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2011 GT500 Gets Aluminum Engine

Now weighing-in 120lbs less

Tags: gt500, shelby, ford, aluminum, engine, 2011

2011 GT500 Gets Aluminum Engine
Ever since Ford introduced the modern Shelby GT500 four years ago, almost no one has complained about the prodigious power levels produced by its supercharged 5.4-liter V8. With as much as 540 horsepower and 510 pound-feet of torque in the 2010 model, there was no shortage of grunt. No, the issue was an excess of mass.

Before the contemporary GT500 was born, Ford had a blown aluminum block 5.4-liter V8 in the short lived GT supercar. However, when the engineers at Ford's Special Vehicle Team developed the GT500, they opted to mount the GT's cylinder heads on the cast iron block used in the big F-Series pickup trucks. After debuting a visual refresh for the Mustang a year ago, Ford has spent the last two months announcing fresh new powertrains for the base and GT models. That process has now come full circle with SVT rolling out a heart transplant for the Shelby GT500. The 2011 model finally has the aluminum powerplant we all wanted when it debuted, and the effect is absolutely en-lightening. Hit the source to read the full article!


Source: AutoBlog

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MotorTrend: Camaro SS vs Challenger R/T vs Mustang

A first look at the upcoming Pony War's

Tags: chevy, dodge, ford, gm, domestic, news, other

MotorTrend: Camaro SS vs Challenger R/T vs Mustang
Thirty-five years ago, the word "Watergate" was being re-Webstered from meaning "a snazzy apartment building in Washington, D.C." to "a coverup investigation involving the White House, two reporters who don't look anything like Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman, and a guy named 'Deep Throat.'" The most popular show on TV was about a grump named Archie whose tattered easy chair would go on to occupy a place in the Smithsonian. Half of the current staff of Motor Trend hadn't even been born yet (yes, Angus, we're getting old). That year, 1974, would also mark the final moment for decades in which America's streets would be prowled by all three current-gen versions of the most iconic-ever ponycars: the Chevy Camaro, the Dodge Challenger, and the Ford Mustang.


By Arthur St. Antoine
Photography by Brian Vance

Defying the oddsmakers, though, America's three trick ponies are back. And they're back big. Those days of yore are indeed long-gone -- but only because the new incarnations of the Camaro, Challenger, and Mustang are so far evolved from their famed predecessors they're recognizable almost by name only. Sure, the old cars looked cool and made lots of noise and got the girls, and some could even lay down a righteous longitudinal blast when the road arrowed straight. But none could match these current machines for blistering speed, cornering ability, braking power, driveability, reliability, and comfort. I mean, when I was 16, we didn't have fancy computers to make our cars run like winged chariots, and we didn't have in-car iPod adaptors (unless you count the Tijuana Brass on eight-track), and we sure didn't have...never mind. You whippersnappers today don't know how good you've got it.

What remains utterly unchanged, however, is a degree of nameplate loyalty and fan mania the likes of which might be matched by the current March Madness B-ball tourney. Or maybe not. After all, Camaro versus Mustang versus Challenger is deeply ingrained into the American psyche, the four-wheeled equivalent of the Hatfields versus the McCoys versus...uh, the HatCoys. Doesn't really matter which car we deem the best or what the numbers say -- the feuding factions will stand behind their favorites like a third-grader defending his mom against the schoolyard rabble. Might even be a few bloody noses thrown in if the hostilities escalate to the level of, "Yeah? Well, your Challenger's so fat..."

Hey, but we love a good debate (or at least starting one). So...we proudly present our exclusive, first-ever, side-by-side-by-side comparison of the new Chevrolet Camaro SS, the Dodge Challenger R/T, and the Ford Mustang GT. All the numbers, all our driving impressions...just one winner.

All three ponies share similar basic blueprints. The foundation: aggressive two-door bodywork, at least a semblance of a back seat and a trunk, brawny V-8 mounted up front and driving the rear wheels through an available manual shifter, suspension biased toward responsiveness over cushiness, price tag hovering somewhere in the affordasphere. All three have also obviously been injected, Jurassic Park-like, with DNA from their long-deceased ancestors.

Of the three, the Ford Mustang, of course, has been with us all along. True, soon after its 1960s heyday Dearborn's ponycar morphed into the heinous "Mustang II" -- an anemic lump of Iacocca-fueled cynicism that looked good only when Farah Fawcett-Majors was driving it and your eyes were closed -- but eventually Ford came to its senses and the Mustang was born again proud. The current, 2010 version boasts newly freshened sheetmetal, a vastly upgraded cockpit, and a SOHC, 4.6L V-8 making 315 hp and throaty exhaust sounds worthy of "Bullitt."

Last year, Dodge bravely resurrected the long-gone Challenger (missing since '74) with an all-new car that masterfully recalls the bandit-eyed original made famous by Kowalski's high-speed, existentialist dash in the 1971 movie "Vanishing Point." Though first available only in mega-output SRT8 form, for 2009 the Challenger gains a new R/T edition, powered by a 376-hp, 5.7L Hemi V-8 and available with a six-speed manual -- including retro-licious pistol-grip shifter (A V-6-powered SE coupe also joins the 2009 stable).

The newest entry, missing since 2002 and once feared RIP forever, is Chevy's Camaro. The structure, including an independent rear suspension, owes its roots to GM's Zeta global platform (i.e., the Australian Holden Commodore); the ravishing bodywork flows from the keen hand of South Korea-born chief designer Sang Yup Lee. Though available in base form with a superb, 3.6L direct-injection six making 304 hp, the Camaro in topline SS trim brandishes a 6.2L V-8 (GM's LS3 from the 2008 Vette) making a strapping 426 hp and mated to a six-speed manual shifter. (Opt for the six-speed auto, and the SS engine changes to the L99 6.2L V-8, rated at 400 hp and outfitted with Active Fuel Management capable of deactivating four cylinders when not needed.) Tires are 20-in. Pirelli PZero summer meats standard (if you're foolish enough to trade handling moves for curb presence, Chevy dealers also offer a 21-in. wheel/tire combo). Also standard: four huge four-piston Brembo brakes. Put simply, GM has left nothing on the table with the release of its reincarnated pony.

