Options: Cassette Player
Exterior Color: Forest Green
Drive Type: Not Sure
Interior Color: Goldish
Chandler, Arizona, United States
The Ford F-150 is one of the best selling vehicles on the planet. Considering that, one can imagine that when it comes time for a redesign, there are hardly any half measures. For its lucky thirteenth generation, Ford has gone all-in on the single most important vehicle in its portfolio, redesigning it from the ground up.
The big news is the F-150's new, lightweight, Atlas-inspired body. Ninety-three percent of that new body is made from a sort of aluminum alloy not unlike what the US military uses in its M2 Bradley fighting vehicles and Humvees, and it accounts for up to 70 percent of the F-150's 700-pound weight reduction. As a side benefit, the aluminum body should prove more resistant to dents and dings. Built Ford tough, indeed.
If you're wondering where the other 30 percent of that 700-pound weight loss went, 8.5 percent (60 pounds) came from the increased use of high-strength steel (up from 23 percent to 77 percent) in its ladder-box frame. Ford claims this steel is comparable to some of the heavy duty pickups used by its competitors, with a PSI rating of 70,000.
Those of you that caught yesterday's op-ed about Lincoln will have heard already, but Mark LaNeve has taken the helm at Team Detroit. Once the North American vice president of sales, service and marketing for General Motors, LaNeve will now head up the agency that handles all of Ford advertising. LaNeve will also run the account for Lincoln. While at GM from 2001 to 2009, the exec oversaw ad campaigns like Cadillac's Breakthrough and sales initiatives like "Employee Pricing for Everyone."
He left in 2009 to join Allstate as chief marketing officer, oversaw the creation of the Mayhem ad spots and was moved into the role of VP of agency operations overseeing Allstate's 10,000 agents. He resigned from the insurer in February 2012 for personal reasons and joined Team Detroit in August 2012 as chief operating officer, in charge of satellite offices in New York and internationally. He replaces ex-CEO Cameron McNaughton, and will continue to hold the title of COO.
Lincoln is trying to get its 2013 back to rights after putting big dollar commercials for the 2013 MKZ on television then having production glitches preventing cars from getting to dealerships. With rumors of a relaunch in the works, it's no surprise LaNeve has been given the reins - and from here it looks like the brand is desperate for the kind of magic he's proved he can marshal. Perhaps he can start by calling a mulligan on the renaming exercise that gave us the hoary "Lincoln Motor Company" and go back to oh, say, "Lincoln." Then he can ask the product folks to get to work on the MKC concept...
The Ford Focus ST and Fiesta ST have created plenty of excitement in the sport compact segment, and Ford is looking to make sure that owners are driving and enjoying their cars to the best of their abilities. As an added bonus for buying one of these sporty hatchbacks, Ford will provide a complimentary ST Octane Academy session to be held at the Miller Motorsports Park in Utah.
Attendees will be responsible for travel and lodging, but Ford will provide the driving school free of charge. Included in this two-day trip, ST owners will get class instruction and driving instruction in prepped Focus ST and Fiesta ST models on the track and autocross course. Some karting action will also be involved as will a tour of Ken Block's Hoonigan Racing headquarters located nearby. If this doesn't sound like enough fun, there is also an optional day of activities that includes some more track time in a Mustang GT and off-road instruction in an F-150 SVT Raptor.
Ford told us that those who have already purchased a Focus ST or Fiesta ST will still be able to attend the performance driving school, but the press release, which is posted below, makes it sound like it applies to original owners only. Ford has yet to announce its schedule for the ST Octane Academy or prices for additional activities or guests.