The Sound of Science: Ford Focus ST Features Active Sound Symposer

May 27, 2012

Discerning sports compact drivers not only want their engines to sing, they want them to roar. Ford engineers made sure the new Focus ST does both, with the help of a new twist on an existing technology.

Ford engineers added a special sound tube – called a sound symposer – to amplify the throaty frequencies enthusiasts crave in performance cars. Engineers worked to naturally amplify the specific lower range of engine frequencies found between 200 and 450 Hz that are most pleasing to performance enthusiasts through the use of a composite “paddle” that vibrates with intake air pulses.

While the sound tube concept has been used on Mustang in the past, the sound symposer used in Focus ST is unique because of its electronically controlled valve that opens and closes based on driver inputs – engine speed, accelerator pedal position and gear selection. In lower gears, the valve is mapped more aggressively, while in higher gears the effect is dialed back to enable quieter cruising. This isn’t possible with conventional, passive sound tubes. Part of the reason Ford made these changes is that on Focus ST, for the first time, the symposer is attached directly to the intake manifold (as opposed to between the manifold and air intake).

“For ST drivers, it’s not enough to have a car that is fast or feels fast. It also has to sound fast,” says Christopher Myers, Air Induction System engineer. “Part of this is the design of the exhaust, but we went further and engineered the symposer both to dial up the nice sounds the EcoBoost delivers under the hood but dial back the interior sound volumes at part throttle.

“The turbo gives us great power across the rev range, but it presents a special challenge from a sound perspective as it absorbs much of the beautiful engine music,” Myers adds. “The symposer helps us bring the throaty sounds that drivers love.”

The secret to getting this right was developing the perfect paddle to naturally amplify the ST’s great engine sound. Ford engineers tested several different paddles. Eventually, the supplier developed a paddle with the correct stiffness that yielded the best acoustic response and ultimately, the best “flutter” and low-end frequency sound.

An international team from suppliers of the intake manifold, battery tray, electrical hardware and software, and electrical connectors came together with Ford to accelerate development of the symposer. All in all, 30 engineers from five countries had to balance NVH, materials, manufacturing and assembly considerations to bring the symposer to life.

“The sound symposer gives the Focus ST an aural split personality,” says Lisa Schoder, Ford Focus ST Marketing manager. “In everyday driving, the car is composed and refined. But under full throttle, we unleash the sonic hounds. It’s a beauty and a beast.”

Among the more visible options will be the Tangerine Scream metallic color that will be offered exclusively on Focus ST as well as race-inspired Recaro seats with matching color accents.

More information regarding Focus ST can be found at http://www.ford.com/cars/focus/focusst/ or https://www.facebook.com/OfficialFordST.

Fuller Ford offers Lifetime Free Oil Changes on ALL new vehicle purchases – in stock or factory ordered. Additionally, Fuller Ford offers the convenience of onsite Penske Truck Rental. Whether you are coming from Ohio, Kentucky, or Indiana, we are conveniently located right off of I-75, just west of downtown Cincinnati. We are Cincinnati’s ONLY downtown dealer! Check out our entire inventory at www.fullerisford.com.

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New Ford Fusion Redefines Midsize Sedan Expectations with Unprecedented Suite of Driver Assist Technologies

May 25, 2012

New Ford Fusion Redefines Midsize Sedan Expectations with Unprecedented Suite of Driver Assist Technologies

The all-new 2013 Ford Fusion leapfrogs the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord with an unprecedented suite of active driver assist technologies usually found only in luxury cars costing twice as much.

A package of radar, ultrasonic, optical and motion sensors adds a new level of convenience for midsize sedan customers by transitioning beyond passive safety technology to offer drivers Lane-Keeping System, Driver Alert System, Blind Spot Information System (BLIS ®), active park assist, cross-traffic alert, adaptive cruise control, collision warning and a rear view camera.

“These new sensing technologies help extend the driver’s own senses, providing a level of assistance never before available to the family sedan buyer,” said Adrian Whittle, Ford Fusion chief engineer. “The new Fusion launches this year with these advanced technologies – making them more affordable and available than ever before.”

