The Mazda 6 had always been a nice looking car, despite the criticism from Jeremy Clarkson on BBC's Top Gear. But the new 6 is a real improvement on an already nice car. I'd read and heard from Igor that the new Mazda6 would share DNA with Ford or Europe's Mondeo.

And I can see the family resemblance. Here is the 5 door Mondeo. You can see roofline and beltline similarities as well as the rear wheel arch. Word is that the next Fusion, which is Mazda 6 based will also benefit from the Mondeo's styling/chassis. For my ears that's good news.
Not that the Fusion isn't a great car, but I for one prefer the new Mondeo.


The Mazda 6 like the Mondeo comes in 4 and 5 door as well as a handsome wagon. Right now the Fusion only comes in a 4 door version. No word on whether we can ever expect a 5 door or wagon. With Ford's push of CUV and SUV it seems unlikely to me. Toyota long ago dropped their Camry wagon, as did Honda the Accord wagon, so unlike Europe, a wagon variant isn't as important. It's a shame, but I think I'm in the minority there.
Could this be a silver lining in those storm clouds hovering over Dearborn?
Since Mazda and Ford share so much DNA and that commonality is only going to increase, it's reasonable to expect a FoMoCo version of many Mazda concepts and that's not a bad thing.
Common Ford/Mazda platform and models;
Fusion/Milan/Mazda6/Lincoln MKZ possibly to include Volvo S60 and Euro Mondeo
Edge/CX9/MKX (CX7 to a lesser degree)
Mazda3/Volvo C30, S40, V50/ Euro Ford Focus/Freelander (LR2)/Mazda5
Ford Fiesta (Europe)/Mazda2/Ford Ecosport (Latin America)




Holy crap! I love this on so many different levels....

I saw this on Jalopnik and can't tell you all the ways this gets me excited!
The Mustang GT RTD Bio-Diesel racer. It's got a 2.0 liter Diesel putting out 280 hp and 369 lb ft of torque! And it runs on Bio-Diesel! Top speed? How about 152 mph!!

Now I know there's absolutely no way that this would ever get built, but it does warm the heart to see it. And the body is plastic, derived from natural plant fiber, developed in partnership with German Aerospace.

I like the idea of a sporty coupe with Bio-Diesel power, but I think I'm going to be lonely waiting for that one. Still it's encouraging to see FoMoCo develop something interesting. I wonder how this will trickle down to Ford's European customers?

Saturday, September 01, 2007

While Ford in the US just stagnates, look at this!


I know it's just a rendering of a concept but check out the Ford Kuga. I found this at Car Scoop.

Wow! Check out the Ka

While there's been attention given to the new Verve concpet and for good reason, I missed any news about Ford Europe's other mini car, the Ka.
But I clicked on over to Car Scoop and caught David's post on the new Ka.

I like it! Why can't we get something like this?


I'm a Ford guy! But it's tough sometimes

I'm a Ford guy, no doubt about it, but it's tough sometimes to be a Ford fanatic. I've owned quite a few Fords over the years and still have my Ranger. I love my Ranger, it's a great truck, but if I was going out to buy a replacement I'm not sure it would be a Ford. And that's not good for Ford, not good at all. Every company wants new customers, ones that haven't purchased their brand before, but in reality they rely heavily on repeat customers. When I bought my Ranger, it compared favorably to what was available on the market. Power was a little less and while others were growing and being re-designed Rangers had not had a major redesign and to be honest still haven't. But today the power is not competative and comparable models have been re-designed even further. To say the Ranger hasn't been re-designed isn't totally acurate either, obviously the rest of the world has a totally new Ranger with 2 great Diesel powerplants. And as I've said in the past, if I was in the market today the Nissan Frontier would be my choice, because of the powerful V6 and the 6 speed manual transmission.
Wow, that hurt to say, but it's true. I mean, I LOVE Ford! And I won't buy a new Ranger?
I have worse news for you, I'm not sure I'd buy a new Mustang either! And I love Mustangs. I had a 91 LX 5.0, the one pictured here. I bought this new in September of 1990, special ordering the Deep Emerald Green with T5 manual. And at the time, this was the best bang for the buck you could get. And because I ordered the notchback LX instead of the GT, I had one of the fastest offerings of the time. Yes a Z-28 had more power, but the lighter weight LX notchback still had 225 hp and would give a Z-28 a run for their money on street or strip for a lot less money. Combine the low cost of entry to the ease of modification and you had a potent combination! And I raced my Mustang from time to time.

