Interior Color: Gray
Model: E-Series Van
Warranty: Vehicle does NOT have an existing warranty
Number of doors: 3
Exterior Color: White
Cincinnati, OH, United States
Consumer Reports has released its Annual Auto Reliability Survey and the results are, in a word, interesting. While we already covered the score-damaging effects of infotainment systems, there's another big angle to the data that's getting some attention - the utterly dismal scores of the Detroit Three's small car offerings.
The turbocharged Dodge Dart and Chevrolet Cruze, as well as the Ford Fiesta were their respective brands' lowest-scoring models, a stat that's made worse by the fact that the American automakers finished 25th, 21st and 23rd, respectively.
That's not acceptable for The Detroit Free Press' auto critic, Mark Phelan, who has penned a scathing critique of the D3's small car reliability scores, arguing that GM, Ford and Chrysler are "out of excuses."
Trucks have towing capacity, EVs have driving range and performance cars have Nürburgring lap times. What do all three have in common? They should all be taken with a grain of salt. Currently, there is no sanctioned way to record lap times or verify production-spec cars - a lesson we recently learned with the 2015 Nissan GT-R Nismo - and until there is a way to do so (and there probably never will be), we'll never officially know the actual time it took for Ford to lap the 'Ring with its ultra-powerful Shelby GT500.
After posting a Ford-made video of a 2013 GT500 running around the 'Ring, the guys over at SVTPerformance.com (an enthusiasts forum not affiliated with Ford or SVT) wanted more answers. They got in touch with Ford's Global Performance Vehicle Chief Engineer Jamal Hameedi, who said until there is a way to verify the times and inspect the cars, Ford will not get involved with lap-time wars. In the email, Hameedi pointed out that the 'Ring is a useful tool in that it allows a wide spectrum of track conditions, but until there is a governed way to record times, there is no way to accurately compare cars head-to-head.
And as much as some may not like it, Hameedi speaks the truth. It really isn't possible to compare times from one car to another, unless those cars were lapping the same track at the same time with the same driver. Not that any of this means there won't be continuous wars by fans and manufacturers alike... in other words, feel free to voice your opinions in the Comments below.
With July 4th just around the corner, what better time could there be for Cars.com to announce that the Ford F-150 is the Most American car of 2013? This may be especially true since it was the Toyota Camry, a car produced by a company based in Japan, that had held the top spot from 2009 to 2012.
Cars.com compiles its Most American list by considering the amount of parts each vehicle uses that come from America, where it's final assembly takes place and how many units per year are sold. "While the assembly point and domestic parts content of the F-150 didn't change from 2012-2013, vehicle sales are responsible for bumping the F-150 to the top spot," according to Patrick Olsen, Editor-in-Chief of Cars.com.
As far as automakers go (as opposed to individual models), Toyota retains the top spot it held in 2012, with General Motors, Chrysler, Ford and Honda (in that order) rounding out the list. The motivation behind this list each year, according to Olsen, is "to help car shoppers understand that 'American-Made' extends beyond just the Detroit three" and because "a study we conducted in 2012 indicated that 25 percent of shoppers surveyed preferred to buy American."