Tell war stories about the prowess of their long-departed ancestors to any one of these modern ponies, and they'll start rolling their eyes. "Grandpa? Huge biceps, skinny legs. More muscles than brains. Why, he couldn't even negotiate a tight corner without squealing at the top of his lungs. Smoked too much, too."

Simply, every member of this trio leaves its circa-1970s counterpart in the virtual dust. As in, these babies are fast. Though saddled with the most mass and only mid-pack power, the Challenger R/T nonetheless rips to 60 mph in just 5.1 seconds and knocks-down the quarter in 13.6 seconds at 104.9 mph. The Hemi engine is a beauty, gushing with torque (410 lb-ft) and unfailingly smooth from idle to redline. The six-speed manual carves through its gates effortlessly, and, says MacKenzie, "The pistol-grip shifter works surprisingly well." Loh concurs: "Nice seats and pistol-grip shifter, but a decidedly sedanlike seating position. High window sill, wide and low windshield, and dark interior give the Challenger a real musclecar feel."

The Mustang GT carries the least-impressive on-paper physique -- just 4.6L making 315 hp -- but like a bantamweight it packs a helluva punch. Nearly 600 lb lighter than the Dodge, Ford's pony rockets to 60 mph in a mere 4.9 sec and holds that edge through the quarter, nipping the lights in 13.5 sec at trap speed of 104.2 mph. Though the GT wears only a five-speed manual, the lack of a sixth cog doesn't hinder its majestic stride. The engine is sizzling, too, happy to whirl away near its redline while making music worthy of a hit single. Can't drive a Mustang GT to hear for yourself? Go play the chase scene from "Bullitt." The 2010 GT performs with the same electrifying movie-star soundtrack.

Wielding 50 hp more than its next-closest rival and sporting a standard six-speed manual, the Camaro SS theoretically holds all the performance cards. And it isn't bluffing. Despite the 3859 lb borne of the Camaro's use of a preexisting structure (and the inherent compromises thereof), 0 to 60 mph takes a mere 4.7 sec; the quarter mile just 13 sec flat at 111.0 mph. When equipped with the manual, the SS also includes standard launch control; the driver simply mashes the throttle, waits for revs to stabilize around 4000 rpm, and then dumps the clutch. The on-board HAL 9000 does all the fancy footwork. The system works well enough, but it's no match for an experienced human right foot. (Note the human-versus-computer-generated numbers in the specifications chart.) All our testers agreed that the Mustang GT sounds more intoxicating inside the cockpit (thanks to a carefully engineered sound pipe delivering just the best notes to the cabin), but from the outside it's a different story. The Camaro SS won "Best Tenor" honors from all who heard it rumble past. And, of course, it's got the chops to back up that "Don't Tread on Me" audio. So be forewarned. Don't tread on it.

The lightweight, Track Pack-enhanced Mustang GT posts the defining stats on the handling tests. Maximum grip is a neck-wrenching 0.95 g, and the GT circled our figure eight in just 25.5 sec (at a 0.70g average). The Camaro SS was nearly there, churning out a max lat of 0.90 g and running the ocho cones in 25.8 sec (at 0.80 average g). Far behind lagged the broad-shouldered Challenger R/T, good for just 0.82 g max and needing 27.5 sec (at 0.63 average g) to negotiate the figure eight.

Braking performance follows a similar pattern. Though wearing only conventional binders, the lower-mass Mustang GT hammers to a stop from 60 in just 108 ft. Blessed with those four big Brembos, the Camaro SS, though heavier, notches the win, stopping in just 105 ft. Then far behind arrives the Challenger R/T, needing a full 135 ft to reign in its forward motion. Uncle Isaac more or less predicted the outcome of this one.

"Pure sex," is Loh's description of the Camaro's bod. "Deep draw of the flanks makes for some lovely, lurid, almost cartoony proportions. This is the Jessica Rabbit of musclecars." Avers MacKenzie: "Exterior styling is dramatic, not retro. Front end a little too plasticky. Side profile is awesome -- aggressive hips, slammed roofline, perfect ride height. Rear lights a little sad-eyed; reverse lights look like afterthoughts." Inside, the Camaro blends 1969 cues with modern forms. "Steering-wheel rim profile odd," says MacKenzie. "Interior is dark, A-pillars thick. But you sit in the car, not on it as in the Challenger. Interior styling is cool -- order the four-pack of gauges on the console; it looks a bit Spartan without them." All of us noted the laughable, submarine-hatch trunk opening, an obvious example of exterior style holding sway over all else. But to MacKenzie's thinking, "If a trunk is important to you, buy a sedan." Or, one might add, a Challenger.

On exterior design the Mustang drew mixed views. "Surfacing is very modern," says Mackenzie. "Unlike Challenger, which has a pure retro stance, with wheels inside the body, the Mustang sheetmetal is teased out over the tires. But it looks like just another Mustang. No one will notice it. Ford has a real challenge figuring out what to do with the next one." Loh was considerably more upbeat about the cockpit. "From the aluminum Mustang emblem on the steering wheel to the soft-touch dash to the bright and cleanly styled instruments -- it's the biggest leap from the old car and one of the major reasons I'd actually considering owning one. Only downside: not enough cubbies for the articles in my manpurse." The Mustang also easily trumps the Camaro for rear-seat room and trunk space, though as Loh adds, "Who buys one of these for the back seat?"

Very troubling, though, is the Mustang's shoddy build quality. The driver-side window gapped open above 60 mph or in any high-g corner, allowing a tornado of wind and noise to intrude. If this turns out to be a common Mustang flaw -- we haven't noticed it on previous drives -- it'd be a complete deal-breaker (obviously, we plan to sample more GT test cars for evidence-gathering). We might also be more willing to overlook what might be a single-car defect if not for the Mustang's ill-fitting trunklid. When closed, you could easily slide a half-dollar coin through the undulating gap on the deck, and probably a Royale with Cheese through the cavernous maw near the license plate. This is shameful execution, as if the Mustang GT had been engineered and built not by Ford but by Trabant.

