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What to Test in a Test Drive

(Posted on Jun 1, 2015 at 01:29PM )
What to Test in a Test Drive
Did you take your car out for a test drive before you bought it?
How long did you take it out for?
What did you check for when you took it out?

The test drive can be the deciding factor when it comes time to buy a new vehicle. It’s a decision you’ll live with for, presumably, a long time, so you’d best be sure you’re making the right one!
Unfortunately, some people base their purchase on a 10-minute zip around the dealership’s neighbourhood. Seems a little quick for such a major purchase, doesn’t it?
At Ford Canada, we want you to be our worst critic. We want you to be so sure that the Ford you drive off the lot is your perfect fit. That’s why we’ve prepared a test drive checklist so you’ll know exactly what to look for when you take one of our vehicles out on the road.
Before you hit the road for your test drive, take a moment to have a good look at the following things you wouldn’t notice while taking a ride.
Give it a once over. Walk around the vehicle, and look at it long and hard from several angles. How does it look from the back? Are all the panels and handles perfectly aligned?
Open and close. Perform some simple “does it feel right” checks. Open and close the trunk and the doors. Do they feel heavy or awkward? Sit in the front and back seats. Will the people you chauffeur around be able to get in and out with ease?
Touch. When it comes to the interior, how does it look and feel? Wriggle around in the seats. Could you put up with them for a long drive? How about the steering wheel? Is the stitching perfect? Can you reach everything – shifters, stereo and heat controls – easily enough that you don’t need to take your eyes off the road?
Just in case space. This might be a no-brainer, but does your potential purchase have the space you need for all your life’s situations? Can you fit your kid’s hockey equipment in the back? How about your camping gear? Is there room for the family dog?
Before the rubber meets the road, there are some things you should keep in mind.
Drive exactly what you want. If the specific model/trim package you are interested in is available, drive it. Differences in transmission, suspension and tire packages (among other things) can have a big impact on your overall impression.
Choose your own adventure. If you’re familiar with the neighbourhood, drive your own route. A test drive down a regularly travelled path is always preferable.
Act like an auto journalist. There are a number of specific things you should pay attention to when it comes to the actual ride:
Ride quality: noise, vibrations, smoothness
Power: passing speed, sudden acceleration
Transmission: smooth shifter and clutch, automatic upshifts and downshifts
Handling: long and short turns, swerves
Braking: soft and hard braking conditions, does it stop in a straight and controlled manner?
Parking: check for blind spots, how hard it is to identify the corners when parking?
Buying a new car is a huge decision and one that shouldn’t be rushed. Take your time, don’t feel pressure from sales staff to make an instant decision, and stick to your guns if you’re not completely satisfied.
Special thanks to MSN autos for providing the background for these tips. They’ve even created a handy checklist for you to print out and bring with you on your drive!
Good luck!
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(Posted on Jun 1, 2015 at 01:03PM )
New design. New interface. New features. SYNC 390 is not only new, it is easy-to-use and innovative. Just say the word and see how SYNC 3 delivers next-level connectivity. *Available on select 2016 Models. Optional Feature* 
Available Applink™ enabled apps vary by market.

New hardware meets new software.
The easy-to-read colour screen houses a sleek, clean interface that was designed around you - with phone, audio and available navigation functions all featured on the home screen.
High-speed performance
The SYNC® 3 system reacts quickly to your commands and the capacitive touch screen has impressive responsiveness similar to your smartphone like swipe, and pinch-to-zoom functionality with optional navigation system.
Enhanced voice recognition.
SYNC 3 is designed to respond to the way you actually talk with simple, real-world voice commands with hands-free calling. Controlling your phone and more is as easy as saying “Call Mom.”
Simple music access.
Find your favourite music fast with intelligent voice commands. If you are listening to the radio and want to hear music from your USB-connected phone instead, just say “Play” and the artist or song name, and SYNC 3 can automatically switch to your music selection.
Easy destination entry.
With simple destination entry, it's a breeze for SYNC 3 with optional navigation to locate that hard-to-find Thai restaurant, the nearest ATM, or a highly-rated coffee shop. Plus, responsive, adaptive search results are based upon your preferences.
Siri® seamless integration.
SYNC 3 brings the power of Siri® Eyes Free91 and your iPhone®91 into your vehicle. Make or receive a call, reserve a table, audibly send a “see you there” text and more.
Automatic updates over Wi-Fi®91
Keeping SYNC 3 up to date with the latest software is convenient -- system updates can be downloaded over Wi-Fi as they become available.90

SYNC® with Voice-
Activated Navigation
with MyFord®
with MyFord Touch®
Find out what's available in your favorite Ford vehicle.