Fusion’s suite of driver assist technologies are the result of the addition of new sensors, including cameras and radar combined with existing technologies, such as electric power-assisted steering (EPAS) and data from the anti-lock braking and stability control systems.

Lane-Keeping System

Lane-Keeping System uses a forward-facing camera that can scan the road surface for lane markings. The Lane-Keeping System can evaluate if the car is drifting out of its lane and then alert the driver by vibrating the steering wheel. If the driver does not respond to the vibrations, the system provides steering torque to nudge the car back toward the center of the lane.

To view video about the Lane-Keeping System, click here: http://youtu.be/LFB-xOaTAKo

Driver Alert System

Driver Alert uses the front-facing camera to detect a pattern of vehicle motion consistent with a drowsy driver, and provides a series of alerts to suggest the driver stop and rest for a while. The visual alert includes a coffee cup icon appearing in the instrument cluster display indicating that pulling off the road and taking a break is a good idea. In a survey conducted by AAA Foundation, more than 40 percent of Americans acknowledge they have fallen asleep or nodded off while driving.

Pull-Drift Compensation

Pull-Drift Compensation is built into the electric power-assisted steering to counter the effects of steeply crowned roads or steady crosswinds. It can detect if the car is changing direction even if the steering angle sensor indicates the driver is not commanding this change. The Pull-Drift control then uses EPAS to provide gradual steering corrections that keep the car moving to where the driver wants to go.

Adaptive cruise control with collision warning

Adaptive cruise control uses a radar sensor that measures the distance and speed to the vehicle ahead.

With this extra information, the same engine power reduction and brake application techniques that are used to limit wheel spin by the traction control system can now be used to automatically slow the car and maintain a safe following distance when the adaptive cruise control is active. If the sensors detect the following distance is shrinking too quickly and a collision is likely, the system will provide a visual and audio alert so the driver can respond by steering or braking.

Active park assist

With available active park assist, the electric power-assisted steering and ultrasonic sensors at the corners of the car work in concert to help make parallel parking a breeze. The sensors measure the gap between parked cars to see if there is enough room, and then the car is automatically steered into the space. The driver just has to apply the accelerator and brake.

Blind Spot Information System with cross-traffic alert

No matter how careful drivers are, the physical constraints of sitting inside a car means there always will be places they cannot see. Rearview mirrors help, but the Fusion is available with radar sensors in the rear corners that can monitor the spaces beside and just behind the car.

On the road, these sensors trigger a warning light in the mirror indicating there is another vehicle in the blind spot the driver may not be able to see when changing lanes. When backing out of a parking space, these same sensors can see vehicles coming down the aisle while the back-up camera provides a view directly behind the rear bumper.

What’s next?

The driver assist systems in the new Fusion mark Ford’s near-term next steps in the development of future mobility technologies. Sensing systems similar to what will be installed on the new Fusion are the foundational hardware that will help further progress active safety technology in the future including autonomous assisted driving in the long-term.

“The new Fusion is a showcase of how we will use sensors and vehicle data to enhance the driver’s own capabilities when behind the wheel,” said Paul Mascarenas, chief technical officer and vice president of Ford Research and Innovation. “Driver assist technologies will continue to provide increasing levels of convenience in the near-term. In the future, they also will help us manage issues such as traffic congestion and CO2 reduction.”

At the recent Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, Bill Ford, executive chairman of Ford Motor Company, outlined the company’s Blueprint for Mobility that presents the development cadence for future active safety systems including vehicle-to-vehicle communications and autonomous assistance technology.

To listen to the speech, click here: http://www.mobileworldlive.com/mwc12-ford

The story behind the new Fusion

For more on the new Ford Fusion, check out http://FordFusionStory.com, a special mobile site featuring articles, videos and graphics that are easily shareable directly from a smartphone, tablet or computer browser to Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and blogs.

