Interior Color: Black
Number of Cylinders: 8
Drive Type: Rear Wheel
Number of Doors: 2
Exterior Color: Yellow
Apopka, Florida, United States
The poor first quarter earnings of Ford and General Motors are having an effect all the way up the food chain. Both automakers struggled with recalls in the first three months of the year, and, according to The Detroit News, they have responded by increasing the percentage of bonuses tied to vehicle quality for salaried workers, including top executives.
GM announced that 25 percent of bonuses (up from 10 percent) for all salaried workers would be tied to its vehicle quality standards. The automaker revealed in its financial report that it spent $1.3 billion on recall-related repairs in the first quarter, and net income was down 86 percent.
Ford also increased the quality proportion of bonuses for about 26,000 salaried workers all the way up to CEO Alan Mulally from 10 percent to 20 percent. The company announced in its report that the amount paid out in warranty and recall claims was about $400 million higher than expected in the first quarter. Its net income fell 39 percent from the previous year. "The change reflects how critical quality is to our overall business," said spokesperson Todd Nissen speaking to Autoblog.
Well at least we now know why Ken Block "just ain't care" about smashing up his Ford Fiesta rally car recently. It's because he's getting a full brand makeover including a new team name, new paint scheme and even a new headquarters. Formerly known as Monster World Rally Team, Block and his Fiesta will now be competing under the Hoonigan Racing Division name, which is based out of a new 12,000 square foot facility located in Park City, UT.
As you can tell in the image above, Hoonigan Racing will replace the familiar black, white and green paint scheme with a more colorful design featuring plenty of blue, purple and red; the Monster Energy logo retains some of the car's green. The new paint scheme was inspired by Block's love of skateboard graphics from the '80s and early '90s as well as "Miami Vice-era" speedboats.
Block will continue to compete in multiple rally racing series such as Global RallyCross, World Rally Championship and X Games. The new headquarters features office space on one side and a shop for the cars on the other side. The building features plenty of stuff you'd expect from a company designed around Ken Block, including a massive gaming station for racing video games, recycled shipping containers used throughout the facility and a black bear.
While its days may be numbered, Ford isn't just going to let its Falcon sedan limp out for the Australian market. No, the Blue Oval is releasing a refreshed Falcon for its final years, and it's lead by this, the new XR8. That's right, this dead-car-driving is going to go out on a high note.
Ford's global design DNA dominates the looks of the new Falcon, with a grille reminiscent of the US market Fusion and the European-market Mondeo. The headlights aren't a straight port, and boast their own unique LED running light pattern (at least on the XR8), but the overall look is strikingly similar. Out back, LED taillights highlight the rear of the Faclon. Despite the substantial new fascia, this is still a mid-cycle refresh. That means most of the rest of the Falcon's body panels are carryovers from the current model.
The XR8 model, shown above, arrives with a supercharged V8, allegedly displacing 5.0 liters. Unfortunately, details on the Falcon's mechanicals are in remarkably short supply. Ford has committed to a range of turbocharged four, as well as turbocharged and naturally aspirated six-cylinders, in addition to the V8, although specifics on those mills aren't available.