Found On Road Dead

An old, worn out, contentious, Chevy Driver’s, acronym which actually may come to pass?

I thought it was:


What prompted the thought lmo? I’ve always thought Ford to be the strongest of the big 3.

BTW, my Focus has been treating me very well. After I had trouble starting it a year ago (corroded relay contact), I haven’t had the slightest trouble.

Ford has the best trucks on the market. And the F Series were at one point was the top selling Trucks in the world.

They may be the best trucks on the market but they sure aren’t selling, or securing their employees jobs either. They just cut how many jobs and already made plans to make more cuts in the near future with their “Way Forward” plan. “Last week, Ford announced a revised turnaround plan that will cut $5 billion in annual costs by the end of 2008 by slashing another 10,000 white-collar workers on top of 4,000 cuts made this year and offering buyouts to all 75,000 unionized employees. Ford also wants to sell its Aston-Martin luxury sports car brand and it is reviewing its other Premier Automotive Group brands, Jaguar, Volvo and Land Rover. Meanwhile, Toyota is adding jobs. Toyota plans to add 8,000 engineers by 2010.” What about the 3.9 billion dollar loss reported from last year, 20 times greater than the loss of 200 million dollars reported in 2004. Their best “selling” product the F-150 hasn’t been selling due to the oil situation. They kept pounding out the F-150 during the major oil price increase. More toyota’s have been purchased due to the fact of price increases at the pump but yet the F-150 kept rolling off the lines. Toyota surpassed the Ford Motor Company to take the #2 slot as the world’s largest automotive company behind GM. I wouldn’t be surprised if they pass GM as well. Ford has the worst fuel efficiency of any automaker in America. Then Bill Ford stepped down as CEO to have Boeing’s Alan Mulally take over because FORD needs more leadership. At least Bill Ford realized that things weren’t heading in the right direction.

Sorry to ramble on but Chevy just introduced the 100,000 mile / 5 year warranty program because they acknowledged the fact that the quality of their cars just plain sucked. They copied the Hyundai’s plan. When Hyundai first went to a 100,000-mile program, it was at a time when they were having trouble getting banks to offer car loans on their products because they had no resale value. A warranty helps improve that over time. It gives people confidence that if something major went wrong, it would be covered. Chevy is only introducing the 100,000 mile warranty program because of the mechanical defects on their automobiles. Why not build them right the first time?

Chevy made the same mistake that Ford did in producing mass quanities of the Silverado during the recent oil crisis. Chevy ended up giving them away for free to the Iraqi armed forces. Now they are sitting in Iraq waiting for the Iraqi armed forces to get their act together.

I won’t even get into the HEMI issue. Talk about stupid marketing during an oil crisis!

In my opinion “The Big 3” gets two thumbs down for relied sales on larger fuel inefficient vehicles.

Case and point american cars are of poor quality.

Two points:

  1. I think the perception of quality is what you are really getting at ecodesign. Even if the big 3 built a car that would be better than a Camry, the perception of building crap would still linger for years. This ship can’t be turned around overnight…the recent production cuts are just an admission of the huge task that Ford and GM face.

  2. Room for two? What does everyone think of these two:

North America’s Ford Fusion

Europe’s 2007 Ford Mondeo

To me, the Fusion is a decent car, but the Mondeo is the kind of car that Ford wants to be perceived as building. It looks like competition for BMW (which it is in Europe), not Yugo. Of course, we will never see it America. Who would pay decent cash for a Ford?

The Fusion is a nice looking car though…

I’m not sure in what country the Mondeo competes with the a 3 series, but not in these time zones…

In Europe, you can buy a BMW 320 with a 2.0 L four cylinder, the same size as my Ford Focus engine. The price starts at 20,000 pounds. The Mondeo starts at a lower price, 15000 pounds, but gets up to 25,000 pounds.

It’s a bit less direct, but one could argue a Honda Accord V6 fully loaded competes with a base BMW 3 series. They cost about the same in the US. But, that comparison makes me wonder why anyone buys Honda Accord V6’s that are fully loaded…

My apologies Mr-914 for lighting this fire, and then not tending it; I’ve been working out of town.

ecodesignfive basically put the words in my mouth when s/he wrote:

At least Bill Ford realized that things weren’t heading in the right direction … slashing another 10,000 white-collar workers on top of 4,000 cuts made this year and offering buyouts to all 75,000 unionized employees. Ford also wants to sell its Aston-Martin luxury sports car brand and it is reviewing its other Premier Automotive Group brands, Jaguar, Volvo and Land Rover.

BTW, I have nothing against Ford(s). I loved a '66 Lotus Cortina MkI (my avatar) to death until ‘fate’ necessitated its sale. And I currently drive an '89 Ford Escort and '89 Siverado. Wifey prefers ‘ferin’ cars and thrashes a M-B CLK320 to work … so we’re all over the market.

I have a '97 Ford Escort, just turned over 260,000 km (about 160,000 miles). It’s still on its first clutch and transmission. It’s never needed to be in the shop, except for the parking brake cable loosening (and, of course, regular maintenance). Seems pretty reliable to me.

Of course, this is until you look up the manufacturing process of that car, and find that basically every moving part in the car is a Mazda 626.

Regarding the earlier posts, the Mondeo looks surprisingly good for a Ford - much lighter and cleaner than the NA stuff. I think that someone, somewhere, thinks that the north american market won’t accept a car if it’s too delicate looking (maybe it’s true) and overcompensates…with giant slat grilles, chunky wheel-wells, fake bolts and rivets, and giant bubbly surfaces.

Whatever happened to the days when a car was tightly wrapped around its chassis? Even Mustangs, when they first came out, looked like they were more pulled together than the current model.

Ford suffers from a design implementation problem. Ford has great designs. The company chooses to shuffle in designs like new pizzas. Maybe they’ll like stuffed crust, meat lovers or taco. It must be frustrating designing a car that is the equivalent of a 3-series BMW, then having a product manager in Dearborn say something like, “No, we don’t want that in the US market, because it will take market share away from Jaguar and Mazda.”

Like many companies Ford also changes names too quickly. Why is Fusion better than Taurus? I can tell you why Taurus is better than Fusion. Here is an example: Buy the completely redesigned Taurus. The name that brought aerodynamic styling to the forefront 20 years ago, the number one selling sedan in the USA, is back on top with Ford’s “new edge” design principal.

What can you say for Fusion? Buy a Ford Fusion. It’s not just a razor blade or a type of nuclear reactivity, it’s also a car!

The name changing is a result of poor product planning. The Taurus was a great car at one time, but the last generation was aorund for 4-5 years too many. Now the name means “the mid size car you buy if you can’t afford something good”. If you do research into customer’s view of names, you will find that customers won’t often recollect on the good old version of something, instead they will remember the recent bad memory.

In Casino Royale, Bond shows up driving a 2007 Ford Mondeo and the audience LAUGHED.
I don’t think humor is what Ford was going for in the product placement.
Luckily Ford owns the Austin Martin that drew gasps from the same crowd.

Great movie by the way!

I’m anxious to see what they’ve done with the “Bond” brand.

CG: Was this an American audience? In Europe, both the BMW 3 series and Mondeo are viewed as more generic than in the US.

FORD required to use all U.S. assets to secure financing…

Dearborn-based Ford lost $7 billion during the first nine months of the year and has said it won’t return to profitability until 2009.

… downgraded Ford’s senior unsecured rating to “Caa1,” seven notches below investment grade, from “B3.”


The Detroit News