And I drove to the track too! This picture was taken by my friend as we were heading towards Englishtown Raceway Park for a Mustang event. This was as I passed them at over 100 mph!
But Mustangs, while still being reasonable priced are not as great a bang for buck value. They're a value, but where's the bang?? Don't send me hate mail, send it to Ford.
Think about it folks, the base Mustang only has 210 hp! And while the GT has 300, is that realy competative? I mean look at the power in other cars. My Mazda has 161 hp out of 2.3 liters and if I had the MazdaSpeed version we'd be talking 260 hp. Ford has the new 3.5 liter V6 that cranks out 265 hp, but the Mustang has the 4.0 putting out 210? What else comes with 300 hp? How about the Subaru WRX STI and Mitsu Evo, and they have engines about half the size. But you're saying that those are expensive rice burners. Well, how much do you think you're going to pay for a Mustang? A base V6 mustang can be had for under $25,000 but would you want it? I mean look around, there are family sedans that have more power, a lot more power!
It's time for some real competative power in Mustang and maybe an IRS? Ford has proven they can build an IRS that can handle the power, so that's no excuse. I'm sure you've read about Hyundai's new Coupe that could be here as soon as 2009. It's supposed to have Rear Wheel Drive and Independant Rear Suspension. And rumors on AutoBlog say that the new 4.6 liter V8 could be putting out 360 hp! So, if Hyundai can do it, why not Ford?
I'm a huge fan of the retro styling and my dream was to have this latest version of the Mustang, but reality bites and it bites hard! Aside from styling what does Mustang offer? A solid rear axle, small trunk and low power and only decent fule economy. But Mustang is a lifestyle car, right? Well maybe, but even lifestyle cars need substance.


I say again, I'm a huge Ford fan, really it's true. Despite some of the harsh things I've said in the past. But maybe Ford needs to listen to their fans? I'm going to list my Fords over the years for you so you can see I'm true blue. Starting with a 67 Ford Fairlane Wagon, 79 Pinto sedan, 78 Thunderbird (pictured here in the staging lanes at Englishtown) 77 Lincoln Versailes, 88 Festiva, 91 Mustang (above photos) 92 Crown Victoria, 93 Taurus SHO and 99 Ranger.
I've owned and loved Fords for as long as I can remember. But I say Ford needs to improve everything. There's little on their lot today that I would buy. Maybe the Fusion or if I needed a full size truck an F-150, possibly the Edge or Freestyle, but what else? Not a Focus, not a Ranger, not the Fivehundred (even if you do call it Taurus.) There is little excitement at Ford these days.



But there are Fords out there that I would buy, just not here in the US. How about the Focus the rest of the world gets? How about the Fiesta or Mondeo? How about the Galaxy or SMax?
What about the Australian Ford Falcons?
It's not easy being a Ford fan these days. It's just depressing sometimes.




Wednesday, August 29, 2007

This is what I'm talking about, these are Bold Moves!

The Iosis concept! The showpiece of "Kinetic" design for Ford of Europe! This is where Ford should have gone for their North American designs, not the "Taurus/500". Not DAVE

I want a Reflex! This is a hot little car, and could be built on Fiesta mechanicals.
And even the "lowly" Fiesta is going to be a real hottie.
Hey Allen, Bill, Mark! This is where you should have gone!



What's going to happen to poor Ford?