Come in to Fuller Ford and order your 2013 Fusion today! Fuller Ford offers Lifetime Free Oil Changes on ALL new vehicle purchases – in stock or factory ordered. Additionally, Fuller Ford offers the convenience of onsite Penske Truck Rental. Whether you are coming from Ohio, Kentucky, or Indiana, we are conveniently located right off of I-75, just west of downtown Cincinnati. We are Cincinnati’s ONLY downtown dealer! Check out our entire inventory at www.fullerisford.com.


New Ford Escape Offers More Space, Clever Cargo Solutions

May 22, 2012

Featuring a new look, the all-new Ford Escape is roomier and has more cargo capacity than the current model. And this stylish small utility vehicle provides clever spots to help drivers and passengers stay organized.

With second-row seats that fold flat with the touch of a button, stowing different types of cargo is made easier with the space and smart features available in the 2013 Ford Escape, including an umbrella holder, second-row floor bin and ticket holder in each sun visor.

“The new Escape has more cargo space than the previous model as well as a number of storage bins and other unique storage features,” said Eric Jackson, vehicle architecture supervisor. “Whether you have an umbrella, parking stub, cell phone, sunglasses or large water bottle, the new Escape has a specific place for it where it won’t get lost or roll under the seat. The hidden storage under the second-row floor is great for keeping items secure and out of view.”

In addition to handling small items, the new Escape handles large ones too. With a roomy second row and standard cargo tie-downs, this Escape is ready to handle loads large or small.

Hands-free loading

The available hands-free power liftgate brings new technology to the SUV market and makes it easier to stow gear. The Escape is the only SUV to have this convenient and unique feature.

A gentle kicking motion under the center of the rear bumper activates, unlocks and raises the liftgate when the driver has the Escape key fob in his or her possession. This allows quick and easy access to the cargo area without needing to set down packages or dig around for the keys. The same motion closes the hatch. The system safeguards against accidental opening by being programmed to open with leg motion – not when an animal runs underneath or when the vehicle hits a bump on the road.

The liftgate height can be programmed or adjusted manually to meet specific customer needs.

Clever spaces

The Escape features several places to store specific items in the interior including umbrellas, bottles and cell phones.

Unique storage spots include:

•Overhead visors with ticket holders for parking or toll tickets

•Hidden storage bin under the second-row floor

•Small umbrella holders on both the driver and passenger seat trim panels

•A card holder below and a stowage bin above the center of the instrument panel

•Center console space to hold a 1-liter bottle, MP3 player or CDs

•Eight cupholders – four in the front and rear doors, two in the front center console and two in the optional folding second-row armrest

•Rear cargo management system

•Convenient USB ports in the center console and 110-volt inverter located at the back of the floor console for easy plug-in of laptops, cell phone chargers or other electronics

Seats fold with ease

The new Escape’s rear seats have been designed to fold flat easily in just a few seconds. With the touch of a button, the head restraint folds down and with the lift of a handle on the seat, the seatback folds and dives as the seat folds flat and clicks into position.

Escape also features an available two-position load floor, which can be configured to allow the customer to choose either maximum luggage volume or flat load floor.

Organization means less stress

Organization expert Janet Kester says organization is all about “applying simple concepts each day on a regular basis.” And she should know. Kester is a licensed psychotherapist and professional organizer helping people who suffer from chronic disorganization.

The new Escape helps ease the stress created by clutter by offering spaces for specific items such as an umbrella and toll tickets or coloring books for the kids, she says.

“If it doesn’t have a home, it’s homeless,” Kester says.

“Each item in your car should have a permanent home, at least while you’re inside the car,” she adds. “This way, when you have to retrieve the item, you’ll know exactly where it is.

“You’ll also know exactly where to put the item when you’re done using it. Homeless items cause clutter. The fewer homeless things you have, the less clutter you will have, as well as less stress and frustration.”

The new Escape can’t reduce the clutter in a vehicle, but it can enable those who are willing to take steps toward being more organized.

