For Sale By:Private Seller
Exterior Color: Red
Model: Model A
Trim: two Door Sedan
Drive Type: None
Ruskin, Florida, United States
According to a Bloomberg report, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has upgraded an investigation into complaints of unintended acceleration lodged against Ford vehicles. The investigation began in June of 2010 when just three complaints had been received and it only concerned the Ford Fusion and Mercury Milan, but this was at a time when the phrase "unintended acceleration" made grown men go pale. With 49 additional complaints received since then, the investigation has been reclassified as an engineering analysis - the last phase before a recall - and it has been expanded to include the Lincoln MKZ, making for a total of "around 480,000" units affected between the three sedans from the 2008 to 2010 model years.
The ostensible cause is that floor mats are trapping the accelerator pedal, but according to a Ford statement at the time, the entrapment is due to owners placing the optional all-weather floor mats, or aftermarket floor mats, on top of the car's standard floor mats. NHTSA has backed up that assessment, pinning the blame on "unsecured or double stacked floor mats."
On the face of it, it would appear that NHTSA has upgraded the status not because of Ford's error, but owner error, and Ford has stated publicly that it is "disappointed" in NHTSA's move. On top of NHTSA still being skittish after that other unintended acceleration debacle, it could be seen to be taking its time investigating all of the variables: it's reported that Ford changed its accelerator pedal design in 2010, a "heel blocker" in the floorpan has been considered a potential culprit in how the floor mats could be trapping the pedal, some drivers have said the floor mats weren't anywhere near the pedal, and according to a report in the LA Times, in "a letter sent by Ford to NHTSA in August 2010, the automaker said it found three injuries and one fatality that 'may have resulted from the alleged defect.'"
Ford always shows up in force at the SEMA Show, but this year's tally of 57 custom-tuned cars, trucks and vans is more than we can ever recall the Blue Oval bringing. Ford will introduce 28 of its project vehicles in its "Dreamcase" ahead of next month's show. The first batch of eight you'll find here with the remaining vehicles trickling into public view over the next couple of weeks.
This first group of cars includes a Fiesta, four Fiesta ST hatchbacks and a trio of Mustang show cars styled and tuned to varying degrees all by different aftermarket companies. Tanner Foust, Nitto Tire, 3dCarbon and Ice Nine Group are some of the more familiar names affixed to these cars. Our favorite so far is the Hollywood Hot Rods Mustang convertible (shown above) with its removable aluminum top and methanol-injected, 750-horsepower 5.0-liter V8.
Scroll down for all the details on these Fiestas and Mustangs, and stay tuned for more info on Ford's SEMA line, which will include custom versions of the Focus ST, Fusion, Transit Connect, F-150 and Super Duty.
Last August, Ford made a few waves by claiming that the Ford Focus was, at that point, the top-selling car in the world. The automaker failed to account for variations of the Toyota Corolla wearing a different name (such as the Auris and Matrix), however. With official data from Polk coming in now, Ford is able to say that the Focus was, in fact, the best-selling nameplate in the world last year.
Using new-car registrations (which doesn't factor in fleet sales), the Polk data shows that a total of more than one million Focus models around the world. Strong sales in the US and China have led to a 16 percent increase in year-over-year Focus sales from 2011 that helped to create even more of a gap between it and the second-best global seller, the Corolla.
Ford also had the Fiesta and F-Series listed in the top 10 for worldwide nameplates, but what's even more impressive is the fact that the F-Series is only sold in North America. Scroll down to see the list (compiled by Ford using Polk data) of the top global sellers last year and a press release from Ford.