Ford Motor Company is an American multinational automaker headquartered in Dearborn, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit. It was founded by Henry Ford and incorporated on June 16, 1903. The company sells automobiles and commercial vehicles under the Ford brand and luxury cars under the Lincoln brand. In the past it has also produced heavy trucks, tractors and automotive components. Ford owns small stakes in Mazda of Japan and Aston Martin of the United Kingdom. It is listed on the New York Stock Exchange and is controlled by the Ford family, although they have minority ownership.
Ford introduced methods for large-scale manufacturing of cars and large-scale management of an industrial workforce using elaborately engineered manufacturing sequences typified by moving assembly lines; by 1914 these methods were known around the world as Fordism. Ford's former UK subsidiaries Jaguar and Land Rover, acquired in 1989 and 2000 respectively, were sold to Tata Motors in March 2008. Ford owned the Swedish automaker Volvo from 1999 to 2010. In 2011, Ford discontinued the Mercury brand, under which it had marketed entry-level luxury cars in the United States since 1938.
Ford is the second-largest U.S.-based automaker and the fifth-largest in the world based on 2010 vehicle sales. At the end of 2010, Ford was the fifth largest automaker in Europe. Ford is the eighth-ranked overall American-based company in the 2010 Fortune 500 list, based on global revenues in 2009 of $118.3 billion. In 2008, Ford produced 5.532 million automobiles and employed about 213,000 employees at around 90 plants and facilities worldwide.
As of 2012 Ford Motor Company sells a broad range of automobiles under the Ford marque worldwide, and an additional range of luxury automobiles under the Lincoln marque in the United States. The company has sold vehicles under a number of other marques during its history. The Mercury brand was introduced by Ford in 1939, continuing in production until 2011 when poor sales led to its discontinuation. In 1958, Ford introduced the Edsel brand, but poor sales led to its discontinuation in 1960. In 1985, the Merkur brand was introduced in the United States to market products produced by Ford of Europe; it was discontinued in 1989.
Ford acquired the British sports car maker Aston Martin in 1989, later selling it on March 12, 2007, retaining a small minority stake, and bought Volvo Cars of Sweden in 1999, selling it to Zhejiang Geely Holding Group in 2010. In November 2008, it reduced its 33.4% controlling interest in Mazda of Japan to a 13.4% non-controlling interest. On November 18, 2010, Ford reduced their stake further to just 3%, citing the reduction of ownership would allow greater flexibility to pursue growth in emerging markets. Ford and Mazda remain strategic partners through exchanges of technological information and joint ventures, including an American joint venture plant in Flat Rock, Michigan called Auto Alliance. Ford sold the United Kingdom-based Jaguar and Land Rover companies and brands to Tata Motors of India in March 2008.
In 2011, J.D. Power ranked Ford 23rd in initial quality, a drop from fifth in 2010. Consumer Reports magazine likewise decided not to recommend several new Ford SUVs, blaming the Sync entertainment and phone system used.
Sat, 19 Apr 2014 12:02:00 EST
Ford is set to give the burgeoning Chinese market its very own C-segment model, while also reviving one of the brand's more notable nameplates. The new Escort, which will make its world debut at the 2014 Beijing Motor Show will be built in the People's Republic at the Changan Ford joint venture facility.
Sat, 19 Apr 2014 12:01:00 EST
The Escort's exterior is best thought of as a mix of the finer points from the US market Focus and Fusion, with the Aston Martin-ish grille and narrow, wraparound taillights presenting a clean look at either end of the car. It's all fairly true to the concept car from last year's Shanghai Motor Show. That said, this exterior job is almost too clean. There doesn't seem to be a lot of character or substance beyond the typical Ford looks.
There's a similar issue in the cabin - it all looks pretty nice, but the design is rather plain, particularly when viewed alongside the display-filled cabin of a US-spec car. Still, there looks to be a fair amount of space in both the front and back seats, and the trunk isn't exactly tiny, either.
According to Ford, the Chinese SUV segment grew by 49 percent in 2013, and the Blue Oval held a 4.5 percent market share. At the 2014 Beijing Motor Show, Ford is showing the Everest SUV that, while just a concept for now, will go into production in the near future.
Fri, 18 Apr 2014 08:32:00 EST
The Everest is a big, brawny seven-seat SUV that mixes solid, chiseled styling and contemporary Ford design cues. Up front there is an angular version of the trapezoidal grille and sharp, wraparound headlights. The beltline rises in the rear to make the back appear higher than the front. The rear seems just as chiseled, with the taillights resting in jagged scallops. There is no doubt that this concept means to look rugged, and ready for rough roads - the whole thing looks pretty great.