Fuller Ford offers Lifetime Free Oil Changes on ALL new vehicle purchases – in stock or factory ordered. Additionally, Fuller Ford offers the convenience of onsite Penske Truck Rental. Whether you are coming from Ohio, Kentucky, or Indiana, we are conveniently located right off of I-75, just west of downtown Cincinnati. We are Cincinnati’s ONLY downtown dealer! Check out our entire inventory at www.fullerisford.com.


Ford Part of Team Working to Standardize and Speed up Electric Vehicle Charge Times

May 20, 2012

Global automakers from the United States and Germany will demonstrate fast-charging technology that will enable the recharging of most electrified vehicles with compatible systems in as little as 15-20 minutes.

Audi, BMW, Chrysler, Daimler, Ford, General Motors, Porsche and Volkswagen have agreed to support a harmonized single-port fast charging approach – called DC-fast charging with a Combined Charging System – for use on electric vehicles in Europe and the United States.

Live charging demonstrations were conducted during the Electric Vehicle Symposium 26 (EVS26) May 6-9.

The combined charging system integrates one-phase AC-charging, fast three-phase AC-charging, DC-charging at home and ultra-fast DC-charging at public stations into one vehicle inlet. This will allow customers to charge at most existing charging stations regardless of power source and may speed more affordable adoption of a standardized infrastructure.

The International Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) has chosen the Combined Charging System as the fast-charging methodology for a standard that incrementally extends the existing Type 1-based AC-charging. The standard is to be officially published this summer. ACEA, the European association of vehicle manufacturers has also selected the Combined Charging System as its AC/DC-charging interface for all new vehicle types in Europe beginning in 2017.

The charging system design was based on the collaborative review and analysis of existing charging strategies, the ergonomics of the connector and preferences of U.S. and European customers. The Combined Charging System was developed for all international vehicle markets and creates a uniform standard with identical electrical systems, charge controllers, package dimensions and safety mechanisms.

The system maximizes capability for integration with future smart grid developments through common broadband communication methods regardless of the global location of the charging system. The combined charging approach will reduce development and infrastructure complexity, improve charging reliability, reduce the total cost-of-ownership for end customers and provide low maintenance costs.

Commercially available combined charging stations are projected to be available later this year. All committed OEMs have vehicles in development which will use the Combined Charging System.

The friendly folks in Fuller Ford’s sales department will help you pick out right vehicle for your specific needs.  Fuller Ford offers Lifetime Free Oil Changes on ALL new vehicle purchases – in stock or factory ordered. Additionally, Fuller Ford offers the convenience of onsite Penske Truck Rental. Whether you are coming from Ohio, Kentucky, or Indiana, we are conveniently located right off of I-75, just west of downtown Cincinnati. We are Cincinnati’s ONLY downtown dealer! Check out our entire inventory at www.fullerisford.com.


All-New Ford Escape with EcoBoost Engine EPA-Certified at 33 MPG, the Most Fuel Efficient Small SUV on Market

May 10, 2012

 

The new Ford Escape is certified by the U.S. EPA as the most fuel efficient small SUV with an automatic. The Escape’s 1.6-liter EcoBoost® engine is certified at 33 mpg – 2 mpg better than the Honda CR-V and 5 mpg better than Toyota RAV4.

All three engines in the new Escape are EPA-certified at 30-plus mpg on the highway. The 2.0-liter EcoBoost, certified at 30 mpg on the highway, beats the Toyota RAV4 by 3 mpg and the Chevrolet Equinox by 6 mpg.

“The fuel economy of the all-new Escape showcases the continued success of Ford’s development of smaller, yet more powerful engines, “ said Raj Nair, group vice president, Ford Global Product Development. “Ford understands people want fuel-efficient vehicles without sacrificing power and space requirements.”

Escape’s 1.6-liter EcoBoost engine – offered for the first time in North America – delivers 33 mpg highway and 23 mpg city, produces 178 horsepower and 184 lb.-ft. of torque, topping the Mazda CX-5 by more than 20 horsepower and 30 lb.-ft. of torque.

