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Auto blogMon, 13 Jan 2014 09:05:00 EST
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.
A couple of weeks ago we brought you footage and official times of the new Chevy Camaro Z/28 lapping the Nürburgring. With a 7:37.47 lap time, the Z/28 emerged as the fastest muscle car ever to lap the circuit. But what was missing from that picture was how fast the king of all Mustangs, the Shelby GT500, could manage to lap the Nordschleife.
Ford never released any information or footage of the GT500 on the Nürburgring that we were aware of - that is, until the guys at SVTPerformance.com put in a request for Mustang videos. Among the clips they received was never-seen, in-car footage of the Shelby GT500 lapping the circuit. And boy did it hustle.
Although not quite official, the video seems to show the GT500 lapped the venerated German track in a touch under 7:40. That would make it a tick or two faster than the Camaro ZL1 - but what of the Z/28? By Chevy's quoted time, the Z/28 is still faster than the GT500, but SVTPerformance suggests GM may have fudged the numbers a bit and scrubbed half a second or so off their lap time.
There have been many great car commercials over the years, but is it possible to define the best? Well, Ad Week recently took a crack at it by rating the top commercials of the year by looking at their view counts on YouTube, but Auto Express took a more democratic approach by putting the decision to a vote. Just after Thanksgiving, Auto Express came up with a list of the 20 popular commercials, and it tasked its readers with choosing the winner for the best car ad of all time. The winner? Honda's 2003 commercial for its then-new European Accord titled "The Cog."
While the ad never aired in the US, most car people have surely seen the impressive Rube Goldberg-style spot. In fact, the only commercial on this list that we saw on US television was the Volkswagen ad "The Force," but many of the others have become viral videos, including transforming and dancing Citroën C4. Of the 19 other commercials that vied for the title of best ad of all time, only the Ford Puma "Steve McQueen" commercial gave Honda a run for its advertising money.
Scroll down to watch Auto Express' top five commercial in order and to check out a press release, then let us know some of your favorite car commercials in Comments.