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.
Tue, 16 Sep 2014 17:46:00 EST
Let's get this unfortunate though important tidbit out of the way right off the bat: The Ford S-Max isn't sold in the United States, and it's not coming here, at least not anytime soon. And so it's with our European friends in mind that we share this information about the next-gen S-Max (previewed about a year ago in concept form) that is set to debut all across Europe next year and will be shown off at the upcoming Paris Motor Show. Now, moving on...
Mon, 15 Sep 2014 17:00:00 EST
As with the first-gen S-Max, the new model will boast seating for seven passengers, along with a decent amount of storage space, all packed into a relatively reasonably sized package. Powering the front wheels (or optionally all four) will be the buyer's choice of EcoBoost gasoline-turbocharged or turbo-diesel four-cylinder engines along with automatic and manual transmission options. Included in the mix is a new 1.5-liter EcoBoost with 160 horsepower, though the 240-horse 2.0 is likely to be seen as the headliner.
There are all kinds of new technologies on offer, ranging from Adaptive Steering to Dynamic LED Headlamps with Glare-Free Highbeams, and it's all housed inside new, more sleekly designed bodywork riding atop a chassis with new suspension architecture designed to make the S-Max a people-hauler that's still fun to drive. For all the details, we suggest you scroll down below to read through Ford's official press release.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has opened a preliminary investigation on the 2011-2013 Ford Fiesta because the regulator has received 61 complaints from drivers, including one claim of an injury, about the doors on the subcompacts failing to latch and sometimes even flying open while driving. NHTSA has estimated that the problem could affect as many as 205,000 vehicles.
Mon, 15 Sep 2014 15:32:00 EST
NHTSA is still gathering further data about the problem, but looking at the complaints so far, both front and rear doors appear to be potentially involved with the alleged failures. Among the reports, there are 12 claiming that the door opened while driving. Several also indicate the "Door Ajar" warning illuminating during this problem. The one purported injury happened when someone attempted to shut the door, and it bounced back.
Ford spokesperson Kelli Felker told Autoblog via email, "We are cooperating with NHTSA on this investigation, as we always do." Scroll down to read the report from NHTSA.
Looking at a Ford Focus? These days you can get it as a five-door hatch, a four-door sedan, or... that's all. European buyers don't even get our sedan, but they do get a wagon. And while the three-door hatch, two-door coupe and two-door cabrio have long since ended production, buyers around the world can also get the company's larger C-Max. And now, like the Focus upon which it's based, Ford is preparing to roll out a new version.
Mon, 15 Sep 2014 13:59:00 EST
The tall wagon (or small minivan, depending on your perspective) is being treated to what Ford says is "an extreme makeover." Details to accompany the teaser image above remain few and far between, but following the spy shots we recently posted, it looks destined for some of the same visual updates as Ford rolled out on the 2015 Focus, with "even more refinement, practicality and technology."
Like the Mercedes B-Class, which is only available Stateside as an EV, American buyers can only get the C-Max in electrified form, either as the C-Max Hybrid or C-Max Energi. Overseas buyers, however, will be able to choose from a range of powertrain options and two wheelbase lengths - the longer of which boasts seven seats and the Grand C-Max name. (Remember when Chrysler did the same with its minivans?) Both are set to debut on September 17, so watch this space. After that, we'll expect to see it on display at the Paris Motor Show.
Alan Mulally will not be following his successful term as president and CEO of Ford Motor Company with a run at an even bigger presidency. Rumors that the 68-year-old former Boeing exec would make a run at the White House sprouted after his apparent dodging of a reporter's questions about a potential candidacy during a forum in Indianapolis.
Sun, 14 Sep 2014 09:01:00 EST
"I really think it's important that we all pull together. We really need to pull together around a compelling vision for our country and a comprehensive strategy to do it and work together. We really need to do it," Mulally said at the conference, according to The Detroit News.
He's since clarified by saying, "[I'm] honored at the suggestion, but that is not a role I am considering."
To quote Harry Hogge (played by Robert Duvall) in Days of Thunder, "rubbin, son, is racin'." That can mean some unfortunate damage to high-end racing machinery, which may be repaired easily enough in stock car racing, but when it comes to vintage racing, the stakes can be that much higher. And yet incidents do occur, like at this weekend's Goodwood Revival.
Fri, 12 Sep 2014 13:31:00 EST
Among the many competitors taking part in the retro racing event in England was none other than Rowan Atkinson, the actor perhaps best known for playing Mr. Bean. Driving a classic Ford Falcon Sprint in the Shelby Cup event, Atkinson (pictured above at the 2012 revival) reportedly crashed head-on into another car on track.