What's going to happen to Ford? I doubted and they denied for the longest time, that they would sell their Premiere Auto Group brands, but it keeps popping up in the news. The latest that Indian auto maker Tata may buy Jaguar and Land Rover. And while there are new and interesting models coming from all sectors, what's coming from Ford? What happened to the much hyped Fairlane and Bronco concepts? When will the new Fiesta get here? Why drop the Focus hatchbacks ? How many variations of Mustang can you sell? Where is the Way Forward leading?
It's been depressing for a devoted Ford Fanatic like myself to watch what's been happening or not happening over the last 2 years. And I just don't see Mulally or Fields pulling any rabbits out of their hats. Yes, I know it's not just FoMoCo that's doing poorly, GM and Chrysler have made their mistakes too, but I'm a Ford guy! Yes, I know I bought a Mazda, but I still have my Ford truck and bleed Dearborn Blue.
Over the last 2 years I've said countless times what I think Ford should have done, but I'll spit out some quick one liners here to remind you.
Bring out the Reflex! Based on the Fiesta/Mazda 2.
Bring the Euro Focus here to North America!
Bring the Mondeo here!

Bring the EcoSport/Fusion here!
Bring the Australian Falcon here!
Bring the new Ranger/BT50 here with their Diesel powertrains.
Bring a new Econoline to market!
Bring a new Bronco out based on the EcoSport!
If the Interceptor comes to market, make sure it has IRS!
Get more power in the base Mustang and Mustang GT now! 210 hp for the 4.0 and 300 for the GT are not enough. I read today that Hyundai's new 4.6 V8 may put out as much as 360 hp, and it will be in a new RWD sedan and coupe, FoMoCo needs to get it's head out of it's ass and make some of these things happen!
So much for Driving American Inovation!
Oh and one last cheap shot, concerning this new Sync system developed with Microsoft. Stupid! I mean I fear each time Microsoft comes out with a new system, because I know there will be bugs and service packs for months. Do you want that with a new car?
Poor Ford my ass! If they go down, it will be because of their own stupidity! And if a Ford fan says that, then you know it's serious.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Look at that spike in June!

I found this amazing, I posted a video in June from YouTube of TopGear's review of Focus ST and look at the traffic spike!! I have to admit that I'm also amazed at the traffic level for the months where I posted nothing at all??

Sorry about these nonsensical posts tonight, but getting back into the groove of blogging again is a process. Besides, I'm not a professional, just some guy.

Looking back at my begining...........

I don't know what I was hoping for when I started this blog. Just over 2 years ago, in April of 2005 I started MyFordDreams. And at the time I knew nothing about blogging and little about computers. that first year I posted over 900 times, that's for 9 months by the way, averaging 100 posts a day.

I guess I wanted to be the Ford version of AutoBlog or Jalopnik, I don't know.
I learned a lot in the last 2 years and Blogger added a lot of features that made it easier too.

I had some fundamental guidelines, it should be FREE, not cost me a dime, and it should be fun.
When it started to be painful, I slowed down.

Linked in the title is my first post on MyFordDreams, take a look.

Not dead, not yet




MyFordDreams isn't dead yet, really I plan on coming back in the fall, just a few weeks.

I needed to push back from this and get perspective. FoMoCo hasn't been doing well and it had been discouraging. I'm not going to try and be AutoBlog or Jalopnik anymore. No more rehashing of press releases. I'm just going to do this for the fun. Now that may mean that I'm not here everyday, and that my posts are sometimes just the fun YouTube videos but I'm not going to kill it.


I was over at The Auto Prophet's blog today and he pointed out that many blogs are dead or dying. Take CarPundit, he's ended it after 3 years. CarsCarsCars hasn't posted since July. My friend JD of AutoEratic hasn't posted in months either. The Autobloggers group is dark too. The last post over there was my post in July about my friends' Blogathon efforts over at KMRL.


Igor a faithful reader and source of inspiration had offered to take over MyFordDreams months ago when I had my crisis of faith, but I couldn't give this to somebody else. I loved doing this! I started MyFordDreams in April of 2005 and MyFordDreams2 in April of 2006.


I've interacted with some great folks, people I respect and admire and I don't want to just end it, I'll be back, check with me in 30 days.


Joe

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Can I proudly wave the Blue Oval bannter driving this.....?

So there's the $64 dollar question, can I claim to be BigFordFan driving a Mazda?

I say yes! Because this is the Ford I should have been able to buy. The Mazda3 shares more in common with the Euro Ford Focus than the current offering in the US does. Same great chassis, better appointments, the works.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Help my friends as the raise money for Vets!