Those looking for maximum power coupled with solid fuel efficiency can opt for the 2.0-liter EcoBoost with 30 mpg on the highway and 22 mpg in the city. The 2.0-liter EcoBoost delivers 240 horsepower and 270 lb.-ft. of torque. It is also rated at 3,500 pounds towing, which leads the pack for small, turbocharged SUVs.

The Escape’s 2.5-liter offers 31 mpg on the highway – a 3 mpg improvement over the outgoing standard engine – and 22 mpg in the city.

EcoBoost engines are standard in the SE, SEL and Titanium editions. The SE and SEL models come with the 1.6L standard and the Titanium comes with the 2.0-liter. The 2.5-liter is available in the S edition.

With the EPA certification, the Escape is the latest vehicle to join Ford’s fuel-efficient lineup. Ford now offers eight vehicles with 40 mpg or more and 11 vehicles with fuel-efficient EcoBoost engines.

Top fuel economy and performance

EcoBoost engines are at the core of Ford’s plan to offer outstanding fuel efficiency for millions of drivers. By 2013, more than 90 percent of Ford’s North American lineup will be available with EcoBoost technology. Ford also holds more than 125 patents on EcoBoost engine technology.

Both new Escape engines combine EcoBoost’s core technologies of direct fuel injection and turbocharging and add twin independent variable camshaft timing (Ti-VCT) to deliver even better miles per gallon and save customers money on fuel.

In Escape, EcoBoost engines are mated to specially calibrated, six-speed SelectShift Automatic® transmissions, which are standard. Drivers who want more hands-on experiences can manually control gear selection from a switch on the left-hand side of the shifter.

Improved aerodynamics

Fuel efficiency in the new Escape is helped by a new Active Grille Shutter System. Positioned between the grille opening and the radiator, the shutter is monitored by the engine control module. The grille automatically opens and closes to maintain the ideal operating temperature and optimize aerodynamics.

The new Escape should arrive at Fuller Ford later this month. In addition to class-leading fuel efficiency, Escape features a liftgate with motion-sensing technology similar to video games’ and an upgraded MyFord Touch® system that makes connecting with digital devices even easier.

The Escape is built at Ford’s Louisville Assembly Plant in Kentucky.

Fuller Ford offers Lifetime Free Oil Changes on ALL new vehicle purchases – in stock or factory ordered. Additionally, Fuller Ford offers the convenience of onsite Penske Truck Rental. Whether you are coming from Ohio, Kentucky, or Indiana, we are conveniently located right off of I-75, just west of downtown Cincinnati. We are Cincinnati’s ONLY downtown dealer! Check out our entire inventory at www.fullerisford.com.


EcoBoost Gives Ford the Industry Lead in Reducing Engine Size Without Giving Up Performance

May 7, 2012

 

For decades, size meant everything when it came to engines – bigger was better and there was no replacement for displacement. But volatile gasoline prices and growing consumer interest in clean technologies are turning that notion on its head.

Today, buyers are snapping up cars and trucks powered by smaller engines that offer better fuel efficiency without sacrificing performance.

When the EcoBoost®-equipped 2013 Fusion, Escape and 2.0-liter Taurus arrive on dealer lots this spring and summer, Ford will offer an industry-leading seven vehicles with the smallest engines in their segments – more than any competitor.

Ford’s new global family of EcoBoost engines offer customers more affordable, high-efficiency powertrain choices, along with Ford’s growing lineup of hybrid and electric models. On average, an EcoBoost engine can improve fuel economy by as much as 20 percent, yet it costs around $1,000 on most vehicles.

Available now in displacements of 1.6, 2.0 and 3.5 liters, Ford’s EcoBoost engines are designed to offer drivers outstanding performance in everything from economy cars to trucks.

Most of the Ford vehicles with the smallest engines in their segments – 2013 Escape and 2013 Fusion (1.6 liters); Explorer, Edge and Taurus (2.0 liters); and Interceptor and F-150 (3.5 liters) – deliver the same or greater power than the larger, heavier engines in competitive vehicles, along with higher fuel economy.

Replacing large engines with smaller-displacement EcoBoost engines is one way Ford is delivering on its promise to lead or be among the leaders in fuel economy in every segment in which it competes.

