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Posts Tagged ‘ecoboost’

Blasphemy or Brilliant? Four-Cylinder Mustang Will Be Produced

March 11th, 2013
Ford Evos

Ford Evos concept could preview the 2015 Mustang

Ford is creating all kinds of controversy regarding the next Mustang. First of all, the design will abandon its retro looks and evolve into a sleeker sports car worthy of worldwide distribution. The car’s infamous rear suspension will finally be modernized, and to top it all off, a turbocharged 4-cylinder engine will be on the options list for the first time since the mid-1980s.

That’s a lot for Mustang fans to digest all at once.

Even more controversial than the existence of the four-banger is the determination of who will get access to it.

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An Engine in a Suitcase, Or an Electric Car?

November 19th, 2012
2013 Ford Fiesta

2013 Ford Fiesta

In my book, many interesting conversations can be had using the words “turbochargers” and “superchargers.”

In a conversation with a friend this weekend, though, my mention of the words were met with a blank stare. I guess not everyone is into cars or even terribly knowledgeable about what makes them tick.

Our talk began with a question. My friend asked, “What do you think of electric cars?”

Well, that’s quite the can o’ worms in my world, and talking through the answer took the better part of the next 30 minutes. We discussed everything from the environmental impact of battery manufacturing to electricity production to supporting infrastructure to the mechanics of how superchargers and turbochargers work in gas and diesel engines. Of course, my bottom-line answer to her question was this: Electrics have the right idea in saving fuel, I’m just not convinced of their execution. I’d prefer to go with an economical turbo gas or diesel vehicle.

Like maybe the 2014 Ford Fiesta, with a 1.0-liter EcoBoost 3-cylinder.

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Cars Coming Soon: 2013 Ford Fiesta, New Suzuki SX4

September 6th, 2012

2013 Ford Fiesta

If you’re going to drive a small car, drive one with some attitude.

Yeah, something like the Toyota Yaris will get you to Starbucks and back, but no one will turn their head and wonder what you’re driving as you order your triple mocha breve.

For that, you need something with a little more personality. Two small cars on the way could be the answer, as they’ll offer fuel economy and dependability to go with head-turning style.

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2013 Ford Explorer Sport: Two Things That Could Hold It Back

August 27th, 2012

2013 Ford Explorer Sport

The 2013 Ford Explorer Sport answers a question not a lot of people will ask.

Ford changed the new Explorer from a truck-based SUV to a more efficient unibody crossover to reduce weight and increase fuel economy. An optional 4-cylinder EcoBoost engine helps meet that goal and gives the Explorer a gas mileage rating of 20 mpg city, 28 highway, which is pretty good considering the size of the vehicle. Why Ford would go and morph the Explorer back into a gas-guzzling SUV is beyond me.

In theory, the new Explorer Sport makes sense, but there are two important factors I think will keep it from becoming a major success.

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The Aluminum Ford F-150: Fact or Fiction?

July 30th, 2012

2011 Ford F-150 EcoBoost

The Jaguar XJ and Audi A8 famously use aluminum frames and body panels to help the luxury barges achieve a low weight and improved fuel economy over their steel-wearing brethren.

In those vehicles, aluminum makes sense, and it’s probably the material of the future for cars in their class.

Fullsize American pickups, though, require something a little sturdier. American cowboys like their domestic workhorses because they’re tough, heavy-duty machines built with good old-fashioned steel. No pansy lightweight building materials like those Europeans are using.

Well, cover your ears cowboys, because the F-150 is going aluminum. Maybe.

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Here Come the 30-MPG SUVs

April 30th, 2012
2013 Ford Escape

2013 Ford Escape

Stepping onto a dealer’s lot five years ago and asking for a small SUV that was comfortable, had decent power and returned over 30 mpg would have resulted in a blank stare.

Today, buyers at Chevrolet, Honda, Mazda and Ford dealers can ask that question and will happily be shown the Equinox, CR-V, CX-5 and Escape. Amazingly enough, none of those reach the magic number with the help of a hybrid powertrain.

As of right now, it’s the Ford Escape that has the distinction of being able to say it offers the most fuel-efficient vehicle in the small crossover segment. At least when it comes to vehicles equipped with automatic transmissions.

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Cars Coming Soon: 2013 Ford Explorer Sport

March 29th, 2012

When I heard that Ford would introduce a new Explorer Sport at the New York Auto Show, I immediately had flashbacks to the Explorer Sport Trac of yore. The Sport Trac was like the mullet of cars: SUV in the front, pickup truck in the back. It was ugly and not really good at being an SUV or a pickup.

Why would Ford bring back this abomination and ruin the fantastic new Explorer?

Well, naturally, I misunderstood. The Sport Trac remains firmly lodged in the pages of history. The Explorer Sport is something else entirely. In fact, it probably should have been called the Explorer SHO.

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The Best Engines of 2011

December 9th, 2011

2012 Audi A6

As December rolls on, it’s inevitable that the “Best of 2011″ lists will begin making the rounds. For auto aficionados like us, those are fun lists to look forward to (and create!).

Today we bring you news of the highly anticipated 10 Best Engines list, put together every year around this time by Ward’s Auto. Some of this year’s choices are surprising, but what’s even more surprising is what *didn’t* make the list.

Only one hybrid mill entered the top 10—no electric-drive engines and, even more interesting, no oil burners. So what’s the engine flavor of 2011? Turbocharged!

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Happy Thanksgiving! This Year’s Biggest Automotive Turkey Is…

November 24th, 2011
2012 Volkswagen Passat

Is the Car of the Year a turkey?

Over 45 million turkeys are being savored on American dinner plates today.

Americans love turkey. We love dousing it in gravy, we love it with mashed potatoes, we love it with stuffing and cranberry sauce. Someone has even invented tofu that “tastes” like turkey to satisfy the three people in America who crave the flavor but don’t want the guilt.

Turkey makes us happy. Turkeys make us sleep well. So why did the term “turkey” come to describe something that fails to meet expectations? Who knows. But when a car is labeled as the “Biggest Turkey of the Year,” you can bet it isn’t going to be good.

Keep reading for a look at the vehicle winning this year’s dubious honor.

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