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What do you think Ford needs to change?

uh60james

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What changes would you like to see made to ensure the survival of Ford? I'm sure some will have some long winded answers to that question, but here is what I would probably change based on the information that is available to me and my opinion.

Drop Mercury, I don't know what kind of sales numbers the brand has but I don't see many driving around. Not to mention they are all rebadged Ford vehicles with some minor cosmetic changes. Lincoln could use some fresh ideas, drop the Mark LT, I have seen one on the streets. Its not practical for a truck. I think they are moving the right way with the new Navigator and MKZ. The LS and Towncar are still some very expensive plain looking outdated vehicles needing change. I'm not too fond of Mazda but it seems to be pretty popular, perhaps Ford can borrow some of their ideas for there own badge. Jaguar, Land Rover and Aston Martin. Certainly Ford could better focus there attention elsewhere, I dont know how they affect the bottom line, but if any of them are not positive they need to go now. Ford seems to be focusing on big SUV's and Trucks even today. I opened up there website today and what the first thing I see, the 2007 Expedition. Gas prices are dropping and SUV sales are probably going to rise again, however what happens when the prices go back up again. Ford is going to be caught with there pants down yet again. Hybrids, hybrids, hybrids, including SUV and Truck Hybrids. Last thing drop the Freestar.
 


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'97 V8

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I think they need to work on better gas mialge vehicles. the japs and all them have bigger engines with good milage while we have smaller engines with crappier miage in some cars. Interior quality needs to goup. Thye shoulkd have someone who should physically go over the vehicle before it goes on the lot.

As for dropping mercury i strongly disagree. They may not be popular where you live but in ohio they are. I see more mountaineers then i do explorers in Lima. One time there were 6 cars ina rom that were mercury's. A first gen mounty a second a third (i sh!t you not) then a sable then the minivan and then a mariner.
 




dreamr

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Hmm well lets see.

Ford is losing ground in all there subsidiary companies. But let's just stick to the ford line-up.

As I see it they have way too much of the same crap going on in all their line-up!

As to performance vehicles they are doing well with the stang in all it's configurations. However they should spend a bit more time sporting the focus up to the level that most of the other companies sport compacts are at. I mean the focus can be built but.......you start way ahead with any of the others. Thinking domestic how does a focus stack up against a Chevy Cobalt SS or a Dodge Neon SRT-4? It doesn't.

Sedans in general. They have several, but they are all the same in many ways. Here ford needs to narrow itself down to 3 main classes and really focus some attention in all areas. Bring back the Escort as a 30-40 mpg hybrid, Keep the taurus just work on more fuel efficiency. Then of course you must have the overpowered luxury sedan such as the 500, but it needs some work and again better fuel efficiency.

With the SUV's they can leave the Explorer as their Mid size and the Expidition as the full size. Better gas mileage would be great, but not neccessary. They already did a good thing with the Hybrid Escapes. What they really need here is something to compete with the Hummer 3. Perhaps bring back the Bronco name with solid front and rear axles and perhaps revive the 5.0 drivetrain for it as an option and the 4.0 SOHC as standard issue.

Trucks. The ranger is great as long as they never go IRS.
Full size they already have a good line-up.
 




JDraper

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Truly make quality Job #1 and fix the customer service issues!!!
 




Paul Gagnon

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Ford did drop Mercury a few years ago and found that there was too big of a gap between Ford and Lincoln so they brought Mercury back.

