The new Ford Escape goes hands free

Have you ever had your arms filled with groceries, only to encounter that opening your trunk has quickly become the hardest task in the world?

There’s an answer for that.

Ford’s social website has a “Your Ideas” section, where fans and Ford owners can contribute to perfecting Ford’s vehicles. One of the more popular suggestions: a hands-free power liftgate.

So what exactly does that entail?

What if we told you that the liftgate opens by sensing a kicking motion underneath the center of the rear bumper? And to close it back up, just kick again! Imagine not having to do the “find my keys and not drop my groceries” dance every time you go to the store! Well, now you don’t have to, because Ford has made it a reality on the all-new Ford Escape.

These two sensors in the rear bumper will detect the motion, but does have a safeguard against other things that may accidentally set off the sensor, such as animals or bumps in the road. Also, the height of the liftgate can be programmed or adjusted manually.

The new Escape will go on sale next spring.

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Shelby GT500 gets an upgrade!

Not that the Shelby needed any improving…but Ford has decided to do so anyways. So let’s pop that hood, and take a look at how Ford has decided to improve the 2013 Shelby GT500. 

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1. Power. Ford officially announced that the GT500 will produce 662 horsepower from its aluminum 5.8 liter V8. This pushes it into direct competition with the world’s most exclusive exotics.

2. It’s all about the Torque. The 2013 Shelby GT500 has 631 pounds of torque. And like a true muscle car, low-end torque is available as soon as you touch the pedal.

3. In the 2011 Shelby 2011, Ford reduced the weight of the vehicle. However, since the engine has grown from 550 to 662, you would think the weight would jump a little bit. Not the case here. The 2013 GT500 gains only 30 pounds from the 2011 model, weighing in at 3,850 lbs. With the car remaining relatively light, you all know what that means.

4. IMPROVED MILES PER GALLON! Hurray! This model actually improves efficiency over the precious, even with all the extra power! Granted, it’s minimal, but the fact that you can drive one of these bad boys without stressing about gas prices is amazing. It beats the Chevy Camaro ZL1 by 5mlg, and more than 80 horsepower. It’s also the most fuel efficient vehicle in America with more than 550 horsepower.

5. Last, but not least, there’s better aerodynamics and handling. The best feature of the 2013 GT500 could very well be the balanced performance as a sports car, not just a muscle car. With a new splitter and front fascia that directs airflow 33% more effectively at 160mph, the aerodynamics have dramatically improved. Launch control, Bilstein adjustable damping, and AdvanceTrac stability control will all make this beauty more of an all-around performance car than ever before :)

Ford. Moving forward. 

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MyFord Touch

The Ford SYNC® and MyFord Touch® connectivity systems are resonating with buyers, ranking as an important part of their vehicle purchase decision. In fact, 56 percent of drivers of 2011 and 2012 models said in owner surveys that SYNC and MyFord Touch were important to their purchase decision. The popular and flexible systems are receiving an upgrade, launching on 2013 Ford Taurus and Flex, as well as for current customers with eligible systems.

For current U.S. customers, Ford will mail out MyFord Touch and MyLincoln Touch upgrade packages that include a USB flash drive with the updated software, a notification letter, detailed instructions for the 60-minute download and an updated user guide. Navigation-equipped vehicle owners also will receive an updated SD card with all-new, updated map data. If preferred, customers also can elect to take their vehicle to a Ford or Lincoln dealer for installation of the upgrade.

There are three videos in the playlist above that share more information about the features and changes in this upgrade. As capable and popular as MyFord Touch is now, the flexibility of the underlying SYNC software platform allows for regular updates and upgrades as the technology evolves.

The touch screen interface has been enhanced with simpler graphics and bolder text that is easier to use. The response time of the touch screen is now much faster so drivers can tap controls and focus on driving. Already popular voice controls now provide even better recognition so drivers can tell their cars what to do, keeping their eyes on the road and hands on the wheel.

In addition to the simplified interface and faster performance, Ford engineers added new features including better phone compatibility, support for tablet computers and Audible audiobooks, improved navigation maps and destination entry.

For more information about SYNC and MyFord Touch, please visit ford.com.

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Ford at the Chicago Auto Show

Check out some Ford vehicles at the 2012 Chicago Auto Show!!