Voice-control your phone 
Just say a name to make a call.
Automatic phone book download
Download names/numbers programmed in your compatible phone.4
Uninterrupted connections
Instantly transfers your call to SYNC the moment you start your car.4
Phone book photo transfer
Downloaded phone book photos are displayed when making a call.4
Advanced Calling Features
Enjoy many of your phone’s features like caller ID and call waiting.
Ringtone Support
Hear your ringtone from your supported phone when a call comes in.

Voice-activated music search
Control what music you listen to by using simple voice commands.4
Voice-activated radio tuning
Use simple voice commands to find the station or program you want.
Bluetooth® audio streaming
Listen wirelessly to a variety of audio from your phone.
Voice-activated SiriusXM Satellite Radio13
Access commercial-free entertainment with voice commands.
(with replay)
MP3 player charging
Plug in your device to listen and charge simultaneously.
Integrated hard drive
The available hard drive can store up to 2,400 songs. Audiobooks
Enjoy your favorite audiobooks on the road.
Audio/video input jacks 
Plug in and play video games, camcorders and video iPod.®
(N/A on Fiesta, Explorer, or Transit Connect)
Grace Note Media Management
Search a database of artists, album art and tracks.
911 Assist
The system can assist occupants to call 911.
(N/A on Super Duty 650 or 750)

SYNC® AppLink™
Use your voice to control some of your favorite mobile apps while driving.
(N/A on Super Duty 650 or 750)

Choose your route
Choose from shortest, fasted or Eco-Route suggestions.
(Opt SD card)
Available voice-activated navigation
Enjoy audible turn-by-turn navigation.
Available SD Card Navigation
Get maps with 3-D imagery.

Audible text messages6
SYNC® can read your incoming texts from your connected phone.
(N/A on Super Duty 650 or 750)
Preset text message responses6
Respond with a variety of preset outgoing text messages.
(N/A on Super Duty 650 or 750)
Customized text messages6
Customize the preset outgoing text messages.

Internet Connectivity
Create a Wi-Fi® hotspot using SYNC® with MyFord Touch® and your phone.

Using RCA input jacks
Watch a video on your touch screen when your vehicle is in park.
(N/A on Fiesta, Explorer or Transit Connect)
DVD capability
When in park, watch your favorite DVD on the color touch screen.

Voice/touch screen climate control
Just use your voice or touch screen to adjust the climate.

4.2-inch cluster screen
Customize your screen to see music, phone, navigation and climate.
(Only on Super Duty 250-550, Fiesta, Transit Connect, Focus, F-150 and Escape)
Dual 4.2-inch cluster screens
Personalize your screens to view music, phone, navigation and climate.
(Only on Hybrid and EV’s-dual Smartgauge cluster)
(Hybrid and EV’s dual Smartgauge cluster)
Five-way steering wheel-mounted controls
Control your cluster screen, phone & more while keeping your hands on the wheel.

View instantaneous mpg vs. average mpg 
Compare your average mpg to your instant mpg.
View average mpg history over 5, 10, 30 minutes
See your recent mpg history and see how efficiently you’re driving.

Color coded touch screen
Easily control/customize many vehicle functions with a vivid touch screen.
Customizable home screen and gauges
Create, customize and adjust the home screen for your needs
Ambient lighting
Customize your interior to suit your mood.
(N/A Super Duty 250-550)
(optional feature on C-MAX, Focus, Fiesta,Escape, but N/A Touch Screen Control. Hard button functionality)

USB port
Plug in just about any device and listen to it over your sound system.
SD card slot
Insert an SD card to access your music, photos and more.
RCA jacks
Plug your device in, watch videos when the vehicle is parked.
(N/A on Fiesta, Explorer or Transit Connect)
Auxiliary jack
Plug in your portable music player for personalized tunes in your vehicle.

Models with SYNC options
2015 F-150
2015 FOCUS
2015 EDGE
2015 C-MAX
2015 FLEX
2015 F-150
2015 FOCUS
2015 C-MAX
2015 FLEX
2015 EDGE


Ford’s GoDrive Car-Sharing Service Debuts In London

(Posted on Jun 1, 2015 at 12:34PM )
Ford’s GoDrive Car-Sharing Service Debuts In London
GoDrive is the first of 25 Ford smart mobility experiments to be launched publicly.