As with cell phones, laptops and other consumer electronics, Ford’s engines will continue to shrink – yet become more powerful – in the coming years.

The next new EcoBoost engine scheduled for launch in North America, a 1.0-liter three-cylinder coming in 2013, will be Ford’s smallest yet. This compact, innovative engine – which is the same length as the average laptop computer – is rated at 125 horsepower, making it one of the highest output-per-liter regular production engines Ford has ever made.

This year, Ford Motor Company will offer EcoBoost engines in 12 Ford and Lincoln nameplates – Focus ST, 2013 Fusion and Escape, Taurus, Interceptor, Flex, Edge,  Explorer and F-150, as well as the latest Lincoln MKT and MKS models and the all-new Lincoln MKZ.. By 2015, the company plans to offer an EcoBoost engine on 90 percent of its North American nameplates.

Light + small + power = better

In addition to developing more horsepower per liter than the larger engines they are replacing, EcoBoost motors are helping Ford reduce vehicle weight, which improves handling and braking and helps increase fuel economy.

The 2013 Escape and Fusion models provide a graphic example of why Ford’s new generation of smaller, lighter and more powerful engines are better. In the 2012 Escape and Fusion, the 3.0-liter V6 engine is rated at 240 horsepower and 223 lb.-ft. of torque. That engine weighs 340 pounds.

The new 2.0-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder engine that is optional in the 2013 Escape and Fusion is rated at 240 horsepower and 270 lb.-ft. of torque and it weighs 295 pounds, 45 pounds less than the old 3.0-liter. The 1.6-liter EcoBoost engine available in both vehicles delivers 178 horsepower and 184 lb.-ft of torque and weighs just 223 pounds.

Since launching EcoBoost in summer 2009, Ford has sold more than 180,000 EcoBoost-equipped vehicles in North America, making it the most rapidly adopted fuel-saving technology in recent automotive history.

According to Ward’s sales data, it took Toyota 50 months, for example, to sell 100,000 gasoline-electric hybrids in North America. And Ford’s EcoBoost lineup outsells all competitors’ diesel, compressed natural gas and battery-electric cars combined.

EcoBoost is a suite of technologies that combines turbocharging with direct injection, variable valve timing and precise engine controls to increase the power output and efficiency of the gasoline internal combustion engine. The increased power output enables Ford to replace a V8 engine with a V6, a V6 with a four-cylinder and a four-cylinder with a three-cylinder – with no loss of performance.

“The F-150 is a great example of how EcoBoost is changing the way customers think of our engines,” said Joe Bakaj, Ford vice president of Powertrain Engineering. “Before we launched the 3.5-liter EcoBoost, few people would have believed a V6 was tough enough to get the job done in a full-size truck. The last time a six-cylinder engine outsold a V8 in the F-150 was in the late 1980s.

“But with 365 horsepower and 420 lb.-ft. of torque, towing capacity as much as 11,300 pounds and EPA highway fuel economy of 22 mpg, the EcoBoost V6 has quickly become the top-selling engine in the F-150,” said Bakaj. Just over 40 percent of F-150s are sold with an EcoBoost engine, he added.

EcoBoost Edge is another small-engine success story. With a nearly 20 percent take rate, the 2.0-liter EcoBoost-powered Edge is exceeding sales projections.

Ford EcoBoost engines are also proving popular in Europe, where the 1.6-liter and 2.0-liter four-cylinder units are offered across several nameplates, and the all-new 1.0-liter three-cylinder EcoBoost has met with unanimous acclaim.

Fuller Ford offers Lifetime Free Oil Changes on ALL new vehicle purchases – in stock or factory ordered. Additionally, Fuller Ford offers the convenience of onsite Penske Truck Rental. Whether you are coming from Ohio, Kentucky, or Indiana, we are conveniently located right off of I-75, just west of downtown Cincinnati. We are Cincinnati’s ONLY downtown dealer! Check out our entire inventory at www.fullerisford.com.


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