The Challenger may not top the performance charts, and its interior -- though nicely finished -- is the most familiar of the three (if you've seen a Chrysler 300, you've seen this cabin). But the Dodge is almost unbeatable for sheer Star Power. "Outside, the details are perfect," says Loh. "Chrome Challenger script (that now matches the gas cap), TR racing stripes, polished aluminum drag wheels. It really does look the business." MacKenzie wholeheartedly agrees: "Retro-style stance, proportions, surfacing, detailing are superb. A loving homage to the past. Optional retro-style wheels and R/T stripes are perfect, and worth every last cent over the base R/T package. Roomiest car of the lot, with a useable back seat and big trunk." Sure, the opening-night Camaro drew plenty of thumbs-up and frantic grabs for cell-phone cameras, but almost everybody loves the Challenger, too. At one of our photo stops, a group of young guys carefully perused each of our players. "Definitely this one," said one grinning critic, pointing to the big orange Dodge. Of the trio, it's the Challenger that most channels yesteryear; Dodge has perfectly balanced past and present.

Which is to say, on the subjective subject of styling, each of these ponies scores well. Pick your favorite flavor and enjoy.

Going into this test, and knowing the basic stats, we had an inkling how it might turn out. (All three cars, by the way, eke out impressive and nearly identical fuel-economy results -- though the Mustang's lack of a six-speed means it finishes last on EPA.) Never did we guess, though, how close the overall finish would turn out to be.

In third place, the Dodge Challenger R/T.

Third of three, but hardly last. As MacKenzie well sums up: "Hugely endearing personality. Even though the Challenger starts to fall apart dynamically above 7/10ths you can't help but like the big guy. It's sorta like a Heritage Soft-Tail Harley; a carefully crafted and easy to own reminder of a simpler, sunnier America." Astutely executed, fast, and sit-back comfortable, the Challenger is the pony you'd ride for a 50-state tour. On the downside, the orange bruiser simply can't carve with the precision of its rivals, and though it starts with a mid-pack base sticker ($30,945), adding the good stuff (six-speed manual, 3.92 rear axle, limited-slip diff, 20-in. wheels and tires, etc.) pushed the price of our tester to a trio-topping $38,270.

Finishing in second place . . . the Ford Mustang GT.

Mind you, this was a photo-finish. The Mustang with Track Pack blew us all away with its sublime steering, incredible front-end grip, stylish cockpit, and beauteous V-8. As Loh notes, "That's what most impressed me: Ford's two competitors had the advantage of sampling 45 years of Mustang DNA, yet they still couldn't pull out a runaway win." The Mustang scores well on value, too: base price for the GT is $28,845, and with Premium package, Track Pack, security package, and the comfort group, our test car totaled $34,330. The Ford might even have scored an upset, except it cannot match the Camaro's unfailing poise, its breathtaking power, or its styling drama. Those quality issues sure didn't help, either.

And so . . . our winner, the Prime Pony of the 21st Century is . . . the 2010 Chevrolet Camaro SS.

Considering all the ways GM could easily have got this car wrong, it's nothing short of a triumph how unquestionably the company got it right. The Camaro might trail the Mustang in handling sharpness, and there's no doubt it finishes last for cabin and trunk volume, but, well, you don't pick your pony for the size of its saddlebags. Graced with massive power, excellent efficiency, unfailing refinement, and show-stopping looks, the Camaro SS nails every essential for its segment. What's more, it's priced to steal. Base sticker for the 1SS manual: just $30,995. With the Boston Acoustics audio package, our cloth-seat tester climbed only to $31,490. Go nuts with the options pencil -- adding leather, power sunroof, ground effects, six-speed auto, and more stuff you really don't need -- and you can nudge the SS just over $40K.

So there you have it: Chevrolet claims the ponycar title, circa 2009. Now, go to it, Hatfields, McCoys, and HatCoys. We've been waiting 35 years to witness once again perhaps the all-time greatest feud in Autoland. Where's my cigar? Ah, there's the opening bell!

TEST DATA

CHEVROLET CAMARO SS DODGE CHALLENGER R/T FORD MUSTANG GT

Acceleration to mph
0-30 2.2 sec 1.9 sec 1.9 sec
0-40 3.0 2.9 2.8
0-50 3.9 3.8 3.8
0-60 5.1 5.1 4.9
0-70 6.2 6.5 6.4
0-80 7.9 8.1 8.1
0-90 9.4 10.2 9.9
0-100 11.1 12.4 12.3
Passing, 45-65 mph 2.1 2.5 2.3
Quarter mile 13.0 sec @ 111.0 mph, 13.4 sec @ 110.6 mph 13.6 sec @ 104.9 mph 13.5 sec @ 104.2 mph
Braking, 60-0 mph 105 ft 135 ft 108 ft
Lateral acceleration 0.90 g (avg) 0.82 g (avg) 0.95 g (avg)
MT figure eight 25.8 sec @ 0.80 g (avg) 27.5 sec @ 0.63 g (avg) 25.5 sec @ 0.70 g (avg)

Big Thanks to MotorTrend Magazine for the great Article.

Source: MotorTrend
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Flashback: 2002 Camaro SS Vs 2001 Mustang Cobra

A look back at a past shoot out

Tags: chevy, ford, gm, domestic, camaro, mustant, other

Flashback: 2002 Camaro SS Vs 2001 Mustang Cobra
With the new 2010 Camaro now in full production, Challengers rolling the streets and the re-designed Mustang for 2010 on its way I figure we should look back at the last face off between the Camaro and Mustang. As stated in the coming article It is hard to believe that the Camaro and the Mustang have been going at it in the performance world for a very long time now, still to this day it is as exciting as it was back when It all started in the 60s. Continue on to read an article from the past....02 Camaro SS vs 01 Mustang Cobra.


