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Ford has been in hot water in Australia ever since it announced plans to end local production of the Falcon and Territory SUV. Besides canceling a model that is to Oz what the Mustang is to America, the end of production means more than a few folks will be out of work.
Keen to prove that it has a plan for the market, Ford has unveiled the Aussie-penned Everest Concept, a rough-and-tumble, seven-seat SUV. While not a direct replacement for the aging Territory (that role will eventually be filled by either the Edge or Flex, according to Car Advice) it's an indication from Ford's brass that the Blue Oval is still committed to Australia.
To prove that fact, Alan Mullaly, Mark Fields, Jim Farley and regional execs descended on Sydney for the debut of the new concept. Ford's Australian president and CEO, Bob Graziano, said of the Everest, "Our customers, our employees and Australia can be assured that we're connected to the nation and committed to our customers through terrific products with class-leading technologies."
New York Auto Show, Jim Farley interview, 2014 Chevrolet Silverado fuel economy, Ford fuel economy app challenge
Episode #327 of the Autoblog Podcast is here, and this week, Dan Roth, Zach Bowman and Jeff Ross talk about this year's New York Auto Show, Chevrolet's latest assault in the pickup truck fuel economy battle, and Ford's reward for developing a better fuel economy app. Dan also has an interview with Ford's Jim Farley about the future of Lincoln. We wrap with your questions and emails, and for those of you who hung with us live on our UStream channel, thanks for taking the time. Keep reading for our Q&A module for you to scroll through and follow along, too. Thanks for listening!
Autoblog Podcast #327:
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.
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.