The truck was penned by Ford's Asia Pacific design and engineering team in Australia, and it was first shown in Sydney last year. Ford's JMC joint venture will build the truck for the Chinese market, and it will be sold at Ford dealers there. The Blue Oval isn't hinting at what powers the production version yet, but it reportedly shares some components with the foreign-market Ranger.
In March 2013, Ford announced we'd be getting chassis cab and cutaway versions of the Transit. Since incoming Transit vans will soon be rolling over the grave of the E-Series van, it was assumed that all E-Series models would go six feet under as well. According to a report from PickupTrucks.com, however, that's not the case, the report claiming that the highly modifiable E-350 and E-450 chassis cab and cutaway versions will continue being produced in Avon Lake, Ohio "at least until 2020."
Thu, 17 Apr 2014 08:59:00 EST
Being decades old, the be-cabbed E-Series platform has found its way under an army of heavy-duty shuttle buses, work truck and ambulances. Ford spokeswoman Jessica Enoch verified the production horizon, telling Autoblog that the particular E-Series configuration "are a higher GVWR than the Transit chassis cab and cutaway (available this summer), which is more Class 2 and a new segment for us." So there you have it.
There's something to be said for luxed-out vans. They're cool, and as a means of getting chauffeured about, they're extremely comfortable and far more low key than your typical executive luxury sedan. For the 2014 New York Auto Show, Galpin Auto Sports has shown the potential of the new-for-the-US Ford Transit as an ultra-luxurious people hauler.
Wed, 16 Apr 2014 19:00:00 EST
The Transit Skyliner Concept, which we previewed last week, sports four finely crafted captain's buckets that can be moved into different formations based on need. Want to watch a movie? The seats can be swung around to face a 52-inch screen. Riding along with some business associates? A table can be popped up. There's even a configuration for tailgating.
The materials are, unsurprisingly, pretty plush. The leather seats and wood floors (yes, wood floors in a van) look great, while the trunk and its customized luggage are a nice touch, as well.
The styling changes to the 2015 Ford Focus were shown off at the recent Geneva Motor Show, so what the EV version looks like is not that much of a surprise. Still, the 2015 Focus Electric is making its world debut here at the New York Auto Show, so we wanted to know what changes we are looking at compared to both the internal combustion engine version and the earlier EV models.
Wed, 16 Apr 2014 16:59:00 EST
The exterior visual distinctions between the ICE and EV are minimal, and basically nonexistent from the A-pillar to the rear. Up front, you can see the charge port, of course, but the front fascia has also undergone a bit of an adjustment. The front doesn't have the ICE version's flattened grille and the EV's Ford logo creates a bump in the hood line where none exists on the ICE. The 2015's grille is also different than the one on the 2014 Focus Electric, being slightly smaller (you can see this better if you compare pictures in our new gallery above to these of the 2011 Focus Electric and these of the gas-powered 2015 Focus).
The updated 2015 interior - which we couldn't access ourselves - has things like a new center stack, improved cupholders and is basically identical between the gas and electric models. With the car off, you can't even tell if you're in an EV or ICE, Seema Bardwaj, the US brand manager for the Focus, told AutoblogGreen. The only things that are different, she said, are extra menu screens to show EV powertrain information to the driver.
Ford's long-dormant Escort nameplate returned affixed to a sedan concept at last year's Shanghai Motor Show. While not exactly a beauty, it showed a clean, straightforward take on Ford's current styling. The Blue Oval said at the time that it wanted to create a model that was stylish "but not one that is arrogant or pretentious." Job done. A year later, it looks like the minimalist vehicle might make its production debut at the Beijing Motor Show.
Wed, 16 Apr 2014 13:01:00 EST
Autocar claims that the streetgoing version has been confirmed to it for the upcoming show, but so far, Ford isn't saying. If unveiled, the Escort is likely to be produced locally for the Chinese market with a domestic partner. Powertrain details remain a secret, but it seems highly likely that any production model would use a small three- or four-cylinder engine and front-wheel drive. Sales in other major world markets like ours are unlikely, but a test car was recently spotted in Europe.
Autoblog contacted Ford for confirmation, but the automaker demurred, with a spokesperson saying only, "At the moment, we are not confirming any vehicles planned for the show." It looks like we will have to wait to know for sure.