I know MyFordDreams has been dormant, but it's not dead. Just need to recharge my batteries. But while I'm sitting on my hands others are doing what they can for charity and I'm asking you to help them!
A couple of friends of mine, great folks that I've known for 20 years started an Internet Radio Station last year. KMRL MojoRadioLive and it's great. A real mix of music and personality. And these big hearted folks are taking part in something called Blogothon 2007.


Blogothon is a charity drive, think telethon but with blogs that raises money for various charities. Click the link in title to see KMRL's blog.


And this year KMRL is blogging for Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund.
I hear they're also broadcasting live for 24 hours with contests and prizes and all sorts of fun.
Check out KMRL at www.mojoradiolive.com


Sunday, June 03, 2007

MyFordDreams floundering? Getting long in the tooth?

As much as I still jones for a Reflex fix, is MyFordDreams floundering? It's been a month since I last posted anything and it was touch and go before that. Don't get me wrong my love of things Ford is still strong, but there hasn't been a lot of good news to write about. And I'm just tired of doing nothing more than bitch about what's wrong with Ford's lineup. For 2 years I've blogged at MyFordDreams and MyFordDreams2, but I'm not sure I have it in me anymore.
There are others outthere who get paid to do this, I don't. This has always been a labor of love for me. But where's the love? Where is the warm feeling for Ford? Like Ford's sales, the interest is slipping. I love what Ford does overseas, the Fiesta, Focus, Mondeo, Falcon and much much more. But with the exception of endless special Mustang models what do we have to look forward to in North America? Sure, we're supposed to get a Fiesta in 09, and sales of some of the new product like the Edge and Fusion are improving, but what excitement is there?
It's tough doing a blog called My Ford Dreams when those dreams are becoming nightmares.
I've also got other projects I'm involved in that don't tie in to MyFordDreams, so I can't honestly say what the future of this blog is. Nor can I see much interest from others either.
I remember when I interacted with other bloggers and would get the ocassional e-mail from Ford employees and fanatics, but now all I get in comments is spam and e-mails are no better. Not like the heyday of MyFordDreams when Jalopnik and AutoBlog would refer to pieces I had done on the Focus and Fiesta. I still get a bit of traffic on this blog, mostly people doing Google searches on Ford products and that's great if this can be of some help or interest to those people, but I can't get jazzed up by what's happening at FoMoCo these days.
So, I'll be back, but not as often and with less fire. Unless something amazing happens in Dearborn soon. MyFordDreams isn't dead, yet....

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Fiesta finally??


Could it be true? Igor, a frequent commentor here, has been saying so for a year and of course there have been rumors. But now AutoBlog is reporting on a Motor Trend article saying that the Ford Fiesta will be coming here to the US a year after it's freshened version comes out in Europe. And it's not going to get the Dave treatment. The Fiesta could look something like this Auto Express CGI from the UK. It's Kinetic DNA from Europe intact.
Well, maybe things are looking up at FoMoCo. I read recently that the new Edge CUV is doing very well, Fusion/Milan sales are slowly but steadily rising and I've seen quite a few new Escapes on the road. Is it enough? I don't know, but signs are slowly improving at Dearborn.
Maybe MyFordDreams won't all be nightmares? But I still vow that if the Interceptor sedan comes to market iwth a solid rear axle, I will loose all interest in the Blue Oval and never buy a Ford branded car again!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Jalopnik has news about Lincoln MKS, why am I not thrilled?

Jalopnik (and AutoBlog) has a piece on the Lincoln MKS, well actually a disguised test mule and speculation that it could have up to 380 hp from a twin turbo version of Ford's new 3.5L V6. And you wonder why I'm not thrilled right? I mean a Lincoln with 380 hp! Well lets start with that. You know FoMoCo doesn't have the stones to actually produce a car with that much power, even with all wheel drive. And despite the MKS not being the ugliest car I've ever seen, it's not the most awe inspiring either.
And lets face it kids, it's just a pimped out 500/Taurus. Not that the Taurus is a bad car, but is it a "flagship" vehicle?? Lincoln would be better served by the MKR concept in that respect.