Full article found below provided by MotorTrend Magazine.
Source: MotorTrend
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2010 Ford Taurus SHO to debut in Chicago

The SHO model makes a return

Tags: domestic, ford, taurus, sho, debut, news, other

2010 Ford Taurus SHO to debut in Chicago
Ford has launched its mini-site for the 2010 Taurus, and in addition to including images of its new flagship sedan in all available colors (see updated gallery below), a clue has been discovered that may shed some light on the rumored return of the much loved SHO model. Mousing over the word "GALLERY" will produce a drop down menu at the bottom of which is a selection called "PERFORMANCE SERIES". Mouse over that guy and the message "COMING FEBRUARY 2009" is revealed.

The 2009 Chicago Auto Show occurs in February, which suggests that Ford will be debut this "Performance Series" of the Taurus in the Windy City. Will it be the SHO? We don't know, though prior spy shots of a SHO-badged interior suggest an affirmative on that one.

When Ford debuted the new Taurus at the Detroit Auto Show this week, mention was made of both the standard 3.5L Duratec V6 and the "optional availability of Ford's advanced EcoBoost 3.5-liter V-6, with an announcement regarding availability soon." So we expect that Ford will debut the 355-hp EcoBoost V6 in the Taurus at the Chicago show, but that doesn't necessarily mean it will be be wearing any Super High Output badges. Ford seems keen on building the EcoBoost brand name, as "EcoBoost" will appear alongside the Lincoln MKS, MKT and Ford Flex when those new models are ordered up with the same advanced engine.

Frankly, we hope Ford just calls it the EcoBoost Taurus and leaves "SHO" alone for now. The 2010 Taurus may share a name with the one that was offered with a Yamaha V6 back in the '80s and '90s, but the new one is a much larger, heavier car that's ill-suited for sport sedan duties. We'll reiterate our wish once again: a Fusion SHO tuned by SVT with a manual or dual-sequential gearbox, front-wheel-drive, weight saving measures and a small EcoBoost four-cylinder capable of producing a reverential 220 horsepower and return well over 30 mpg on the highway.

Source: AutoBlog

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AutoBlog: First Drive 2010 Mustang GT

autoblog takes the new mustang for a spin

Tags: domestic, ford, mustang, review, news, other

AutoBlog: First Drive 2010 Mustang GT
It's a new day and we all know what that means! Yet another post about the Mustang. Most of us here at Autoblog are unabashed Mustang fans. So when the call comes from Dearborn to drive yet another new Mustang, we invariably set about rearranging schedules. Such was the case last week. No sooner had we returned to frost-bitten Detroit after the LA Auto Show than the call came to return to SoCal. It was time to take the 2010 Mustang off the LA Convention Center stand and out into what passes for the real world in these parts.

Before we hopped into the updated Mustangs, Ford wanted to give us a refresher on what was being left behind. We were supplied with 2009 models to drive from our hotel to the staging area in Malibu. Anyone who has ever spent time in a 2005-09 Mustang is immediately aware that the weak link is its interior. In a word, it looked and felt cheap. The order of the day for the new 2010 model is refinement. Find out after the jump if Ford has made a Mustang worthy of competing in the now crowded class of modern day muscle cars.

When the S197 Mustang debuted as a 2005 model, it was actually the first Mustang ever to get its own purpose built platform that wasn't shared with any other Ford product. The Mustang has always been a solid selling car for Ford, which is why it's been produced uninterrupted for nearly 45 years. Nonetheless, the Mustang engineering team was working with a budget when that 2005 model was being developed. As a result, they put the focus on the mechanical bits at the expense of some of the touchy-feely stuff.

The result was easily the best driving Mustang ever, if not necessarily the best working environment for the driver. The 2010 model is clearly not an all new car. It is, however, a very significant refresh. The hard plastics that comprised the old dashboard are now gone, replaced with soft touch materials and real aluminum trim. The basic design concept remains but has evolved into something more grown up and functional, as well as more attractive.

When we revealed the new Mustang a few weeks ago, some of you complained that the exterior had hardly changed and wondered what all the fuss was about. Clearly the new version still looks like a Mustang, but when you put them side by side the differences become much more stark. The 2005 model was a huge leap forward and at the same time backward when it debuted. We still think it looks great and embodies what a Mustang should be with its long hood, short deck proportion, forward leaning grille and deeply set headlights.

Park it next to the new Mustang, though and the current model looks almost boxy by comparison. The DNA is there, but the even more aggressive nose, curved rear shoulders, more contoured flanks and chamfered rear corners take it to a whole new level. Call us fanboys if you must, for we surely are, but we definitely love this updated look. I say that having plunked down my own hard earned cash on a 2005 model soon after that car launched, which I still own.

After chief engineer Tom Barnes again reviewed the new Mustang's highlights, it was time to drive. Drew Phillips and I were handed the keys to a Kona Blue GT with the "Track Pack" and a 5-speed manual transmission. My own Mustang is one of the comparatively rare Sonic Blue versions and I've never been fond of the Vista Blue that replaced it in 2006. The Kona Blue is much more like Sonic but even darker, and if I were spending my cash again would opt for this color.

Ford had a Grabber Blue example for us when we went into the design studio to photograph the 2010 Mustang before LA Auto Show, and that's the same car Drew chose to shoot for this story. The Grabber Blue was less than enthralling under studio lighting with many details of the new body work getting lost. Out in the California sunshine, though, it was a whole different story. The rest of the new color pallet including the Gold and Dark Metallic Red are also stunners.

Enough about the crayon box, what is the 2010 Mustang like to drive? The key word is refinement. Refinement can be a double edged sword, though. Refining something too much can sap the life out of it. Wonder Bread is made from highly refined wheat and also flavorless. Give us a loaf of hand-made sourdough, rustic or paesano any day.