According to reports, the two cars up spun out. The driver in between managed to avoid a pile-up, but Atkinson couldn't steer clear and hit the obstructing vehicle. Fortunately Rowan walked away unscathed (and, we imagine, in a humorous manner), but while we don't know how extensive the damage was to the Falcon, it was enough to take it out of the race.
Ford is recalling about 70,209 examples of the 2005-2008 Ford Escape Hybrid and the 2006-2008 Mercury Mariner Hybrid because the cooling pumps for their hybrid systems could fail.
Tue, 09 Sep 2014 19:58:00 EST
According to the company's defect notice, it's possible for the original "Motor Electronics Coolant (MEC) Pump" to wear out and fail, which would could cause the hybrid system to overheat. If this happens, the vehicle goes into a safety mode that takes away most or all of its power. However, braking and steering still operate normally. After cooling down, the affected models restart normally. The company says that it's not aware of any accidents or injuries related to this problem.
Ford will begin repairing the vehicles in late October, and dealers will be installing improved, brushless pumps on the affected models at no charge to owners. If drivers had their pumps fail before this recall, they can contact Ford for a possible reimbursement. Scroll down to read the recall announcement from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration or download the full defect notice as a PDF, here.
Fri, 05 Sep 2014 20:04:00 EST
Vaughn Gittin Jr. spends a great deal of his workday going sideways, but he's usually alone in the endeavor. For a guy that is clearly a dog lover, we imagine that can get a bit lonely.
That won't be a problem for Gittin in this latest video, which features the racer hanging out with his good pal Brody (a dog) and everyone's favorite hot hatch, the Ford Fiesta ST.
There's an evergreen debate among auto enthusiasts about whether they would prefer to have the latest and greatest car of today or a certified classic from yesteryear. What if you had to further define that, though, and the choice was between a brand new 2015 Subaru Legacy or a turbocharged Datsun 240Z with a hatch that wouldn't close? Roadkill aimed to find out that and more in one of its best videos to date.
Fri, 05 Sep 2014 15:45:00 EST
According to the hosts, Subaru came to them, handed over some money and challenged Roadkill's project cars against its latest Legacy. The result is every bit as good (or better) than any automotive-themed show you could find on television.
Things start simple with a figure-eight race in a rodeo arena with the Subaru taking on Roadkill's 1968 Ford Ranchero, originally built for ice racing. From there the Legacy races a 1968 Dodge Charger with no windows around and off-road rally stage. Finally, the Subie goes head-to-head against the Rotsun, the aforementioned turbocharged 240Z, through an abandoned neighborhood. Plus, there's a bonus drag race challenging them all.
The Ford C-Max hatchback looks to be getting a few cosmetic updates, as evidenced in this latest set of spy photos. Like the smaller Focus, which also received a nip/tuck for the 2015 model year, the C-Max appears to be getting a revised front fascia with slimmer headlamps and a more, shall we say, Aston Martin-like grille. Around back, there looks to be a new bumper with redesigned taillamps, as well.
Tue, 02 Sep 2014 18:30:00 EST
In other markets, the C-Max people-mover is available with a range of powertrains, but here in the US, it exists either as a traditional gas-electric or plug-in hybrid. The C-Max's fuel economy has been a particular topic of interest lately, with its official fuel economy ratings having been lowered twice since the vehicle's launch. Sales initially suffered a bit following this fiasco, though numbers have since leveled out. It's unclear if Ford is working on any powertrain tweaks for the updated C-Max seen here, however.
Ford has likely spruced up the hatch's interior, as well, though we don't have photos of that at this time. Mum's the word on when we'll see the new C-Max, but our best guess is that it'll arrive sometime in the next year.
The ongoing heavy-duty truck battle between Ford and Ram is showing no signs of slowing down. The Blue Oval is trying to remove at least one point of contention between the two brands by testing its 2015 F-450 Super Duty using the Society of Automotive Engineers J2807 towing standard, which Ram also uses. In the new evaluation, the F-450 is rated at a max towing capacity of 31,200 pounds. That's an identical amount as under Ford's own, previous test.
"We leave no doubt with customers that the F-450 pickup truck has best-in-class towing of 31,200 pounds - whether tested using our own internal towing standards or SAE J2807," said Raj Nair, Ford group vice president for Global Product Development, in the company's release.
At the same time, Ford is also changing how it calculates the F-450's payload. Instead of using its minimum curb weight as before, the brand is now using the truck's base curb weight. The revision lowers the pickup's rating to 5,300 pounds, compared to 5,450 pounds previously. The company said in its announcement that the reason for this is "aligning its payload rating practices with other manufacturers to make it easier for customers to compare vehicles." General Motors made a similar switch for its pickups in August.