Last post on Apr 25, 2013 at 9:28 AM
You are in the Ford Freestyle
What is this discussion about?
Ford Freestyle, Ford Taurus X, SUV
#3489 of 7481 In the Desert, You Can't Remember Your Name..
Jun 08, 2005 (6:23 am)
And the fold forward front passenger seat as well, then again, I recently made a 12ft. long persian rug fit in a new Mustang. Handler felt so bad not wanting to even help positioning because he was afraid of scratching it. Unfortunately when there's a sale, you just can't plan ahead on a vehicle to take.
That's still being worked out, mainly with the suppliers. Sometimes things can be delayed if there's workforce or contract issues. SO when it pertains to that, I don't like giving specifics since there might be a 80% error issue. The Mercury version still has some time to go. Ford will receive the glory of the Freestyle for quite awhile, then the "Edge" will steal it's momentum for many months, then the 3.5L Duratec will be introduced on the FS to gain it some momentum once again. Mercury will bank on that timing as well.
The FS benefits from a very sophisticated platform which allows to endure time with minimal changes to it's structure. It also exceeds future crash tests/roll over testing, that will be implemented in 2009. But with sophistication, you costs which are high for the D3 based vehicles. Which is where Lincoln steps in and be able to offset the initial costs for this platform investment. Let's remember when Jac Nasser was at the helm, he was wanting this platform to spawn the next generation Taurus, and economically, it was impossible to do so, so instead it was shifted another size/price class above.
The next Aviator, Cx-7 and "Edge" uses the CD3 architecture which is easier to modify, and therefore will post highe profits, than the D3 based vehicles.
#3490 of 7481 Re: Freestyle phase out? [willie19]
Jun 08, 2005 (9:34 am)
Don't believe everything you read. 2008 is a long time off in the rapidly changing auto world. The suggestion of the phase out is troubling, even if it just means a change in name. I wonder if the American companies know what they are doing. In any case, que sera , sera. We intend to keep our FWD Limited for quite some time, that's why we bought the extended warranty. Granted, no one wants transmission trouble even with a warranty. I wonder how many dealers are replacing transmissions when they should be replacing just the solenoid mentioned in previous messages. Much more money from Ford if they replace the transmission. I scouted out the service dept. of my dealer and was taken back by how little they knew about the Freebie. Ours just gets better the more we drive it. If the little wrench icon lights up, i will be p---ed.
Jun 08, 2005 (10:33 am)
I was wondering that myself. How many of these Freestyles left the lot (with their new owners) without getting the TSB updates done to the tranny's.
Could this be the reason why I'm still seeing CVT problems? Lack of dealer knowledge?
#3492 of 7481 Re: Freestyle phase out? [bruneau1]
Jun 08, 2005 (11:19 am)
''Don't believe everything you read".
You're right, Amigo. Our Freebie AWD Limited is going to a cradle to grave proposition.Glad we got ANT14 to clarify the BS article and calm things down.Love the smoothness of the CVT and hope Ford has this steep learning curve to improve its reliability. They already have TSBs on driveability problems and PCM re-programming. I also agree that there are different grades of dealerships and in the qualifications/training of their service dept. personnel.
We did not buy the extended warranty as my wife being the principal driver does not put in high mileage and is a very conservative driver. I think we are quite well protected with 5 year powertrain warranty. We also went out of our way (50+miles) to a well established Blue Oval and Ford Preferred dealer with a very well equipped Body Shop & Service Dept. They also sell/service those Sterling trucks and other commercial vehicles. These people are much better qualified than our local shoe-string operated Ford dealer.
I am trying different excuses to drive the Freebie during this breaking in period.
Haven't read the entire owners manual to get used to all the electronic multi-functions. I find the Index somewhat disorganized and difficult to find something specific without scanning through many pages and hopefully find out what you want. Either the procedure writers are getting lazier or maybe it's a case of the old dog not being able to learn new tricks.
A minor annoyance is the reflection of the top of the dashboard in the windshield on an overcast day and I'm also used to the gas filler door on the driver side.More important for me is that Ford should have included a cabin air filter to help alleviate my hay fever problem this time of the year.This feature is included in the Mazda6 wagon, so again this is a cheapskate decision by Ford when a cheaper family product has it.
#3493 of 7481 In todays society flooding is a major concern because....
Jun 08, 2005 (11:40 am)
Aren't you worried that you're flooding the market with all these crossovers and suvs? Have you guys thought about the long term effects? How many do you really need? You have the Explorer, Expedition, Edge, EcoSport derived B-class "car"(aka crossover), Escape, and Freestyle. Is there any plans to trim Explorer production? I can only see demand falling for the Explorer not going up and if the Edge is competing against the Highlander (a main Explorer competitior) wouldnt it make sense to replace the Explorer with a two prong approach with the Freestyle and Edge?
A possible lineup
Escape- fuel-concious consumers, but late 20's to mid 30's, still want that toughness
Edge- a Crossover, fuel-concious, still has toughness to it, but doesnt have the stigma that suvs have, a little smaller then the explorer.
Expedition- still wants the large size, fuel economy isnt the main concern, wants toughtness, reliability, 40 year old and older, lives in the south or midwest.
Ecosport(well just call it that for now)- Lives in an urban area, likes the idea of having an suv for the size, but is limited by their budget and gas concerns, doesnt need the size of the escape, maybe is in a relationship, but no family as of yet. mid 20's to late 20's.