If FoMoCo wants to really make any "Bold Moves" then how about something more like this?
MyFordDreams are turning into nightmares everyday.
It's tough to get jazzed up by half assed efforts, when I know what FoMoCo can do. They have to look no further than their overseas operations for a handbook on how to do it right.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Why it's difficult to be a Ford fan at the New York Auto Show

So, I fnally got to the Javits Center this Friday and while I'm sure you've read about everything on AutoBlog and Jalopnik, but here's my take on the show in general and Ford's offerings in particular. It's getting tough be be enthusiastic about FoMoCo these days. I can take a positive spin and say how nice the Edge/CX9/MKX are, how really impressed I was with the Volvo C30 and how cool the Lincoln MKR and Ford Interceptor concepts looked. The concepts were well received by the crowd, even after a week of the show being open to the public. But as hard as I tried, I just couldn't become one of the sheep and ooh and aah at the Interceptor. It's just a shame really. As the spokesman stood on the rotating turntable dazzling the crowd with specs like "330 hp from the 5.0 Cammer engine" I could not help but want to puke my guts up when he with a straight face tried to excite the crowd with " and underneath, you'll find the Mustang multi link rear suspension with solid rear axle. What??? Hold on, solid rear axle?

And the story got no better at the turntable for the new Shelby GT500KR. An improved multi link rear supsention and solid axle. And for the incredible markup we can expect from dealers over list price, you get only about 25 more horsepower, a different hood and other minor improvements. So let's guess that the list price will be about $50k and that like the GT500 dealers will shaft you for another $20k. If you're gonna screw me like that, at least kiss me first!
In 2004 when the 05 Mustang was rolled out and I saw it at Nashville Super Speedway for the 40th Aniversary celebration, I like many was so excited to see it, that I appologized for FoMoCo's failure to equip the Stang with an IRS. The rationalization was that at the lower price point for a Mustang GT it was the best bang for the buck you could get! Well that was 2004, this is now.
And in this market if Ford tries to bring the Interceptor to market without an IRS then they deserve to go down the toilet. Seriously, Chrysler/Dodge have the 300/Magnum/Charger all with more power and IRS. GM is bringing the Pontiac G8 with more power and IRS. Ford sells the Falcon/Fairmont in Australia with more power and IRS. See what I'm saying?
Ford will be signing their own obituary if they bring a rear wheel drive sedan to market here in North America without an IRS! I hope to god that someone at FoMoCo can see this.
I will go further with this, if FoMoCo does come out with a RWD sedan and it doesn't have IRS like every one of their competitors, then I will never buy another Ford Branded product in my life! And I will advise anyone who asks to follow my lead. If they want to die a misserable death, so be it! But they can't say they didn't see the trends in the market place or that they couldn't design an IRS that would work. They have no farther to look than the Control Blade IRS used in Australia!

Thursday, April 12, 2007

MojoRadioLive to revamp and relaunch in May




Several months ago, I told you about MojoRadioLive KMRL Radio and Internet Radio station. And the Mojo went in for a bit of a tuneup and is getting to kick off again in May.
I've seen and heard some of the shows, and heard good things about the others, some of the station favorites such as DJ DarkStar, WebKyttn, Bug, Grey's Garage and the Gimp are returning and there will be some new shows .
So, head on over to MojoRadioLive at the link in the title and check it out.
I've heard from a reliable source that there may be some Car Talk from time to time.

Just when I was starting to warm up to Mulally, he goes and pulls a bonehead move like this.


Over at AutoBlog they've got a piece, indluding two videos, showing Ford CEO Mulally caught in a lie, where he makes President Bush look foolish. Now, if your company is doing poorly and wants to work with the Government and this administration, to improve your situation, then you don't attempt humor at the President's expense. Simple really, even if you're angry at the administration and frustrated that things aren't going your way, you don't do this.
Just when I was thinking that Mr Boeing Boy was getting with the program, he pulls this bone head move. Way to go Alan! You dumbass!
Now, I don't care what your politics are, you have to recognize that this was not a smart move.