2012 FORD MUSTANG: Mustang, the original pony car, prances into 2012 with American style, powerful engines and outstanding fuel economy across the lineup. Available as 2+2 coupe and convertible, the rear-wheel drive Mustang is offered in V6, GT, Boss 302 and Shelby GT500 trim levels. Engine selections range from a 3.7-liter V6 that delivers 305 horsepower and 280 lb-ft of torque, up to the Shelby with its supercharged 5.4L V8, generating 550 hp and 510 lb-ft of torque. Engines are available with six-speed manual or new six-speed automatic transmissions. For aerodynamic improvements, updates comprise a new front fascia, a taller air dam and added rear decklid seal. New illuminated dual visor vanity mirrors, a universal garage door opener and multipurpose sun visor storage are available. Two new optional packages, the Reverse Sensing System and Security Package and HID Headlights and Security Package debut for 2012, as does a unique exterior paint shade called, Lava Red Metallic. The 2012 Mustang offers selectable steering that tailors the driving experience to fit the driver’s needs, and on the convertible, enhanced structural rigidity.

2013 FORD FUSION: Featuring a fresh face, sweeping lines to the rear and thin roof pillars, signify that the all-new Ford Fusion is nimble and light on its feet. Fusion brings the broadest selection of fuel-efficient powertrains in the midsize car segment. It presents hybrid and plug-in hybrid alternatives, a pair of EcoBoost four-cylinder engines, a normally aspirated four-cylinder engine, an automatic start stop system to shut off the engine at stationary idle, front-wheel and all-wheel drive applications, and a choice between automatic and manually shifted six-speed transmissions. Topping the fuel-efficiency ladder is the Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid, aimed to deliver more than 100 MPGe, a mile per gallon equivalency metric for electrified vehicles. Fusion is offered in S, SE and Titanium series, with the latest technologies offered, including Blind Spot Information System with cross-traffic alert, lane keeping technology, adaptive cruise control, active park assist, and voice control MyFord Touch system. Inside, the new Fusion offers a sporty, driver-oriented environment with five-passenger seating, and a large trunk for luggage or groceries.

2012 F-150 SVT Raptor- The Raptor demonstrates Ford’s focus on raising the bar for off-road capabilities in a production truck, offering customers more of the tools they need to tackle everything off the beaten track. New Torsen front differential is one such technology that increases grip significantly on the front end of the truck and improves its capabilities in handling obstacles, slippery conditions and steep grades. Class-exclusive and patent-pending new front camera system makes its debut on F-150 SVT Raptor, enabling drivers in off-road terrain to see what’s directly in front of the vehicle, even when their view from the driver’s seat might be blocked. The 2012 F-150 SVT Raptor also adds style upgrades with a new wheel design, unique bodyside graphic and upgraded optional interior package with aluminum accents.

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Ford Model T

Restoring a 1950s hot rod is made much easier by locating one that’s had plenty of exposure at shows and in contemporary magazine articles, and that’s just what Richard Riddell did, tracking down and restoring the Wally Olson/Bill Scott 1927 Ford Model T that came to be known as the Black Widow. It’s now for sale on Hemmings.com looking just as spectacular as it did in the Fifties. Beauty, ain’t she?

 

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Track Apps giving real-time performance metrics

It may not be the type of thing that would be used for everyday driving, but owners of the 2013 Ford Mustang will have a little something extra for days that they want to take their car out for some exercise – Track Apps. Displayed on a 4.2-inch LCD “productivity screen” located between the tachometer and speedometer, Track Apps will provide enthusiast drivers with real-time data on their pony car’s performance.

Using sensors already present in the vehicle, the technology will measure and display information on things such as:

  • g forces pulled when turning
  • acceleration times for 0-30, 0-60 and 0-100 mph (48, 97 and 161 km/h), along with eighth-mile and quarter-mile figures
  • a timer that starts when the car accelerates from a standstill, plus a drag strip-like countdown timer
  • braking performance for 60-0 or 100-0 mph

Drivers can also access records of their all-time best performances, by navigating the menu using a five-way button on the steering wheel.

Although not part of the Track Apps feature, other data displayed on the productivity screen will relate to engine operation, trip calculations, fuel economy, and other vehicle system information.

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Coffee Cup Warnings

Ford is introducing new lane keeping technologies, including a system that can help detect drowsy driver, in order to help them stay alert.

This Driver Alert System is designed to help alert drowsy drivers by monitoring the vehicle’s movement compared to lane markings that are tracked by a camera mounted on the windshield. If this system detects an inconsistent driving pattern, a first-level chime will sound and a coffee cup warning will appear on the dashboard. If ignored, another warning and chime is issued. Drivers can monitor their condition on the dashboard at any time, even without receiving warnings. Once the yellow warning range is reached, it’s time to rest asap.

Sensitivity and other settings can be adjusted between normal and increased, and must be turned on by the driver. They are, by default, always on until turned off.

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