A 4-year Professional, Frame-off Restoration And High-performance Build Completed During Early 2013, This Outstanding 1967 Ford Galaxie 500 Convertible Features Mechanicals By Brauns Automotive And Power By A Wicked Ford 347 Stroker Taken To The Next Level By Pro-formance Unlimited. Power Is Delivered To The Pavement By A 4l60e Automatic With A 2,300-rpm Stall Torque Converter And Compushift E-controller.
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Auto blogWed, 24 Jul 2013 10:59:00 EST
Ford is rolling along nicely, with a positive second-quarter sales report and a $2.3 billion profit in North America. The Dearborn, Michigan-based manufacturer captured $1.2 billion globally from April to June, with a $177 million profit in Asia. Even in Europe, the land of doom and gloom for automakers not named Mazda, Ford saw some success as it lowered its expected full-year loss from $2 billion to $1.8 billion. The company lost $348 million in Europe during the second quarter, which, believe it or not, represents a $56-million improvement over 2012.
According to the report on CNBC, Ford enjoyed a three-percent increase in pre-market trading thanks to the news. The strong demand for the F-150 propelled growth in the US market, while Ford's 47-percent increase in Asian sales can be attributed to the new EcoSport crossover and Kuga (Ford Escape in the US) arriving in the somewhat fragile Chinese market.
Pre-tax profits for Ford are expected to be in the neighborhood of $8 billion by the end of the year, with sales the US, Europe, and China all looking up. The company also shifted $4.78 billion of asset-backed debt in the form of bonds, according to a report by Bloomberg. This move came amidst rumors of the Federal Reserve cutting back on its $85-billion-per-month bond purchases. Ford wasn't alone among automakers looking to sell off debt, though, as Mercedes-Benz and Nissan shifted around $1 billion each in bonds relating to auto loans.
Hybrids are known for their great fuel economy and low emissions, but it looks like given current market conditions, only about three percent of new car consumers are willing to pay the premium for them. A new study from IHS/Polk finds that the hybrid market share among overall US auto sales are falling, despite more models with the technology on sale than ever before.
The study examined new car registrations in March from 2009 through 2014. In that time, the auto industry grew from 24 to 47 hybrid models available to consumers, but market share for the powertrain remained almost stagnant in that time. As of 2009, hybrids held 2.4 percent of the market; it fell slightly to 2.3 percent in 2010 and grew to 3.3 percent in 2013. However, 2014 showed a drop back to 3 percent. Overall hybrid sales have been growing since 2010, but they just aren't keeping up with the total auto market.
According to IHS/Polk, this isn't what you would expect to see. Usually, each new model in the market brings along with it a boost in sales. The growth in hybrid models 2009 to 2014 should have shown a larger increase in share for the segment.
A national law firm, Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP, has filed a proposed class action lawsuit whose presupposition is that MyFord Touch is defective. Specifically, the complaint states that the system - as well as the MyLincoln Touch and MyMercury Touch clones - often freeze, fail to respond to voice or touch commands and have issues connecting to mobile phones.
According to Hagens Berman managing partner Steve Berman, MyFord Touch is a theoretically "brilliant idea" that falls short in actual execution. Said Berman in a press release, "In reality, the system is fundamentally flawed, failing to reliably provide functionality, amounting to an inconvenience at best, and a serious safety issue at worst."
Other MFT issues enumerated within the 41-page filing include problems controlling the window defroster, rear-view camera and navigation system. The suit maintains that Ford is aware of the problem but has yet to submit a workable and acceptable solution to MFT customers. Scroll down if you'd like to read the full press release.