What Ford needs to do is to try and be if not on the cutting edge, at least a lot closer to it. Most Ford cars are very boring and conservative. There is nothing really exciting in the lineup other than the Mustang. The Fusion, 500 and Focus are ho hum boring uninteresting cars. People need transportation but they want it to look good and perform well too. Make style and performance available to the masses. They also need to bring back station wagons, not fake wood panelling and all that but well designed station wagons with optional AWD. They already have a couple of great ones at Volvo but they need some Ford and Mercury branded wagons. People who need station wagons are stuck with SUVs or minivans even though they don't want to drive trucks or vans. That makes them unhappy with their brand new vehicle and they will likely go elsewhere when it comes time to buy again. Most important of all is to make vehicles that are comfortable for people of a wide range of sizes and heights to drive. A low roofline may be sexy to look at from afar but it makes getting in and out of a vehicle hell and driving uncomfortable. People should be able to get into and out of their cars without being a contortionist. People should be able to sit up straight in their cars and trucks ('02 - up Explorer immediately comes to mind) without getting an eyefull of visor or having to recline the seat just to avoid bumping their head on the roof. Ford Also needs to have more engine options. For all but the F-Series Superduty there are usually only two choices (and in some cases one) per model. There should be at least three, maybe four for each model. More engine choices with fewer models would work much better than more models with few engine choices. The performance gap between the base engine and the optional engine is often so large that people can't justify either so they go elsewhere. Diesel engines need to figure much more prominently in the picture. Clean quiet efficient diesels should be an option on almost every model. There is no excuse for not having diesels available.

As far as the person calling the 500 overpowered, it's a slug.
 




SoBeLover

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Paul Gagnon said:
Most important of all is to make vehicles that are comfortable for people of a wide range of sizes and heights to drive.

Amen to that Paul. I totally love my Explorer, but wish my seats were wider as I'm a big girl. Bucket seats for people like me don't work so well. Give us an option for wider seats, even if it means losing the console in the middle...which I really don't use anyway. I'd also like to see a hybrid Explorer and a diesel Explorer too. They should lose the Excursion if they haven't already done so. The Expedition is plenty big enough, except for a very large family
 




96ExplorerXL4x4

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Start to import those RWD Aussie cars to the US.
 




Paul Gagnon

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SoBeLover said:

They should lose the Excursion if they haven't already done so.


Actually I think that they should have kept the Excursion but lowered the price and marketed it more towards corporate fleets. A 4x4 3/4 ton diesel SUV is perfect for many tradesmen. The problem is that they marketed it as a luxury vehicle instead of a utility vehicle. Tons of people could have made use of one but at $70,000 + up here there are not too many on the road. If they were still in production and more sanely priced we would have bought five of them at work. The vehicle was sound but the marketing was flawed.
 








Aussie Explorer

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What you whant is one of thease :D

Albury%202004%20035_1.jpg
 




Aussie Explorer

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The above is 5.4Ltr Quad cam V8 Falcon XR8

Or in the XR6Turbo 4.0Ltr In-line Turbo 6 Duel cam

0544.jpg


0545.jpg
 




Paul Gagnon

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Aussie Explorer said:
What you whant is one of thease :D

Albury%202004%20035_1.jpg

Aussie Explorer said:
The above is 5.4Ltr Quad cam V8 Falcon XR8

Or in the XR6Turbo 4.0Ltr In-line Turbo 6 Duel cam

0544.jpg


0545.jpg


I'd buy one of those in a heart beat. Unfortunately Ford doesn't have the balls to sell something like that here in North America and most other manufacturers don't either.
 




CodePoet

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focus on quality...main thing in my book. I have an f150, decent quality but it will be the last new ford i ever own. It's underpowered, and boring in pretty much every way.

Next truck will be a 78-79 f2/350...screw this new crap.
 




JDraper

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CodePoet said:
focus on quality...main thing in my book. I have an f150, decent quality but it will be the last new ford i ever own. It's underpowered, and boring in pretty much every way.

Next truck will be a 78-79 f2/350...screw this new crap.

Dang, you get the 4.6 F-150? I've got an 05 Lariat SCrew with the 5.4 and it's got good power and very well trimmed out. By far the best riding, best driving full size truck I've ever been in.
 




OZexplore

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Paul Gagnon said:
Unfortunately Ford doesn't have the balls to sell something like that here in North America and most other manufacturers don't either.
GM does, pontiac gto is aus made
http://www.pontiac.com/gto/360.jsp

the aussie version looks much better
http://www.autospeed.com/cms/A_1436/article.html

then there is the race version with a 427 unfortunatly they only built 2 and they thrashed everything incuding vipers,lambghini diablo, porsche GT3's

http://www.holden.com.au/www-holden/action/conceptcar?modelid=20006
 




Paul Gagnon

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Paul Gagnon

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Paul Gagnon said:
Actually I think that they should have kept the Excursion but lowered the price and marketed it more towards corporate fleets. A 4x4 3/4 ton diesel SUV is perfect for many tradesmen. The problem is that they marketed it as a luxury vehicle instead of a utility vehicle. Tons of people could have made use of one but at $70,000 + up here there are not too many on the road. If they were still in production and more sanely priced we would have bought five of them at work. The vehicle was sound but the marketing was flawed.