That handsome fellow you see above is the 2015 Ford Focus sedan. We liked the looks of the 2014 Focus, and the updates for 2015 only improve things to our eyes, with the adoption of the Aston Martin-inspired grille that has been permeating Ford's lineup these last few years. Sweeping, slightly bulbous headlamps join a revised, more demure lower grille opening to round out the styling updates up front. The rest of the car's look is just slightly massaged, including new taillamp clusters that look much like they did last year.
Wed, 16 Apr 2014 08:28:00 EST
New for 2015 is the availability of Ford's 1.0-liter three-cylinder EcoBoost engine, mated exclusively to a six-speed manual transmission. There's also a new SE Sport Package that adds more aggressive suspension tuning, paddle shifters (when equipped with Ford's six-speed dual-clutch automatic) and a few body kit bits and pieces. Rounding out the mechanical changes are an updated electronic steering rack that promises better feel, suspension tweaks to make the ride more comfortable and some software updates designed to make the dual-clutch gearbox better behave itself.
In addition, inside there are a few interior upgrades, as well as some added comfort and safety tech that includes available blind-spot detection and lane-keeping assist, along with other more incremental changes that all add up to a better vehicle. We suggest you check out the official press release below for all the details, but not before scrolling through our image gallery of live shots above.
Ford has done it again. Like in April of 1964, there is once again an all-new Mustang Convertible sitting on the observation deck of New York City's Empire State Building. This has been in the making for a little while, with the first report that Ford would recreate the sky-high publicity stunt coming out a few weeks back.
Wed, 16 Apr 2014 00:03:00 EST
The process of getting the Mustang up there wasn't exactly easy. A Troy, MI-based company chopped up the new droptop, a necessary evil to get the Mustang on the Empire State Building's only freight elevator that runs to the 86th floor observation deck. But it was slightly more involved than just taking the car apart. The company, DST, built a mockup of the ESB's freight elevators, and then practiced its cuts on a second pre-production Mustang Convertible (measure twice, cut once).
The result of all this work are the images you see above. Yes, sitting in the crisp, morning air of midtown Manhattan, over 1,000 feet up, is this brilliant, Triple Yellow Mustang. Take a look up top for our gallery of images from today's event. You can also scroll down for videos and images of the process leading up to the ESB debut.
Fifty years ago this week, Ford debuted the first-ever Mustang at the New York World's Fair. And to celebrate, the Blue Oval is offering up this special, 50th Anniversary Edition 2015 Mustang, which makes its debut at the New York Auto Show. It'll be a seriously limited affair, with only 1,964 examples of the special edition Mustang slated to be produced (the number chosen to coincide with the 'Stang's first year in production). But for those who raise their hands for the 50th Anniversary package, there's a pretty sweet package in store.
Tue, 15 Apr 2014 15:45:00 EST
The 50th Anniversary Edition is based on the 2015 Mustang GT with the Performance Pack, and is only available in two colors: Kona Blue, or Wimbledon White (pictured). The car also comes fully loaded - the only option for buyers to choose is the transmission. Should you opt for the six-speed automatic, you'll get a limited-slip rear differential with a 3.55:1 final-drive ratio (the 50th Anniversary car is also the only way to get a slushbox-equipped 'Stang with the Performance Pack). Selecting the six-speed manual 'box will net you a Torsen differential with a 3.73:1 ratio. All 50th Anniversary cars will be powered by Ford's 5.0-liter, naturally aspirated V8, estimated to produce more than 420 horsepower and 390 pound-feet of torque in the 2015 Mustang.
Inside, there's a cashmere-stitched, leather-wrapped steering wheel, with a similar detail found on the instrument panel, shift boot, door inserts, seats, and center armrest. Two-tone leather/black upholstery is also part of the 50th Anniversary package, and of course, there's a special logo on the seats.
It was 1966 when Chevrolet launched its challenger to the wildly successful Ford Mustang, the Camaro. While the competition between the two brands was already healthy, the arrival of the Camaro set off one of the most intense, model-to-model rivalries in the industry.
That competitive spirit hasn't stopped Chevy and the Camaro from wishing Ford's iconic muscle car a Happy 50th Birthday as the Ford's April 17 anniversary rolls around. These two cars have been linked over the years, and while the rivalry took a break for a few years in the 2000s, today's competition between the Camaro and Mustang is as fierce as it's ever been.
You might recall that this friendliness when it comes to major milestones isn't too rare. Ford put on quite a display for General Motors' hundredth anniversary back in 2008. As the Camaro's fiftieth birthday approaches in 2016, we wouldn't be surprised to see the Mustang sending its best wishes to its Bowtie rival.