Drive Type: Automatic
Model: Model A
Southwest Iowa, United States
Mike Kluzner is a man of many talents. Not only is he the software engineer responsible for fuel system diagnostics for Ford globally, he "got his start designing laser weapon systems capable of disabling the navigation systems of enemy satellites" for the former Soviet Union. Quite a résumé, wouldn't you say?
You may be asking yourself the same question that popped into our minds upon reading about Mr. Kluzner: What do laser weapon systems have to do with Ford and its EcoBoost engines? We'll let the man answer himself. "The same process for analyzing key physical relationships works for what we do today in engine combustion, catalyst chemistry and mechanics," says Kluzner. "These are all part of Ford's software engineering expertise." Who are we to argue?
Ford also employs an engineer who previously designed software to detect damage to the heat tiles on the International Space Station, as well as one who's past work involved particle physics, says the automaker in the press release below. David Bell (pictured above right), global boost system controls engineer for Ford, describes the software running EcoBoost as "the secret sauce" that makes the technology work as the driver intends and demands.
Poor Escape. Ever since its launch in 2012, Ford's small CUV has been the subject of many, many, many recalls. And today, The Detroit News is reporting that Ford is adding two more recalls to the 2013-14 model year Escape's permanent record, one of them also involves the C-Max hybrid hatchback.
The first recall, covering 692,500 Escape and C-Max vehicles, is due to a software glitch that could cause the airbags - specifically, the safety canopy - to not deploy in a timely fashion during rollover crashes. According to the News, Ford says no crashes or injuries have been reported in relation to this problem.
The second recall, covering 692,700 Escapes, is related to the door handles. The News reports that the exterior door handles could open while the vehicle is in motion, and could also fail to latch properly. Once again, no crashes or injuries have occurred because of this. The National Highway Safety Traffic Administration has not issued an official notice on either recall as of this writing.
Just when you thought you'd figured the fullsize truck market out, Ford goes and throws us a massive curve ball with the 2015 F-150. The big headline news aren't tow or payload ratings, though we're sure those figures will be fully competitive if not class leading, they haven't yet been announced. Instead, the big headline news Ford is highlighting are the truck's new aluminum-intensive structure and 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6 engine.
And with good reason - all that aluminum means that Ford was able to cut a massive 700 pounds from the truck's curb weight. That is going to cause all sorts of great things to happen to the 2015 F-150's driving dynamics, performance and fuel efficiency, not to mention its ability to haul heavy loads. For those customers worried about the strength of aluminum versus the more conventional steel, Ford is quick to point out that many military vehicles, such as the HMMWV and Bradley Fighting Vehicle, use a very similar sort of aluminum alloy in their construction.
It's also worth mentioning that the backbone, a fully boxed ladder frame, is hewn from high-strength steel. Ford says "2015 Ford F-150 is the strongest and most durable F-150 ever," for what it's worth, claiming that "torture tested" in labs and in the real world for more than 10 million miles. What's more, the truck, in disguised form, completed all 883 miles of the Baja 1000.