I think what you're saying ANT14 is that you're getting rid of the Explorer, just not actually coming out and saying it. The proof is in the pudding, youre replacing the Aviator with a crossover aviator, and it would be a logical conclusion to also assume since youre bringing a ford version of the aviator crossver, that you'll be replacing the Explorer. Or at least making the Explorer a smaller percentage of your sales portfolio. Hence you diversify your risk, smaller batches, very Zara business modelish. I dont see how the Explorer can support itself on a seperate platform. I suggest keeping the Explorer around for awhile, but maybe by 2011 phasing it out if gas prices continue to rise.
Jun 08, 2005 (11:47 am)
So the escape is actually smaller, hmm..
Whats the point of the EcoSport then ANT14? The EcoSport and the Escape are nearly indentical.
Jun 08, 2005 (11:48 am)
#3496 of 7481 Re: guten morgen [dave2222]
Jun 08, 2005 (5:07 pm)
the ecosport stats seem pretty much like explorer stats. the graphic seems more like an escape. don't like the tire hanging out back.
Jun 08, 2005 (5:19 pm)
The dimension you quoted are Explorer dimensions. Ecosport is much smaller and it's based on the Fiesta platform. A business case was first being analyzed to bring the Brazillian Ecosport over, but the Bahia plant isn't known for the best quality, and it's selling quite well in S.America, therefore it would require more reinvestment in the factory, to supply N.A. markets, that specific vehicle.
Also, some re-engineering would be required to make the vehicle pass U.S. safety regulations, and E.P.A. certifications.
Sooooo, why not introduce the next generation of the Ecosport instead? ON a modified Fiesta platform, codenamed B1. And instead of making the vehicle, what the Ecosport is (a mini SUV)... introduce a new concept, like the SYNus concept instead of the same 2 box design most SUV's have. Make it a "Lifestyle" vehicle. Not a vehicle that someone MUST buy because they can't afford something else, but one that will attract and show someones individuality.
Or as my bestfriend says "Just because I can't afford Saks's, doesn't mean I can't shop at their outlet store"...
The Explorer sales are purposely declining because the market has shifted. The Explorer will not be forgotten... since it introduced a family friendly vehicle that was welcomed by many consumers and retains it's #1 sales crown in it's segment since it's introduction. This is a vehicle that sold with hardly any rebates for a good 8 years
One Explorer factory is being closed and production will shift to just one factory to improve productivity. Instead of huge rebates, better to just close one factory and consolidate since sales are shifting to car-based SUV. Anyone who seriously needs a vehicle for hauling, will always have the Explorer to count on. And now for 2006, the new Explorer will be even more robust, yet sophisticated and car-like in it's demeanor.
Keeping around the Explorer doesn't hurt any since it's developmental and engineering costs have been amortized throughout all these years. In other words, it's another cash cow as is the Crown Vic. Why kill it, if your posting great profits on them. There are certain vehicle that at certain sales level, need to die... Well in this case, it'll take a sharp nose-drive to 50-70K sales to kill the product.
If you can offer a vehicle with minimal investment over it's stablement (like the 500/FS businesscase) why not just go ahead and add it. If you capture a certain percentage of buyers buying the product and still make it economincally feasable, it's better to at least keep them in the family, rather than have them go to the competitor where they might never return to your showroom again.
And that brings other points such as building halo vehicle that bring a buyer into the showroom, but walks out with another vehicle. You might have a guy and his wife come into the showroom because the guy is having a Mustang kick, and when reality hits in, he'll walk out with someone that they both like and willing to compromise over (although I'm not sure about you, but I don't compromise my buying purchase, no matter how many years of marriage I have with someone... there's some things you Do NOT persuade me in, and vehicle purchase is one of them---it's sacriligious) but in other peoples case, that's one example.
But I won't go into that....
The point is, you must cover all your bases, and if it requires minimal investments, then so be it. The market will become more fragmented and we'll reach a time (as it is now in Europe) where having 15% market share is quite a feat, and this is manily because of competition. So to succeed, you must adapt, foresee the future and prepare yourself.
And overall as an industry, I can tell you there's quite a bit of personal debt out there. IN the 90's we were spoiled with truck based SUV's, low cost of fuel (and still is relative to inflation which is currently increasing) and a strong employment market. Now there's 3-4 car owning families (just for 2 people), who are stuck in 1-2 hours of traffic, to get to their suburban homes (which they can only afford with an interest only loan), forgetting that property taxes are going up, they can't meet next years increases in escrow and rising house insurance, and one bad check and it's downhill from there.
Thererfore vehicles are another expediture that more consumers will research. Not just as an initial cost basis, but also future maintenence and running costs, and those issues need to be addressed for future customers. And the internet has made it valuable for people to gauge their options, and for manufacturer's to gauge their consumers.
In the case of the Freestyle, it's covering basis with minimal costs. At a later time if it's case bcomes redundant, maybe the strongest member within the family, win.
Jun 08, 2005 (7:31 pm)
I am trying to decide on an extended warranty. My main concern is the transmission. I have looked at all the different transmission parts covered, but I am not a mechanic. Is there much difference in the coverage on the transmission on the different Ford ESP plans (Powertrain, Basecare, Extracare) to justify the extra cost?