I’ve always been a fan of Ford’s lineup ever since I was a little kid. But they have now rocked my world to the extreme. Not only do they have an amazing lineup of cars, but they are also pushing for energy efficiency in their factories and dealerships. How many large companies are doing that? Last year Ford started using solar panels and passive solar heating in some of their factories and planted acres and acres of trees in Brazil. They also started using soy based foam for many of their seat cushions instead of petroleum based foam.
In terms of the cars I was speaking of, Ford has the most fuel efficient mid-size car available for sale in the USA (beating even Toyota and Honda, the previous heads of the pack): The 2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid. Then, Ford decided that wasn’t enough, they want to re-design the way companies think of “trucks.” And they did. The new Ford Transit Connect (based off of the Ford Fusion) is a front wheel drive van that can carry 1,600 lbs of cargo and still deliver 25mpg. The Transit Connect received the 2010 North American Truck of the Year Award!
Ford is also developing an all electric version of the Transit Connect. Where will they stop? Hard to say. But it looks like they are going to continue on their path of energy efficiency with the release of the 2011 Ford Fiesta, which gets 40mpg!
It will be interesting to see what they do with their small trucks now. I love my 2000 Ford Ranger Supercab. I can seat 5 people, haul 1/4 cord of wood and tow 3,000 lbs and regularly get 20mpg. It’s pretty much the perfect little truck for me and with only 124,000 miles on it, I’m only maybe half way through it’s useful life. I plan on keeping it for 10+ years, at that point I will have to check out what is available on the market. With any luck, Ford with have something similar but with increased fuel economy (like they have done with all of their other vehicles over the last few years). Diesel Supercab Ranger chassis (so I can add a dump bed) with 2800lb max payload and 6,600lb max towing capacity that gets 25mpg with 154hp/280tq like what Australia gets? Please?