Just like a good loaf of bread, a car's character can be found in some of its rough edges. The sound and the feel of it. The heart of a car like the Mustang is its engine. You want to hear it rumble and sense the slight vibration as it turns over. Barnes' team has refined those elements of the Mustang that don't enhance its character in order to amplify those that do. Changes like reshaping the mirrors, moving the radio antenna from the front fender to the rear quarter and moving the windshield washer nozzles behind the trailing edge of the hood all cut wind noise inside the cabin. The result is that the sonic signature of the Mustang's 4.6L V8 has now been enhanced.

The new car has 3.5-inch tail pipes from which emanate a wonderful rumble when the engine is opened up. Once we turned off Pacific Coast Highway to head up through Topanga Canyon, we were still stuck behind some slow moving traffic. We backed off to fall away from the traffic, dropped the windows and a couple of gear ratios and floored it. The song that echoed off the canyon walls would make the heart of any performance car fan melt. A deep, throaty exhaust note emerged with no hint of drone. It's the kind of thing that makes you thankful for $1.50 gas, because you can keep stabbing the throttle to hear it again without wallet remorse.

After what seemed like an eternity behind slow poke SUVs wasting curves we would kill for in Michigan, we finally got some relatively open space to run. However, it wasn't until we saw the sign along Mulholland with the squiggly line and "Next 2 Miles" message that we could truly appreciate what the Mustang engineering team has wrought from this seemingly unsophisticated chassis.

We hear the constant nattering about the Mustang not having an independent rear suspension. Frankly, it's quite simple. It doesn't need it. Most of the people who race Mustangs do it on drag strips where a live axle is the best weapon. Elsewhere, Mustang FR500s have been winning consistently in the Grand Am series for the last several years.

Along Mulholland Drive, the 2010 Mustang GT proved to be very neutral with nary a hint of understeer. The brakes dissipated speed with a firm, easily modulated pedal and squeezing the throttle blasted the car away from apexes. Body roll was held to a minimum and the 'Stang had excellent mechanical grip. There was some pretty rough pavement along our drive route, but the chassis kept the tires firmly planted on the ground following whatever contours were there. There was none of the dreaded side-stepping typically associated with rear-drive live-axle cars.

The car we drove was equipped with the optional Track Pack that adds retuned springs, dampers, bushings and upgraded brake linings. The Track Pack also includes 19-inch summer tires in place of the usual all-season rubber. In spite of the more performance oriented tuning, the ride remained comfortable on even the roughest pavement we encountered.

Despite this being a driving report, we have to mention that the new interior is also a huge step forward for the Mustang. The new shape of the console and door arm-rests is a welcome change and the chamfered spokes on the steering wheel make it more comfortable to hold. One thing we'd like to see further improved is the seats. The front seats are comfortable and offer decent thigh support, but they could use more lateral support. An optional sport seat would also be a welcome addition.

No V6 models were available for us to drive, but that's just fine. The 2010 Mustang GT is every bit as good as our previous favorite Mustang, the 2008 Bullitt, but with a much improved interior. Now the 2010 model is the best production Mustang ever, and barring any big price increase, will remain the best performance car bargain on the road. Now where did I put that Wilson Pickett CD?

Source: AutoBlog

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Ford Mustang GT for $18,995?

Yes its true, at Galpin Ford

Tags: domestic, news, ford, mustang, other

Ford Mustang GT for $18,995?
Yes, the title is correct and not a typo. Galpin Ford one of the best ford dealers in the world is selling the 2008 Mustang GT for way under price....$18,995 to be exact. Read the press release below for more.

PRESS RELEASE

GALPIN FORD ANNOUNCES AN UNPRECEDENTED SALE ON THE NEW 2008 FORD MUSTANG GT

Premiere Local Ford Dealer Offers America's Sports Car for Only $18,995

NORTH HILLS, Calif. (December 8, 2009) – Galpin Ford, the #1 volume Ford dealer in the world, is offering an extraordinary low price, of $18,995, on 40 Mustang GTs all with an MSRP of $28,160. That represents a savings of nearly 1/3 on America's favorite sportscar. Galpin recently obtained 40 2008 Mustang GT V8 Coupe vehicles from a special performance fleet at a significantly reduced price and is passing saving on to customers. These 40 specially priced vehicles are available at this exclusive low price for a limited time only.

"As the largest volume Ford and Mustang dealer in the world, we are able to offer enthusiasts such exclusive low prices on their favorite vehicles," said Terry Miller, General Sales Manager for Galpin Ford. "This opportunity came to Galpin and we are very excited to extend this unprecedented offer to our customers."

The 2008 Mustang GT has a 4.6 ltr 300hp V8 engine, power windows, power door locks, cruise control, tilt wheel, 17" premium painted cast aluminum wheels, anti-lock brakes, traction control, 6 way power drivers seat, interior upgrade package, and a Shaker 500 audio system with six disc CD player and MP3.

In addition to the 40 specially priced Mustang GTs, Galpin's All Mustang Showroom features a selection of Saleen, Dan Gurney, Roush, and Shelby Mustangs. And, of course, world famous Galpin Auto Sports is on site to customize all makes and models.

About Galpin Motors
With over 60 years in business, Galpin Motors is the world's largest volume Ford dealership for the 18th consecutive year. Founded in 1946 and headquartered in Los Angeles' San Fernando Valley, Galpin is comprised of a family of quality automobile brands including Aston Martin, Ford, Jaguar, Lincoln, Mercury, Mazda, Honda, Panoz, Saturn and Volvo. For additional information on Galpin Motors and the lineup of "Galpinized™" vehicles, contact Ford General Sales Manager, Terry Miller, (818) 778-2182/ tmiller@galpin.com, visit the dealership showroom at 15505 Roscoe Blvd. in North Hills, Calif. or visit the company website at www.galpin.com.

