Drive Type: C4 automatic
Model: Model A
Trim: 1931 Slant Windshield Model A Ford
Hawkins, Texas, United States
Car buyers have a responsibility to be well-informed consumers. That's not always a very simple task, but some guidelines are self-evident. If you live in a very snowy climate, you generally know a Ford Mustang or Chevrolet Camaro might not be as viable a vehicle choice as an all-wheel drive Explorer or Traverse, for example. If you want a fuel-efficient car, it's generally a good idea to know the difference between a diesel and a hybrid. But what if it's kind of tough to be an informed consumer? What if the information you need is more difficult to come by, or worse, based on different standards for each vehicle? Well, in that case, you might be a truck shopper.
For years, customers of light-duty pickups have had to suffer through different ratings of towing capacities for each brand. For 2015 model year trucks, though, that will no longer be a problem. According to Automotive News, General Motors, Ford and Chrysler Group have announced that starting with next year's models, a common standard will be used to measure towing capacity. The Detroit Three will join Toyota, which adopted the Society of Automotive Engineers' so-called SAE J2807 standards way back in 2011.
The standard was originally supposed to be in place for MY2013, but concerns that it would lower the overall stated capacity for trucks led Detroit automakers to pass. Ford originally passed, claiming it'd wait until its new F-150 was launched to adopt the new standards, leading GM and Ram to follow suit. Nissan, meanwhile, has said it will adopt the new standards as its vehicles are updated, meaning the company's next-generation Titan should adhere to the same tow ratings as its competitors.
Ford is recalling certain 2012 Taurus, 2013 Explorer and 2012 Lincoln MKS models over fuel tank concerns. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, vehicles built between July 19, 2011 and March 15, 2012 may have been built with fuel tanks that have a "marginally sealed seam" on the side. Those seams may not provide the strength necessary to protect the tank from rupture during a collision. They may also leak. The recall covers a total of 3,037 vehicles. NHTSA says that leaked fuel, in the presence of an ignition source, could easily cause a fire.
Dealers will inspect the tanks and replace them as need be free of charge. Owners can expect to be notified once the campaign begins on or around April 22, 2013. You can read the full NHTSA recall notice below for more information.
A California lawsuit over the fuel economy claims for the 2013 Ford C-Max was first reported back in December. Based on the numerous reports we've heard of disgruntled owners failing to get their car's EPA fuel economy ratings on the C-Max and 2013 Fusion Hybrid, we suspected there would be more to this story. The Detroit News is reporting that two California law firms are combining their lawsuits against Ford on this matter for "false and misleading" claims.
The article states that there are hundreds of C-Max and Fusion Hybrid owners who have joined the lawsuit, but the issue isn't limited to customers. In December, Consumer Reports extensively tested both the Fusion Hybrid and C-Max and found that both hybrids performed significantly worse than their EPA claims. This all comes just a few months after Hyundai and Kia took the unprecedented step of lowering the fuel economy ratings for all of their 2012 and 2013 model-year vehicles.