When Ford Motor Company announced its Smart Mobility Plan at CES this past year, company executives emphasized that its 25 experiments were just that. Not all of them were intended to reach commercial viability. “Each experiment is different and luckily [Ford CEO] Mark [Fields] is giving us the ability to experiment and fail fast,” Erica Klampfl, Ford’s global future mobility manager, said at a press event in April.
But one of those experiments, City Driving On-Demand, has birthed a real social mobility service. Called GoDrive, it’s an on-demand, app-based car-sharing service. Ford launched it in London on Tuesday with a fleet of 50 vehicles that can be booked on demand, picked up, and then dropped off at one of a number of hubs across central London. Booking a car through the app also effectively books a parking space at the chosen drop-off location.
“One of the things that we really wanted to ensure with our service was flexibility of use,” Alicia Agius, product innovation manager of Ford Europe, told BuzzFeed News. “If you use our services it’s fully on demand. You bring the car back when you’re ready and you don’t say exactly when you’re going to return it.”
GoDrive, like many of the company’s other experiments, is Ford’s answer to industry disruptors like ride-hail giants Uber and Lyft — which are both gunning to replace personal car ownership.
“I think it’s helping us understand the model and what our place is in this model going forward and in the future,” Agius said. “We’re not saying that we want to be a global car-sharing operator. But we do see it as a growing market and [feel] there’s a place for it going forward. We also view it as a huge opportunity in terms of accessing new customers — both non-car and non-Ford-owning customers — which is another huge benefit to operating in the space.”
One key goal of GoDrive is to spur adoption of Ford’s electric vehicles, yet the program’s fleet includes gas-powered cars as well. Agius said there’s good reason for that. “We obviously thought early on about having a 100% electric fleet,” she said. “As this is an experiment and it’s really about learning, by having the choice between electric and petrol it helps us understand why people are choosing electric cars and what sorts of people choose electric. We’re already gaining lots of information about that.”

As part of this effort, consumers who use the GoDrive service are asked to complete a survey asking which vehicle they chose and why. While it’s too early to draw any definitive conclusions, Agius said Ford has already learned a bit more about why people aren’t choosing electric cars. “Sometimes it’s lack of knowledge, misunderstanding, or even a fear that it’s going to be very different to drive,” she said. “There’s also the other type of customer that couldn’t wait to get into the electric car and that was one of the main reasons for wanting to join.”
The service does require membership in order to validate each driver’s license — but it comes at no additional cost. Drivers only have to pay for each minute they use the car at a rate of 17 pence per minute — about 10 euros per hour.
Though Ford has experimented with other car-sharing and swapping services in markets like Germany, Michigan, and India, GoDrive was the only one mature enough to launch publicly. Agius said London was an obvious first choice of market.
“From an experimental perspective London is a perfect storm in terms of different variables affecting a car-sharing program,” she said. “There’s extremely constrained parking in central London, congestion and air quality concerns, and also the multiple boroughs in central London that make it quite a difficult city to operate in. Because it’s an experiment it is about learning and we wanted to make sure we were operating in a geography that would maximize learning.
“And London is obviously quite densely populated — there is huge untapped potential in London for a really designed car-sharing model that suits London and Londoners to flourish on.”

The Future Of Tough Takes On The World

(Posted on Apr 9, 2015 at 07:54AM )
The Future Of Tough Takes On The World
by Ammar Khan
Social Media Manager / Ford Blog Editor
When it comes to the all-new 2015 F-150, you’ve already seen it perform unbelievably well in lab tests, and real world tests. You’d think that’d be enough, but come on; it’s the F-150 – we wanted to show you what this truck can really do. So where do you take the Future of Tough to really push the bar? To a world of perpetual freezing temperatures and smothered darkness. We took the 2015 F-150 to the Canadian Arctic Circle and put a search and rescue volunteer and a professional dogsled trainer behind the wheel.
When Search and Rescue volunteer Lorne Browne travels for supplies from Inuvik to Whitehorse a couple times per year, he’s travelling on some of the roughest roads in Canada, often in 24-hour darkness and below freezing temperatures. He needs to rely on the fact that his vehicle is going to get him there safe and sound. Without the help of city streetlights along the rural roads, darkness heightens the risk. But the 2015 F-150’s available class-exclusive quad beam LED headlamps illuminate the road ahead. Along with the new box lighting system, the new tailgate step and the fact that the truck also doubles as a mobile command centre able to power computers, smartphones and GPS systems, the world of dark doesn’t stand a chance. - See more at:

3 ways the new Shelby GT350R Mustang makes driving a thrill

(Posted on Apr 9, 2015 at 07:47AM )
3 ways the new Shelby GT350R Mustang makes driving a thrill
by Ammar Khan
Social Media Manager / Ford Blog Editor