About Galpin Motors
Galpin Motors, the world's largest volume Ford dealership for the 18th consecutive year was founded in 1946 and is headquartered in Los Angeles' San Fernando Valley. Galpin is comprised of a family of quality automobile brands including Ford, Aston Martin, Jaguar, Honda, Lincoln, Mercury, Mazda, Saturn and Volvo. For additional information on Galpin Motors contact Marketing Manager Jeff Skobin, 818-778-2540/ jeff@galpin.com, visit the dealer showrooms at 15500 and 15505 Roscoe Blvd. or visit the company website at www.galpin.com


Source: AutoBlog

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Ford: Alan Mulally to drive Escape to Congress

Doing what GM is, driving a hybrid over flying

Tags: domestic, ford, auto, industry, news, other

Ford: Alan Mulally to drive Escape to Congress
Ford CEO Alan Mulally has made the politically correct decision for his return trip to Washington DC this week and is skipping the company jet. In fact, he's skipping the airport altogether and hitting the road in an Escape Hybrid. It seems like it would have been better to grab one of the brand new Fusion Hybrids, but no one in Washington should be too upset at the choice of the Escape. The last one we tested for AutoblogGreen averaged 33 mpg. Perhaps he'll even take one of the prototype plug-in hybrid versions, although that wouldn't make much sense for the nine-hour drive. In our reader poll you actually opted for the Fusion by a wide margin, followed by the Fiesta and Mustang. The Escape came in at a respectable fourth.

Source: AutoBlog
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Official 2010 Mustang Press Release

Officially official information...

Tags: domestic, ford, mustang, gt, news, other

Official 2010 Mustang Press Release
Ford finally took the cover off the "refreshed" Mustang for the 2010 model year.

Click the jump for full Press Release and Photos.


PRESS RELEASE

LEANER, MEANER 2010 FORD MUSTANG MODERNIZED,
WITH MORE REFINEMENT, NEW LOOK INSIDE, OUT

* New muscular, sculptured exterior design is a modern evolution of Mustang heritage
* Powerful new interior design features world-class craftsmanship, upgraded materials and new technology
* Performance improvements – larger wheels, retuned suspension and increased horsepower – developed from engineering experience on the race track and from special editions including the Mustang Bullitt

LOS ANGELES, Nov. 18, 2008 – Muscle goes modern for 2010 as the Ford Mustang – America's favorite muscle car for 45 years straight – hits the streets with a new exterior design; new world-class interior featuring well-crafted materials and updated technology; and a V-8 with even more horsepower and an even throatier signature Mustang exhaust sound.

Combine those elements with the new Mustang's improved handling characteristics, more standard safety and technology features and its already-strong safety and quality performance and reputation, and it's easy to see how the muscle car known around the world delivers on the promise of fast, fun and affordable performance for a whole new era.

"More than 9 million customers have made Mustang one of the world's most beloved automotive and cultural icons," said Mark Fields, Ford's president of The Americas. "Making sure this modern legend lives up to their expectations has been a driving force for the team, which went to great lengths – gathering customer input everywhere from race tracks to Main Streets in cities throughout the U.S. – working to create the best Mustang ever."

For 2010, the team delivered. "The new Mustang marks new levels of both power and refinement," said Paul Randle, Mustang chief engineer. "We've designed and engineered this to be the next classic Mustang that everyone talks about for years and years."

In true Mustang tradition, there is a "steed for every need." At launch, customers can choose from a V-6 or V-8 with their choice of coupe, convertible or innovative glass roof, plus several new options and features delivering the opportunity for customers to personalize their cleaner, meaner-looking Mustangs.

"The best Mustangs have always been the ones that connect young America with the spirit of the times – and the 2010 does exactly that," said J Mays, Ford's group vice president of Design. "The new Mustang is close to the magnetic center of the original, fully loaded with the swagger you'd expect, but with modern refinement and attention to detail like you've never seen in a muscle car."

It starts with the more aggressive grille, punctuated with the first new Mustang emblem since the car's introduction in 1964. Both the V-6 and GT have brand-new sculptured front-end designs unique to each model. The headlamps and turn indicators, now integrated into one unit, are modern interpretations inspired by the 1970 Mustang. On the V-6, the fog lamps are located on the lower fascia, while on the GT, the fog lamps are again located in the upper grille – but are smaller than the outgoing model, similar to the original lamps of the 1967-68 models that inspired them.

"We understand Mustang's heritage and iconic status it has in the world and as a symbol of Americana," said Peter Horbury, executive director of Design, The Americas. "We wanted to create a face that is more muscular but unquestionably, unequivocally Mustang and carry that spirit through to the entire car."

The exterior sheet metal, except for the fast-back roofline, is all new for 2010. At the front, the new headlamps, lower fascias, fenders and grille are capped by a powerdome hood that adds to the muscular appearance while functionally allowing for enhanced air cooling of the engine.
Mustang's washer-fluid nozzles are tucked into the cowl, while the antenna has been moved to the rear, both of which create a cleaner appearance while also reducing wind noise.

Front rear fenders feature taut, sculptured wheel flares, like a tight skin stretched over the wheels. A classic spear character line on the doors leads to a modern indication of "hip" rear fenders. "It helps give the car aggressive, forward direction, like it's ready to jump," said Doug Gaffka, Mustang chief designer.

The rear end design features aggressively angled rear corners, a sculptured decklid and prominent rear badge. A rear-view camera incorporated into the spoiler is available on some models.

A notable new tail lamp design features three LED bulbs firing sequentially from the inside for turn indication. The sequential bulbs were a distinct Mustang feature in the '60s and comeback to the 2010 for the first time since then. Locating the reverse lamps vertically creates a modern version of the Ford classic three-lens taillamp.

The best of new, heritage
Cleverly combining modern technology with Mustang heritage is a signature of the 2010 model, in terms of both design and engineering.

"All of the Bullitt elements are the base foundation of the GT," said Randle, noting engine and chassis improvements. "We also applied some improvements gained from Mustang racing. We're learning constantly and always giving that to the customer on the base car."

The wheel-and-tire combinations are 1 inch bigger across the board, ranging from 17 to 19 inches, which helps improve handling and braking. The shocks have been retuned on all models as well.

