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GearheadGrrrl

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  1. GearheadGrrrl

    New light & medium duty news

    Same here- I was working at a Mercury dealership when the Ford dealer across the street got in their first 1970 Louisville. Was only an LN500 gasser with the 300 cube 6, but everyone was impressed with the cab layout, instrument panel, wiring and plumbing, and other details. That Louisville was the talk of both dealerships for days...
  2. GearheadGrrrl

    New light & medium duty news

    Overdrive was an "opinion leader" for owner operators, who were 20% of the market back then, and probably less than 10% now. As for service availability, some like Boyer Ford in the midwest did a great job and helped build the Ford heavy truck brand while some did nothing or next to nothing. Even if you didn't have a good dealership, All the 9000s and much of the smaller series came with industry standard components from Cat, Cummins, Detroit, etc. that could be fixed by just about any heavy truck repair shop.
  3. GearheadGrrrl

    New light & medium duty news

    It all goes back to Ford's over reaction to the not real profitable Class 8 market in the 80s when most of the profit in a new truck went to the engine and powertrain suppliers. Fearful of the cost of the upcoming emissions standards, Ford (mis)management decided they could make more money sending big SUVs instead of big trucks down the Louisville assembly line and pretty much gave the big truck business including the new HN80 conventional to Daimler. A quarter century later Class 8 is owned by only four makers who have used their market power to raise prices to profitable levels and pretty much pushed outside engine suppliers out of the market. If Ford had smarter management they'd be #1 or #2 of the four surviving truck makers.
  4. GearheadGrrrl

    New light & medium duty news

    Another example of how Daimler has made Ford look like amateurs- You can see it too in the hundreds of options Freightliner and Western Star offer to make uplifts easier.
  5. Having a bum right leg, after some persuasion my employer had an aftermarket cruise control put on the mechanical Cummins L10 engined '86 Freightliner I drove, cost several hundred bucks because besides the computer it needed speed sensors and a servo to work the throttle as well as switches. About the same time Detroit Diesel brought out the Series 60 with electronic controls and cruise was standard- All the truck maker had to do was add the switches, maybe some sensors, and wire it up. Couple years later in '96 or so I test drove a VW TDI and same deal- Cruise control standard because all they had to do was put a switch or three on the end of the turn signal stick.
  6. GearheadGrrrl

    New light & medium duty news

    Ford is quite aware of the LNG/CNG/RNG market, that's partly why they developed the new 7.3 V8 and have "gaseous fuel prep" packages for so many vehicles. Daimler and some of the other medium and heavy truck makers can supply these alternative fuel trucks direct from the factory, Ford doesn't do that but that may be because most dealers couldn't handle gaseous fueled trucks?
  7. Once they went to electronic engine controls all it took to add cruise was some software and switches. Camera based low speed navigation assist is a repair cost accelerator and waste of chips, drivers should learn how to drive instead. Automatics? The best are really automated manuals and torque converter based automatics are only an advantage in city traffic and for heavy hauls- I'm talking permit "super loads", not a half ton on or behind an F150. Real on board scales are useful on a big truck that has to loaded right up to the weight limit, sounds like the F150 system is much cruder, and the aftermarket already beat them to it using data from the onboard "tilt" sensors.
  8. Why? I drove truck for decades and never got a ticket, overweight or otherwise- I knew my truck's empty weight, the weight of the load, and loaded it properly so I stayed legal.
  9. GearheadGrrrl

    Ford to Launch More Sub-Brands?

    As a Ranger and Buell owner, both products suffered from being sold by dealers more interested in pushing bloated full size pickups and cruisers instead of the world's best medium sized pickup and a great sport bike. Ranger buyers are not downmarket F150 buyers and Buell riders will not "grow up" and buy a Road Pig... Killing off Buell hasn't helped HOG(NYSE) sales any, and killing off the Ranger will not sell me an F150!
  10. GearheadGrrrl

    Bronco to get own showroom

    The limiting factor in Bronco and other "enhanced" 4WD sales is the lack of off road places to drive them. I live in a rural area, plenty of dirt township roads, and I have no problem traveling them with my FWD Golf TDIs with winter tires and bash plates. If you want anything more challenging the nearest ORV park that allows 4WDs is a hundred miles away, off roading on the other public lands will get you a big $$$ ticket, so if you want to test a Brocco's off road abilities out here you'll have to negotiate with a farmer.
  11. GearheadGrrrl

    Bronco to get own showroom

    1. What do you do with the Bronco showroom when the "off road" fad has passed? 2. The Land Rover style "off road course" can be a source of embarrassment once some U-tuber figures out that a minivan can traverse the course- Sorta like when one of the car mags got access to the master Land Rover course and traversed it with an Audi Allroad and a Volvo wagon!
  12. GearheadGrrrl

    New light & medium duty news

    If they have the production capacity, Paccar will get close enough to the heavy F series in pricing to capture some of Ford's volume- And doesn't hurt that while the heavy F series are pretty much "take it or leave it" options wise, Paccar will be happy to build to the buyer's spec with just about any compatable and legal combination of parts.
  13. GearheadGrrrl

    Transit Connect vs The Chicken Tax

    Sadly, having to have separate minivans (TC and Caddy) for NA and ROW markets pretty much undoes any savings. Can't blame Ford for that, it's another self inflicted wound from the stupid "chicken tax". As for dimensions, I've checked and the new Caddy and current TC are pretty similar- I like the TC because it's tall enough to haul a motorcycle which most minivans can't handle.
  14. GearheadGrrrl

    Transit Connect vs The Chicken Tax

    Ford had me confused too, or else Ford is confused and we had it right! I can't see any point in VW doing vans bigger than the Caddy/TC size as long as Ford is willing to do that for them- VW doesn't have much to offer between the car derived vans and Traton's MAN, Scania, and International trucks so may as well leave those chunks of the market for Ford to build. There's a downside to building two completely different TC/Caddy sized vans for NA and ROW, basically they've lost much of the advantages of collaboration and they're back to building two completely different vehicles... Ford should be capable of building the Caddy in Hermosillio.
  15. GearheadGrrrl

    Transit Connect vs The Chicken Tax

    The publicized plan was for VW to develop and probably build a version of their Caddy minivan on the MQB platform to be sold as the 3rd generation Transit Connect, while Ford will develop and probably build a version of the big Transit and Ranger to be VW's next generation Crafter van and Amorak pickup. Then the collaboration was expanded with VW sharing their MEB electric car platform with Ford. Now we're hearing that Ford will keep building their C2 platform Transit Connect In Mexico for at least the North American market, and who knows which minivan the rest of the world will get and from where. It could be argued that Ford has a plan and isn't showing their "hand" on purpose, but I'm beginning to suspect that Ford has no real plan and they're merely responding to the crisis du jour. As evidence thereof, Ford is getting pushback from the union at the Spanish plant that currently builds the Transit Connect over the loss of that product, while the UAW is confronting Ford over the absence of the new products that they were promised at Avon Lake plant. Meanwhile, Ford has promised 5 new products to a Canadian plant... Perhaps Ford has promised more new products than they can deliver?
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