Tuesday, April 24, 2012
Saturday, April 14, 2012
Friday, April 13, 2012
Ford took the automotive industry by surprise when it unveiled the 2013 Shelby GT500 back in November. With its 5.8-liter supercharged V8 producing 650 horsepower and new aerodynamics allowing for a top speed of 202 mph, the new GT500 is unequivocally the most impressive Mustang to ever come from the factory. However, with the next generation Mustang coming in 2014 as a 2015 model, what’s in store for the GT500′s future? Will there even be a Shelby GT500 when the next generation Mustang is introduced? Ford could easily return to using the SVT Cobra name or even go with a completely different moniker.
According to Shelby American president John Luft, though, the Shelby GT500 will continue on as a model well into the Mustang’s next generation. In an exclusive interview at the New York Auto Show last week, Luft told MustangsDaily.com that “the contract [with Ford] has been extended, and we have a long-term vision for our relationship. It has been extended through 2015 and beyond.”
Luft went on to explain that the relationship between Ford and Shelby has been extremely beneficial to both companies. “When something works you just don’t change it,” he said. “Clearly, having a Shelby in their stable as their halo car has really worked for them. Ford Motor Company loves it, their dealers love it, and we love it. It gives us a great platform. So we need Ford Motor Company to develop great base cars.”
According to Luft, Shelby plans to continue to focus on small production runs of cars like the GT350, GTS and GT500 Super Snake and leave the large scale operations up to Ford. “We could never produce the volume that they produce,” he told us. “We’ve sized our business to build 500-600 cars per year. That’s our sweet spot. To ever do another production run like the GT was where it was 6,000 or 7,000 cars, it’s not in our game plan.”
DEARBORN, Mich., April 12, 2012 – Cutting the weight of new cars and
trucks by up to 750 pounds by the end of the decade is a key component
of Ford's strategy to improve fuel efficiency. In order to help achieve
that goal, Ford Motor Company is partnering with Dow Automotive Systems,
a business unit of The Dow Chemical Company, to research the use of
advanced carbon fiber composites in high-volume vehicles.
"There are two ways to reduce energy use in vehicles: improving the
conversion efficiency of fuels to motion and reducing the amount of work
that powertrains need to do," said Paul Mascarenas, Ford chief
technical officer and vice president, Research and Innovation. "Ford is
tackling the conversion problem primarily through downsizing engines
with EcoBoost® and electrification while mass reduction and improved
aerodynamics are keys to reducing the workload."
Ford is investigating a range of new materials, enhanced design
processes and new manufacturing techniques that would enable automotive
structures to meet increasingly stringent safety and quality standards
while cutting weight.
"Vehicle weight reduction for our customers through intelligent design
with a materials focus has been a priority for Dow Automotive Systems,"
said Florian Schattenmann, director of Research and Development for Dow
Automotive Systems. "This partnership with Ford on carbon fiber
composites is a logical next step to progress already achieved through
the use of lightweight, high-strength polymers and structural bonding
Carbon fiber composites have been used in aerospace and racing cars
for decades due to their unique combination of high strength and low
mass. Until recently these materials have been far too costly for use in
high-volume mainstream applications.
Dow Automotive Systems and Ford have signed a joint development
agreement that will see researchers from the two companies collaborate
on several fronts. The development teams will focus on establishing an
economical source of automotive-grade carbon fiber and develop component
manufacturing methods for high-volume automotive applications.
The partnership will seek to combine the best of Ford's capabilities
and experience in design, engineering and high-volume vehicle production
with Dow Automotive's strengths in R&D, materials science and
high-volume polymer processing.
"Reducing weight will benefit the efficiency of every Ford vehicle,"
added Mascarenas. "However, it's particularly critical to improving the
range of plug-in hybrid and battery electric vehicles."
The joint development effort will also leverage work that The Dow
Chemical Company has already begun through partnerships with Turkish
carbon fiber manufacturer AKSA and the U.S. Department of Energy Oak
Ridge National Laboratory.
If the joint development effort is successful, carbon fiber components
may begin appearing on new Ford vehicles in the latter part of this
decade as product development teams work toward meeting new fuel
efficiency standards of more than 50 mpg and extending the range of
Wednesday, April 11, 2012
Out With The Old And In With The New
PLYMOUTH, Mich. (April 4, 2012) – Just as the weather changes for the better moving into spring, so does the ROUSH Stage Mustangs as they move into the 2013 model year. The newly designed 2013 ROUSH Mustangs add more grunt and aggressive looks to an already impressive redesigned Ford Mustang.