"We adjusted the springs, stabilizer bars and shocks to better balance the ride, steering and handling for all models, which results in a more engaging driving experience," adds Mustang Vehicle Engineering manager Tom Barnes. "The 2010 Mustangs feel more controlled for steering and handling, yet retain a good ride balance."

The 2010 Mustang 4.6-liter V-8 benefits from innovations from the popular Bullitt model. Power has increased to 315 horsepower.

"It runs on regular gasoline, but if you put in premium it has adaptive calibration that will give you even better mid-range torque," Barnes said, adding that Easy Fuel™, Ford's innovative capless fuel system, is standard on all models.

"It's an upgrade to the most-robust, most-accessorized engine in the marketplace today," Randle added. "No one has the reliability, no one has the upgraded options. This is a fantastic engine, proven on the race track, the drag strip and on the highway."

AdvanceTrac™ Electronic Stability Control (ESC) is now standard and complements Mustang's all-speed traction control and anti-lock braking system (ABS).

"It gives a driver a little more confidence that in any type of condition the car will maintain what they want it to do," Barnes said. "The 2010 Mustang improves ride quality and maintains world-class steering and handling."

In addition to all of the design and driving dynamics improvements, the 2010 Ford Mustang is engineered to maintain its top government safety ratings. Standard safety equipment includes: dual stage front driver and passenger air bags; front seat-mounted side air bags; and, Ford's Personal Safety System.

Interior leads in design, materials, content and comfort
Like the exterior, the interior design is all new with world-class materials and execution.
The powerful new one-piece instrument panel design is crafted in seamless soft-touch TPO (Thermoplastic Olefin) skin fully encompassing available genuine aluminum-finish panels. Mustang's chromed-ringed gauges and dual-vane air register vents are precisely crafted and positioned.

"That's the difference between good enough and exceptional," said Gary Morales, Interior Design manager. "We wouldn't accept anything less than leadership design and world-class craftsmanship."

The instrument panel and console flow as one shape, another strong connection to Mustang heritage. The seats and arm rests have softer materials with high-quality stitching.

The new center stack design adds the latest version of Ford SYNC™, with new features 911 Assist and Vehicle Health Report. Drivers also can customize their ambient and instrument lighting through the My Color™ system, which features 125 color options.

"The centerstack is quite progressive. The electronic finish panel containing the audio and climate control buttons and knobs are integrated into the finish panel," said Kim Zielinski, Mustang Instrument Panel engineer, 2010 Mustang. "I believe the customers will really like the new look."

In addition to the improvements in technology and comfort, drivers will notice a quieter ride. "It's much more vault-like," Barnes said. "But we maintained the signature Mustang sound."

The upgraded instrument panel along with new sound deadeners added to select areas helped improve interior quietness, especially at high speeds or on rough roads. All the better to hear that famous Mustang roar.

With a completely redone exterior that echoes the classic Mustang designs of the past, an interior featuring world-class materials, numerous technology upgrades and an improved driving experience, the 2010 Mustang is poised to become the latest classic in the proud line of Ford's iconic American muscle car.

"The 2010 Mustang is drop-dead gorgeous," Randle said. "This car marks the best efforts of 45 years of passion and enthusiasm among the best designers, engineers and manufacturing experts in the business, and we can't wait for everyone to see it and start driving it."

The 2010 Mustang will be built at the Auto Alliance International Plant in Flat Rock, Mich.


Source: AutoBlog
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65mpg Ford Diesel .... not for you America!

This totally sucks ass

Tags: european, ford, econetic, diesel, sucks ass

65mpg Ford Diesel ....  not for you America!
"Ford has a vehicle that gets 65MPG and will not be released in the US. Why? Because they can not afford to! 'Ford's 2009 Fiesta ECOnetic goes on sale in November. But here's the catch: Despite the car's potential to transform Ford's image and help it compete with Toyota Motor (TM) and Honda Motor (HMC) in its home market, the company will sell the little fuel sipper only in Europe. "We know it's an awesome vehicle," says Ford America President Mark Fields. "But there are business reasons why we can't sell it in the U.S." The main one: The Fiesta ECOnetic runs on diesel.'"

Source: Clicky

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Corvette Z06 vs. Shelby GT500KR

Chevys Z06 takes on the GT500KR

Tags: domestic, ford, shelby, chevy, corvette, mustang, news, other

Corvette Z06 vs. Shelby GT500KR
We're looking at the 2008 Ford Shelby GT500KR and 2008 Chevrolet Corvette Z06, but we're imagining a '68 Shelby GT500KR staging next to a Corvette with one of the 427-cubic-inch V8s on the Connecting Highway in Queens, New York, probably sometime during the Nixon administration. We don't know how the cars are tuned or which driver has the better hole-shot technique, but we're calling our street race in favor of the Vette.



You see, there's no historical basis for a close Corvette-Mustang rivalry. A Corvette of any year is a little too fast and smart to be street racing ratty muscle cars. It's a real sports car, the kind of car that's still fun when you start going around corners.

But maybe it's a different story with this 2008 Ford Shelby GT500KR and 2008 Chevrolet Corvette Z06. Each of these rear-wheel-drive coupes has a V8 rated for more than 500 horsepower at the flywheel. And with the release of the limited-edition 2008 Ford Shelby GT500KR, Ford has moved in on Chevrolet's price territory. The GT500KR leaves the Ford factory as a $46,730 GT500 coupe and is shipped as a rolling chassis to Carroll Shelby's facility near the Las Vegas Motor Speedway in Nevada. By the time the KR cruises out of Shelby's shop, it's an $82,395 Mustang.

As such, the King-of-the-Road Mustang must now contend with this $76,920 2008 Chevrolet Corvette Z06. And though the Z06 is a few horsepower shy of the upcoming ZR1, it's not an easy mark. The GT500KR will have to play like a sports car just to keep up.

Continue reading by pressing the link below.
Source: InsideLine
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Saleen introduces new Racecraft brand

New brand from Saleen!