Have you ever had a chance to drive a car designed entirely for the racetrack? The thrill that rushes through your veins when pressing the pedal; the excitement of taking the first turn… Now imagine the joy of lawfully driving it on the streets. With the unveiling of the new Shelby GT350R Mustang at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, it’s now a reality that will make every performance car lover smile.
Combining exciting improvements with driving innovations, the new Shelby GT350R Mustang is so much more that just another muscle car; it’s the most race-ready road-legal Mustang ever; and, it’ll change the way you feel about driving. Forever. Here is why:
The new Shelby GT350R Mustang 
1. It’s ready for unprecedented speed: The Shelby GT350R Mustang has been optimized to get you faster than ever with a combination of changes to aerodynamics and suspension tuning. From the hood vent for heat extraction and lift reduction, to an all-new high-efficiency carbon fibre rear wing and an aggressive diffuser, Ford engineers managed to increase the car’s downforce capability, forcing the car down onto the ground to get you maximum grip at high speed.
2. It’s all about performance: Ford engineers delivered against aggressive targets for weight reduction on the Shelby GT350R Mustang. Anything that wasn’t going to help increase speed was removed to reduce weight. This includes the air conditioning, the stereo system and the rear seats. With these improvements, the new model is more than 130 pounds lighter than the Shelby GT350 Track Pack model. Moreover, Ford is the first major automaker to introduce lightweight carbon fibre wheels, shaving critical unsprung weight to make it easier for the suspension to plant the wheels on the asphalt and reduce rolling inertia.
3. It’s more powerful than ever: The new 5.2-litre dual-overhead-cam V8 engine is the first-ever production V8 from Ford with a flat-plane crankshaft – an architecture typically found only in racing applications or exotic European sports cars. It is the most powerful naturally aspirated production Ford engine ever, with more than 500 horsepower and more than 400 lb.-ft. of torque. Also, an air-to-oil engine oil cooler typically found only on racecars maintains engine temperatures under the most severe conditions.

The new Shelby GT350R Mustang 
While waiting for this spirited Mustang to be available (which should be by the end of this year or the beginning of 2016), take a look at the long-awaited Focus RS or at the stunning Ford GT and tell us which one is your favourite Ford performance car by leaving us a comment below, on Facebook, or tweeting us @FordCanada.

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6 reasons the Ford GT supercar is driving the future!

(Posted on Mar 26, 2015 at 08:02AM )
6 reasons the Ford GT supercar is driving the future
 by Ammar Khan
Social Media Manager / Ford Blog Editor

When you head to an auto show, you anticipate seeing vehicles that are made for the road ahead. For the lucky crowd at the 2015 Canadian International AutoShow in Toronto, the future was right before their eyes when the Ford GT supercar made its first Canadian appearance.
Bringing new meaning to the term showstopper, our chins hit the floor when the curtain dropped. Although we could spend lots of time showering the stunning GT with praise, we’ve zeroed in on the six reasons why the GT is the supercar of the future:
It’s faaaast. And we don’t just mean because of the engine. With only one year of development, the GT is poised for completion next year. Plus, Ford expects the first production prototype to arrive in the spring. That’s superhero speed in the car production world!
Active suspension. Using an in-cabin button any caped crusader would appreciate, the GT can actually lower itself for better aerodynamics and increased stability, as well as lift its front end to accommodate ramps and speedbumps.
It’s a lightweight heavyweight. With carbon fibre body structure and aluminum subframes, the GT has one of the best power to weight ratio of any car in the market.
It controls the elements. Because it wouldn’t be a real supercar without a superpower, the Ford GT’s got wings. The flying buttresses that link the roof to the fender are curved in ways to literally control the air, creating downforce, redirecting air to the rear spoiler, and acting as intake tubes for cooling the engine.
Did we mention it’s FAST?! The GT introduces the first-ever Ford Ecoboost twin-turbocharged, direct-injected 3.5-litre V6 engine that can produce more than 600 horsepower!
It can predict the future. Since the GT already knows what’s coming, it’s equipped with a backup camera. Although it won’t make parking as fun as driving, it’ll ensure you do it perfectly every time.
And just in case you needed something else to be impressed by, the Ford GT has a Canadian twist. Ford surprised auto show patrons by announcing that the stunning new GT Supercar will be built in partnership with Multimatic, a global engineering and manufacturing company headquartered in Markham, Ont.
Love fast cars? Check out the Focus RS, another performance monster from Ford.