The Stage 3 Mustang is the pinnacle of the ROUSH "Stage" Mustangs. Improving upon the styling of the Stage 1 and the handling of the Stage 2, our Stage 3 Mustang adds its own piece of the pie by supercharging the 5.0L-4v Coyote powertrain. It is the perfect infusion of styling, handling and power. The Stage 3 embodies everything a muscle car can and should be.
At the heart of the Stage 3 is a newly updated ROUSH supercharged 5.0L-4v powertrain, pumping out a massive 565 horsepower and 505 lb-ft of torque – more than enough power to make you one with your seat as you stab the throttle. With power numbers like these, the 2013 Stage 3 marks ROUSH Performance's highest horsepower street legal Mustang to date. Force feeding air to the 5.0L engine is ROUSH's R2300 supercharger featuring Eaton's® TVS (Twin Vortices Series) patented technology. The TVS design delivers greatly enhanced thermal efficiency, produces higher volumetric capacity, and enables higher supercharger RPM's; all of which equate to more power and better fuel efficiency in a smaller, lighter package. ROUSH powertrain engineers calibrated the new Stage 3 to the perfect combination of power, drivability and durability.
But what is power if you can't put it down on the street/track? The Stage 2 and Stage 3 packages provide greatly improved handling over stock mustangs, allowing our cars to pull over 1g of lateral acceleration on the skid pad. Part of this handling package is the 18-inch by 10-inch cast aluminum, five spoke, chrome ROUSH wheels – wrapped in the ROUSH/Cooper (co-developed) RS3 ultra high-performance tire. The suspension system consists of a larger, stiffer front stabilizer bar to reduce body roll and provide balanced, neutral handling. It also includes a unique ROUSH designed anti-wheel hop kit, twin-tube shocks with unique valving, increased rate springs as well as upgraded bushings and jounce bumpers. ROUSH chassis engineers spent thousands of hours in development and testing to create the perfect set up to aid in acceleration, cornering, stopping and ride quality
To give the 2013 ROUSH Mustangs a more aggressive look, all of the new Stages 1 through 3 platforms receive the newly designed 6th generation ROUSH Aerobody package. Dubbed the "R6″, the new aero-body package incorporates a remodeled ROUSH upper grille, high-flow lower grille, corner fascia aero-pockets with driving lamps and front chin splitter. It also includes a new ROUSH hood scoop, rocker panel and rear fascia side splitters, a three-piece rear decklid spoiler, new ROUSH rear aero-valance featuring race-inspired diffusers, and is finished off with newly designed, integrated dual chambered, chrome exhaust tips.
"The 2013 ROUSH Stage 3 Mustang is by far one of the best performing Mustangs to come out of our shop" states Gary Jurick, General Manager for ROUSH Performance. "The idea is not to have the highest horse power out there, but to embody all around performance and combine that with an exclusive vehicle at a great value."
The Stage 3 also gets an RS3 graphics package available in multiple color combinations to allow owners to personalize to their taste. Inside the Stage 3 you get a custom gauge cluster, ROUSH embroidered floor mats, a ROUSH center console button and a Stage 3 dash medallion. All Stage Mustangs receive ROUSH badging throughout and a serialized engine bay plaque.
To further customize your ROUSH Stage Mustang there are several exterior, interior and chassis options available including rear quarter window louvers and the all new Stage 3 Interior Package consisting of Stage 3 embroidered leather seating with suede inserts, suede door panels and a suede shift boot all with highlight stitching. There is also a vent gauge pod with LED boost gauge, a suede wrapped steering wheel, and a convertible light bar just to name a few. Some chassis options include three 20-inch wheels choices, four different brake packages, ROUSH laser cut hood struts and red or black ROUSH engine coil covers. Additionally, the ROUSH dual chamber off-road exhaust system to put a grin on your face and let everyone else know you're not to be messed with.
All 2013 ROUSH "Stage" Mustangs are available in both coupe and convertible chassis and both manual and automatic transmissions. They are also all 50-state legal and covered by ROUSH's 3-year/36,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty. The 2013 ROUSH Mustangs are expected to start showing up on dealer lots by late April 2012.