Further to this:

The real failure of the Excursion was that, unlike the Suburban that it was created to target, there was no half ton partner. Lots of people want the utility and space of a fullsize SUV but don't want the harsher ride and greater fuel consumption of a 3/4 ton. In this respect Ford completely misread the market. Had they produced the (now just coming to market) Expedition EL in half ton and 3/4 ton light duty (ie: similar to the F150 7700 package) at the time of the introduction of the Excursion they would have been extremely successful and possibly still had room left over in the market for the Excursion to be aimed at the commercial fleet. However, they only produced the 3/4 ton heavy duty Excursion perhaps because they misunderstood the market but more likely because the higher GVWR allowed them to remove it from their CAFE calculations.
 








Bwana Bob

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People need transportation but they want it to look good and perform well too. Make style and performance available to the masses. They also need to bring back station wagons, not fake wood panelling and all that but well designed station wagons with optional AWD. They already have a couple of great ones at Volvo but they need some Ford and Mercury branded wagons. People who need station wagons are stuck with SUVs or minivans even though they don't want to drive trucks or vans. That makes them unhappy with their brand new vehicle and they will likely go elsewhere when it comes time to buy again. Most important of all is to make vehicles that are comfortable for people of a wide range of sizes and heights to drive. A low roofline may be sexy to look at from afar but it makes getting in and out of a vehicle hell and driving uncomfortable. People should be able to get into and out of their cars without being a contortionist. People should be able to sit up straight in their cars and trucks ('02 - up Explorer immediately comes to mind) without getting an eyefull of visor or having to recline the seat just to avoid bumping their head on the roof. .

Well, they do have a couple of wagons, but I don't think they are selling very well. There's the Focus wagon: More cargo space than the Escape or the Subaru Outback, but kinda basic. Put AWD, the 2.3L engine, bigger tires, sportier styling in the Focus wagon and they could compete with the Sube's, which are very popular here in NJ. Then there's the Freestyle wagon: AWD from Volvo, but underpowered, odd size tires, uninspired styling. It looks like a lowered Explorer from the front, a minivan from the back, and a wagon from the side. The AWD is nice, but it needs more ground clearance and the option for more aggressive tires. ( Hey, remember the old AMC Eagle AWD wagon?) How about making a "sport wagon" out of the Fusion, or is that what the Edge is supposed to be? I like wagons. I had a small wagon before I got my Explorer, but I haven't seen a wagon yet that could replace the Ex. I'd like better gas mileage, but I don't want to give up the ruggedness, cargo space, and that high, commanding view of the road.




Bob
 


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briwayjones

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I think they should get a good small car selection going to compete with the Japanese companies. Like someone said come out with some more exciting design outside and inside. They are getting boring. Better qualitiy, I feel the quality has gone down since the 90's. I think quality should be #1 even if it costs more. I think they shold inovate and come up with new technology. They have just been sitting back letting other companies come up with ideas and then add them a few years later. More option selection. They are very limited with options. For instance like all manufactures you have to buy a $2000 power package to get tilt steering or something. Despite the demand don't cut the manual transmissions like they are doing. And market their advantages. Better gas mileage, more power, cheaper to make buy and maintain, more control. I think you could get more people to buy them if they new you can get better gas mileage with them. And when they do offer manual trans. just don't offer it with the smallest engine only. If you're going to put manuals in the Explorers like they used to, than just don't offer it in the V6 but also offer it in the V8. If you have to put a stronger trans. in it because of it than so be it. Don't offer only AWD in the V8s ect. Bring the Explorer back to it's roots, a real SUV, a real truck. Solid rear axle ect. Make it to compete with the Xterras and FJ cruisers like it used to be able to do. Or make another SUV that does. Listen to their customers. I think Ford lost touch with their customers a long time ago. That's all I can think of for now.
 




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