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Auto blogTue, 14 Oct 2014 11:01:00 EST
Pickup trucks tend not to advance at quite the same pace as the rest of the industry. That's what makes the new Ford F-150 so remarkable, jettisoning its old steel construction in favor of aluminum. It's a game changer that Ford is betting big on, and in anticipation of surging demand, the Blue Oval automaker is adding 850 new jobs to put the thing together.
Those 850 new employees will be centered at Ford's Rouge complex in Michigan - with 300 at Dearborn Stamping, 50 more at Dearborn Diversified and 500 at the Dearborn Truck facility, the latter of which has already kicked off what Ford describes as "the largest manufacturing transformation in decades." Old manufacturing equipment is being replaced with the latest technologies, and even the Ford Rouge Factory Tour is undergoing a complete overhaul.
The new jobs come as part of the commitments Ford made to the UAW in 2011 to create 12,000 hourly jobs in the United States by 2015 - a number which Ford has already exceeded at 14,000. Over 4,000 of those are centered in southeastern Michigan.
Ford's bro-tastic F-150 Tremor will be pacing this weekend's NASCAR Camping World Truck Series at Michigan International Speedway. The Tremor fills a gap in the Ford F-Series lineup that we imagine the NASCAR set have clamored for - a hot-rod pickup truck.
Where the F-150 Raptor is designed to go quick on anything, the Tremor and its 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 are designed to tackle the road. The 365-horsepower and 420-pound-foot EcoBoost is unchanged from the rest of the F-150 line, but it combines the shortest drive ratio with the lightest two-door body, making it a bit of hot rod.
Ford will be offering hot laps with Michigan native Brad Keselowski behind the wheel of the Tremor for fans that arrive in the Irish Hills on August 14. The main showing for the new pickup will be the August 17 race, though, when it'll lead the field at the start of the race and through cautions.
Ken Block drives Fords. Hoons the heck out of 'em, actually. Mostly Fiestas, but also the occasional Focus or Mustang. But earlier this year, the Gymkhana guru revealed his baddest Ford yet: an F-150 SVT Raptor on tracks. And true to form, here he is putting it to the test in the latest video from Monster Energy and Hoonigan Racing.
Filmed at Baldface Lodge in Nelson, BC, the video pairs Block up with snowboarders Zak Hale and Ethan Deiss for some deep-powder action. You'll want to watch the video for yourself, but the bottom line is that the RaptorTrax beats the heck out of waiting on line for the ski lift. It's enough to make us start to look forward to winter... almost.