Tags: domestic, ford, saleen, brand, racecraft, news, other

Saleen introduces new Racecraft brand
We got wind of Saleen's new value-oriented brand last week, and they made it official with a press release introducing Racecraft and its first product, the 420S. The sub-$40,000 Mustang will have a focus on pure performance and offers up a supercharged V8 with 420 horsepower as well as an upgraded suspension, lightweight wheels, exterior graphics, and a few interior accents. If buyers want a little more, they can also shop the Saleen Speedlab catalog for items like the 475 horsepower upgrade kit that retails for just under a grand and doesn't void the 3-year/36,000 mile warranty. That's near GT500 territory, but for $5,000 less (not including markup on the Shelby), and about 300+ lbs lighter. The car will be officially unveiled at Mustang Week in Myrtle Beach, SC on July 26, and if you're in the area we hear they will be offering demo rides. The press release and a full list of 420S features can be found after the jump.

Source: AutoBlog

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Ford releases specs on new FPV Falcons

a possible threat to the G8?

Tags: domestic, ford, falcon, other

Ford releases specs on new FPV Falcons
Ford is getting ready for a battle in Australia for the hearts and minds of performance enthusiasts. Its new FPV Falcons will go head to head with what HSV offers from Holden, and today the Blue Oval from Down Under released officials specs for its souped up, gnarly-looking rear-wheel-drive sedans.

First we have the F6, which is powered by the familiar turbocharged 4.0L straight-six engine now producing 416 horsepower and 417 pound-feet of torque at just 1,950 rpm. That's a 54-horsepower increase over the prior straight six, and matches up surprisingly well with Ford's other engine offering, the 5.4L Boss V8 producing 422 horsepower and 406 pound-feet of torque at a loftier 4,750 rpm. The Boss motor can be had in the GT E, GT-P and GT sedans, as well as the Super Pursuit and Pursuit Ute. The exceptional straight-six meanwhile, is only offered in the F6 sedan and ute.

Let's compare what Ford revealed today with the offerings from Holden's HSV. Currently the Clubsport R8 is HSV's most high-performance sedan, and it's powered by an LS3 6.2L V8 producing 425 horsepower and 405 pound-feet of torque. Ford has pretty much matched HSV in the motor department then, and the new Falcon looks like it might weigh less to boot. But HSV dropped a bomb at the Melbourne Motor Show named the HSV W427, which is a version of the Clubsport R8 powered by GM's LS7 V8 producing 496 horses and 472 pound feet of torque. Hopefully Ford Australia has an answer for that up its sleeves, too.

Source: AutoBlog
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Kansas man forming Mustang Church of America

Tags: domestic, ford, mustang, church, other

Kansas man forming Mustang Church of America
Charles Ales is into Ford Mustangs. In fact, he owns several; his collection includes all three BOSS variants and four new Shelbys. Over years of collecting cars and hobnobbing with others who share his interests, he noticed that the real car people's enthusiasm for their rides borders on religious fervor. An idea popped into Charles' head last summer, and The Mustang Church of America and Museum was born. It's even got its own logo: the Christian fish symbol with the running pony inside.


Built next to the house in which he was born, the facility is set to open later this summer and will display Mr. Ales' collection of Mustangs. He also plans to host car shows, swap meets and two Mustang blessings a year. Charles and his adopted son Robert Brunch, both ordained ministers, will preside over Sunday services in the non-denominational church. "I'll preach goodness and helping my fellow humankind. I'll preach what we're supposed to do - make this a better world than we found it," he told the local Pittsburg, KS Morning Sun newspaper.

The mural behind his pulpit will show Jesus at the wheel of a '66 Mustang. Bet you don't have one of those at your church.

Source: AutoBlog

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NBC greenlights Knight Rider weekly series

........*sigh*

Tags: domestic, show, tv, series, shelby, ford, other

NBC greenlights Knight Rider weekly series
The Knight Rider TV movie was not good. The updated, Shelby Mustang-based KITT looked undeniably cool (when not in Ugly... er... Attack Mode, at least), but the acting was wooden and the writing was a horror show. Still, the ending completely set up a potential ongoing story. Today comes word that the ratings were apparently good enough for the suits to give a thumbs-up for a new weekly series starting this Fall. Early reports suggest a Friday night timeslot is in the works, but that's subject to change; all will be known on Wednesday when NBC presents its early upfronts.


We'll assume that at the very least, stars Justin Breuning (Mike Traceur) and Deanna Russo (Mike Traceur's Girlfriend) will return to fill our flatscreens with emotionless line reading. And since voicing KITT should be a relatively easy payday for Val Kilmer, we'd expect him to reprise his role, as well. As for the Hoff, who walked on for a brief cameo at the end of the pilot, who knows? The big winner here is Ford, which now gets an hour-long weekly showcase for the Shelby GT500KR KITT. Based on the stupendously lousy pilot, however, we're going to put on our prognostication hats and set the over/under for this Knight Rider reboot at 10 episodes. Unless NBC ups the quality in a big, big way, the under is a lock.

Source: AutoBlog
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Ford to continue Shelby GT500KR for 2009

They know they have a hit, why stop?

Tags: domestic, ford, shelby, mustang, gt500

Ford to continue Shelby GT500KR for 2009
Pay no attention to the "2008" on that snake badge. Even though the 540-horsepower Shelby GT500KR was built to celebrate the 40th anniversary of a certain former chicken-farmer's automotive exploits, it seems that neither Ford nor 'ol Shel want the party to end. As a result, Ford and Shelby will produce an additional 746 units of the GT500KR in model year 2009. 541 of those will go to U.S. customers, making for a U.S.-market total of 1,571 cars, which conveniently matches the production run of the original KR. (Never mind those additional foreign-market cars -- they just mess with that warm, fuzzy, marketing-oriented math.) For your enjoyment, check out our gallery of the Vista Blue Shelby GT500KR currently on the New York Auto Show floor.

Source Autoblog

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FQuick Blog Staff