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Auto blogMon, 30 Dec 2013 15:45:00 EST
Ford is ready to call the ball on its 2013 sales totals, predicting a first-place finish for units sold in the US for a single brand. The company anticipates selling more than 2.4 million vehicles when all vehicle sales over the last 12 months have been tallied, repeating the victory it trumpeted over Toyota last year.
According to Ford's accounting, it sold 329,677 more vehicles than did Toyota in 2012. This year, the Blue Oval expects that margin to grow; through the end of November, Ford says it has outsold Toyota by 396,041 units.
Retail sales of Ford products are projected to exceed 1.7 million units for 2013 (the best retail result in 6 years for the company), with passenger cars accounting for 600k of that total. The redesigned Fusion is expected to crest the 290k mark, and the Fiesta is said to be ready to hit a model-record of 70k-plus. Meanwhile, utility vehicles and trucks are still paying a lot of bills in Dearborn, with the new Escape racking up an expected 300k sales and F-Series trucks chugging along at 688,810 units sold thru November.
Time for everyone to feign surprise - Ford has just announced that it has the increased horsepower and torque levels of its 6.7-liter Power Stroke turbodiesel V8 engine for 2015. As you'd expect, the Blue Oval is claiming class-leading figures of 440 hp (up from 400) and 860 pound-feet (up from 800), and that's enough to enable Ford's F-450 Super Duty model to tow as much as 31,200 pounds, which, again, the automaker claims is class leading.
Now, it should be noted that the max rating quoted above is achieved with the Ford F-450. The 2015 F-350, which is perhaps a better comparison to the Ram 3500 HD pickup that claimed the towing crown in 2013 at an even 30,000 pounds, is capped at 26,500 pounds, either with a gooseneck or when towing a fifth-wheel trailer. In any case, it's going to take a load the size of Godzilla to make any of the current crop of fullsize heavy-duty pickup trucks break into a sweat. For those keeping track, Chevy rates its 2015 Silverado HD at a maximum of 23,200 pounds.
Ford's newfound pulling power comes courtesy of a larger turbocharger for its in-house Power Stroke engine, new fuel injector tips and, we'd assume, retuned computer controls. Besides the engine enhancements, the F-350 gets a wider front track for 2015 and new front springs, while the F-450 gains commercial-grade 19.5-inch wheels and tires, new rear U-joints, leaf springs, stabilizer bars and shocks. The steering and brake systems have also been upgraded.
Want to be the very first person to own a 2015 Ford Mustang GT? Here's what you'll need to do: be in Scottsdale, AZ on January 18 for the Barrett-Jackson auction and bring a very big checkbook. Having a passion for charity isn't a bad idea either.
Yes, the first 2015 Mustang to be sold to the public will be crossing the block at Barrett-Jackson in Scottsdale, with proceeds from the auction going to JDRF, the charity formerly known as the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.
"Ford Mustangs have always been among the most popular collector cars at Barrett-Jackson Collector Car events," said the president of Barrett-Jackson, Steve Davis. "While every collector wishes they had snapped up the first Mustang sold in 1964, this is an opportunity to realize that dream in a different way."