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New York Auto Show, Jim Farley interview, 2014 Chevrolet Silverado fuel economy, Ford fuel economy app challenge
Episode #327 of the Autoblog Podcast is here, and this week, Dan Roth, Zach Bowman and Jeff Ross talk about this year's New York Auto Show, Chevrolet's latest assault in the pickup truck fuel economy battle, and Ford's reward for developing a better fuel economy app. Dan also has an interview with Ford's Jim Farley about the future of Lincoln. We wrap with your questions and emails, and for those of you who hung with us live on our UStream channel, thanks for taking the time. Keep reading for our Q&A module for you to scroll through and follow along, too. Thanks for listening!
Autoblog Podcast #327:
In an attempt to help push vehicle safety to a higher level, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety created a stricter Top Safety Pick+ rating last year, which incorporates a brutal small overlap test and requires cars to get Good ratings in four out of the five categories (and no less than Acceptable in the fifth). Joining the list of the safest cars of 2013, the 2013 Volvo XC60, Lincoln MKZ, Honda Civic (sedan and coupe) and the 2014 Mazda6 have all received the coveted TSP+ rating.
The Mazda6 and Lincoln MKZ have both been completely redesigned, and both received Acceptable ratings in the small overlap test. The Honda Civic, coming off its emergency refresh for 2013, is the first small car to be subjected to the small overlap test, and IIHS says that one of the car's many upgrades includes a stiffer front structure allowing it to receive Good ratings in all categories. Similarly, the XC60 gets all Good ratings thanks to, according to IIHS, Volvo updating the airbag software allowing the side airbags to inflate during the small overlap test.
The 2014 Subaru Forester has not yet been subjected to the small overlap test, so it must make do with just a Top Safety Pick rating until the IIHS tests small utility vehicles, which is expected to happen later in the spring.
It seems like the retro design aesthetic in autos might be petering out, with even a former poster child like the Ford Mustang taking a step in a more modern direction. Sometimes those updates of old-school models really worked well, though. Just take a look above at the Lincoln Continental concept from 2002 that took the extruded shape of the 1960s version and updated it for the new millennium.
Now there's a chance for this gorgeous concept to take a spot in your garage, as RM Auctions is selling it as part of a 130-plus-car, no-reserve auction of the Sam Pack Collection on November 14 and 15, in Dallas, TX. Among the lots for sale are a number of Fords, including several recent concepts from the brand. "My collecting philosophy is simple: buy what I like, but always with an emphasis on quality," Pack said in the auction announcement.
The Continental concept absolutely nails the mix of modern and retro. Its perfectly crisp lines make the shape appear hewn from a single piece of metal, and there's just the slightest ornamentation with the angled, chrome slats in the grille and chrome strips over the wheel arches. It even retains the suicide doors from its inspiration.