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Why Ford, Why????

Discussion in 'Auto Industry News' started by Kris Guilbeaux, June 30, 2000.

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  1. Kris Guilbeaux

    Kris Guilbeaux Elite Demon Secretary Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    Does any one know why ford is not putting a manual trans in the explorer any more. I am sure they could fit a nice 5-speed behind the SOHC. But they are not... Why is this...
     
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  3. rpenner54

    rpenner54 Moderator Emeritus Moderator Emeritus

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    The same reason that the newer Explorers have all those "neat" features so they can sell them to the grocery getter people out there that are buying these pieces of Equipment. Its funny when Ford comes on these trips with us they ask us all kinds of questions and they are all legit. However the majority of the info we give them of stuff we would like to have ie, solid front axles, real transfer cases with levers ect... all go into that round file. Just because its not that sort of manual have to do it yourself stuff that sells! No matter what we as an off-road community want the majority which is the Grocery getter soccer mom type of person is going to get what they want. Why do you ask? It all boils down to a few things. The first most is money. No explanation needed. The second is why would Ford not keep going in the luxury/conveince type of direction that they have been heading towards the past few years when the Explorer sells so danged many vehicles every year. The only reason Auto Manufactors would accually do something as drastic as engineering a 5 speed to go behind the SOCH engine is if all of the sudden sales dropped completly and they needed to get some way to start selling these vehicles again. Otherwise Ford is never going to produce a real off-road vehicle again. Specially with what happened to the proposed Bronco.

    Sorry for ranting for a bit but I just figured I would get out whats so obvious to me and not so to others. :)
     
  4. The Godfather

    The Godfather Active Member

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    Ford doesn't want a 5-speed in anything but the ZX3 and stang. My SHO would be awesome with a 5speed, but again they decided to axe it for the 96+. As said before, it all comes down to $. As for people who actually use their car for fun, they get neglected. I saw a commercial for an Explorer just now, it was going through a city and some guy was talking about how luxurious it was, made me sick.
     
  5. Kris Guilbeaux

    Kris Guilbeaux Elite Demon Secretary Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    It just seems to me that they could at least offer the 5-speed. Even if you have to special order the car. If we buy new we alway special order. But ford just keeps giving us reasons to buy used these days, because the cars were better back then. My family is now looking to buy a Mustang GT for my dad and my sister(her first car) to share. But as it goes there are only two year models we will are considering 94&95... Ford just dose not make cars like they use to...
     
  6. Stephen

    Stephen Moderator In Memoriam Elite In Memoriam

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    People can say they want something until they're blue in the face Kris, but if the numbers don't show a significant number of buyers want a 5 speed, they wont build it. On the whole in the compact/midsize, the entire SUV market actually, the demand for a manual is low. In fact, the demand is not high in any market, they even sell more automatic Corvettes than manuals. The majority of Americans just dont want a manual anymore.
     
  7. Lewdog

    Lewdog New Member

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    I read somewhere on the net (so it must be true) that Ford is planning to offer a manual 5-speed on the 2001 Explorer as a late-year option.

    Then I read that the project was being delayed.

    Didn't Ford just buy Land Rover? Maybe they'll bring the Defender back...That may have influenced the decision to kill the Bronco.
     
  8. Stephen

    Stephen Moderator In Memoriam Elite In Memoriam

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    Naa, it'd be too hard to bring the Defender back, they'd have to bring it up to US safety standards. Not worth it to Ford for the meager amount of sales.
     
  9. Rick

    Rick Pumpkin Pilot Staff Member Admin Elite Explorer

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    By the time they reached US safety standards it would be just like a Pinto :D
     
  10. tdavis

    tdavis Linux Guru, Jack of All Trades Staff Member Admin Elite Explorer

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    actually..

    The reason for dropping manual transmissions is easy.

    EPA.

    Yup. with an automatic, you can program in the shift points, and know the majority of the vehicles on the road will never be modified.

    When was the last time you was programmed on when to shift, to maximize fuel economy AND emissions?

    Yea, I figured that. Just like me, never. Nada.

    OH, and rick.. All I could think was "badda bing, badda boom!" as a reply for your post.. :D
     
  11. Stephen

    Stephen Moderator In Memoriam Elite In Memoriam

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    Tom, all true of course. They'd do it if the demand was there though, it isn't.
     
  12. Jim F

    Jim F Active Member

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    What year did they drop the 5 speed manual? By 98 owner manual shows the 5 speed manual attached to the OHV engine but not the SOHC nor the V8. I was considering the 5 speed when I built my 98 on Ford's website, but opted for the SOHC engine instead. I wonder if they phased the 5 speed manual out before they phase out the OHV V6 engine?
     
  13. BExplorer

    BExplorer Active Member

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    Why...

    When I bought my 94, two years ago, I was looking into a Windstar or Aerostar(used of couse), I bought the Explorer just bescause it had a manual tranny on it. If it would not had it I would be driving a 96 Windstar and not on this board. For statistic, back in 93 I bought an Escort(manual) and the guy told me ``Why not an auto trans, manual is just 5% of the demand``. Reason is I want control over my 4wheels, nothing programmed, I decide when and why. For the EPA mather I'm not sure it's the main reason, at work I drive a 99 Windstar Cargo with 3.0l and auto, I get almost the same mileage with my old 4.0l and manual, where are the EPA economy???
     
  14. Spectre

    Spectre Active Member

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    There was an editorial along these same lines a few months back in one of the car mags, I think it was Car & Driver. It also came up on World news Tonight a while ago. The sad fact is that too many people are just too damned lazy to row the gears themselves. The manual transmission is becoming extinct as an option on a lot of cars sold in America. Just like Kris said, they don't make cars like they used to. If you want a car with a manual tranny, you almost have to buy used anymore. That's part of the reason that so many people are willing to shell out more money for older musclecars and the like: they're easy to work on, and if you want a decent-sized car with a manual, they're all that's available anymore.
     
  15. Kris Guilbeaux

    Kris Guilbeaux Elite Demon Secretary Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    jim,

    The 2001 is the first year the Manual and the OHV engine are not availible. This is why I am mad... The style of the 2001 is nice but I would never even think of buying one due to the lack of options. Sorry Ford The Explorer sucks more every year. It just makes me want to hold on to my 92 longer and longer.
     
  16. BExplorer

    BExplorer Active Member

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    Why...

    I agree with Kris, my 94 is going to be pampered to keep it alive as long as possible. When it's rusted true and falling appart I'll tink of someting else, with manual of course(if auto-pilot is not the norm by that time).
     
  17. Jambo

    Jambo Member

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    re: Auto & Manual Transmission

    Here's what I would like to see... I say fine if they want to make purely automatic transmissions for the "simple" driver who wants to press the pedal and go. All we need is for some enterprizing auto enthusiast techie to play with the computer. Already there are companies who sell aftermarket chips for altering your computer settings. Two suggestions that I would like to see:

    1. Everything has a digital display these days. Including phones, kid's toys etc., but you have to buy an expensive vehicle to get one in it. Then, it only reads certain things. Why not make a computer interface here? Display my engine error codes in english right on screen? How about letting me tweak the shift points, or the fan start temperature, or whatever, simply by changing a value in the computer? A factory reset could be helpful, for when you screw up. This technology exists, and would not really be that expensive to produce either.

    2. Formula 1 cars have "manual" transmissions, but are entirely electronically controlled. Therefore, why not put shift "buttons" on the steering wheel in similar fashion? Thus you have "auto" for when you don't want to have to shift, and "manual" for when you do.

    These ideas are EASY. The technology is already half present in the cars today. There is probably just some silly marketing reason why they refuse to implement it. So, we just wait until someone 3rd party sells the mod kit :) :) :)
     
  18. mrsteve

    mrsteve Active Member

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    The "clutch-less" manual transmissions are available on Audis now. The shifters are behind the steering wheel. The thing is that most people that own an Audi 1.Don't even know the shifter is there or 2. Would rather just keep it in automatic. Honestly there are sometimes when I would like a manual. Like when I am going through a curving road or where it is really hilly. But for rush-hour commuting and 5 mile back ups I would rather let the transmission work on it's own.
     
  19. Stephen

    Stephen Moderator In Memoriam Elite In Memoriam

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    I've driven the Manumatics (as I call them). There are ones with F1 style buttons and there are ones with notches in the gear lever. Its not the same feeling as a Manual, mainly because it shifts at the same point anyway, you can just shift BEFORE, not AFTER the shift point.
     
  20. Jambo

    Jambo Member

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    This "manumatics" dilema is easily corrected as well. I did not realize that some cars will only shift early as described. This is just not acceptable!! The whole purpose of a manual is to have *complete* control over the vehicle. This is what I prefer. My first three cars (and only three cars) before my explorer were stick shift. Two Mustangs and a T-bird. My wife tried to learn on my T-bird and gave up in frustration. I am not too upset with the Explorer. It's a truck after all, not a race car. Besides, automatic is better for towing, and seems to make more sense for this kind of vehicle. But if I was looking to buy one of those new 2-seater T-birds or some other sports car, I WOULD NOT buy an automatic.
     
  21. 2001ExpSport

    2001ExpSport Elite Explorer

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    Like I saw above, nobody wants to drive a manual SUV. Yes, the 2001 Exp is definitely targeted for the lazy yuppie going out to get his cup of Starbucks(cringe). It's all about the dallor bill my friends, what sells is automatics, what sells are those god awfal moron 'manumatics'. Why on earth would anyone think that a 'manumatic' would be fun....NOT. Sorry, I am on the manumatic thing here for a sec, everybody I have talked to that has driven a 'manumatic' said it was just like driving an....um...AUTOMATIC. OK, I think manumatics are stupid...there, I said it.
    As for the new Explorers, I agree, a manual would be nice. That is if I was going out to tear up the trails. We all know why we like manuals, control. Granted I am a manual man myself, I own a 2000 Mustang GT. Now when you talk about the aspect of manuals vs automatics, this is definitely a manual car. Why do people buy and automatic Mustang GT? Someone please tell me. I have to shake my head whenever I see that auto in a GT. On the other hand I enjoy that fact that I don't have to manually shift my Exp. I do a lot of city driving to construction sites and I do incure a lot of traffic. It is nice and considered a 'luxury'. It still does all the great grunt work, lumber, tools you name it, it will haul it.
    What is my point? I have no idea, why am I here? I guess it boils down to this: I enjoy my Fords and I try not to spend time getting upset that they didn't have a manual for my Explorer. Enjoy your Fords, have fun, if you don't like what Ford is doing...go buy a Chevy.
     

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