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Entries in Ford Motor Company (17)

Thursday
Dec272012

Car Sales Seen Accelerating in 2013

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Car sales are revving up. After a surge of 14 percent this year compared to 2011, Edmunds.com forecasts another gain for next year.

Total car sales are likely to top 15 million. As with the improving housing market, accelerating car sales are being powered by low interest rates for consumer loans.

Ford Motor Co. said on Thursday it will expand manufacturing plants in its home state of Michigan. The company plans to spend nearly $800 million and create thousands of jobs by 2015. A Ford vice president says the investments will support its aggressive growth plans.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Dec272012

Ford to Invest $773M in Michigan Plants, Add 2,350 Jobs

KAREN BLEIER/AFP/Getty Images(DEARBORN, Mich.) -- Ford Motor Company announced on Thursday it's spending more than $773 million to enhance and expand six facilities in Michigan that will create 2,350 new hourly jobs.

In addition to the new positions, the investment will allow the Dearborn, Mich.-based automaker to retain 3,240 hourly jobs in the state.

“Even as we wrap up an incredibly busy year of capacity expansions and product launches, we are continuing to look to the future,” Ford vice president of North America Manufacturing, Jim Tetreault, said in a statement Thursday.  “These investments, many of which are already under way, will ensure our southeast Michigan manufacturing facilities can support our aggressive growth plans.”

The facilities include the Dearborn Stamping Plant ($305 million), Flat Rock Assembly ($161 million), Van Dyke Transmission ($87.7 million), Sterling Axle Plant ($86 million), Livonia Transmission ($74.7 million) and Michigan Assembly Plant ($59.4 million).

Ford says the investments are part of a commitment to spend $6.2 billion in U.S. plants by 2015 and add 12,000 hourly jobs across the country.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Jul262012

Ford Recalls Nearly 500K Escape SUVs for Sticking Pedals

KAREN BLEIER/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The Ford Motor Company is recalling nearly half a million Escape model compact SUVs amid concerns over a potentially deadly problem with sticking accelerator pedals.

The new recall, which includes 2001 to 2004 models that have 3-liter, V-6 engines with cruise control, was ordered after safety inspectors discovered the accelerator's speed control cables could become stuck on an engine cover when the pedal is almost fully depressed, according to a recall notice by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration.

The recall comes after ABC News' Phoenix affiliate, KNXV, launched an investigation into a Ford Escape crash that claimed the life of 17-year-old Saige Bloom. The Arizona teen lost control of her vehicle and crashed on a local road in January.

Moments before that crash, Bloom's mother, who was driving in another car behind her daughter, made frantic calls to 911 saying, "She cannot stop. We're coming to a red light and I don't know what to do for her," KNXV reported.

The younger Bloom plowed into another car and rolled three times. She later died of her injuries.

According to KNXV, an inspector hired by the Bloom family later discovered the vehicle's speed control cable had broken and become lodged under the engine cover, meaning the throttle was stuck at near full speed.

Ford said that most dealerships will not have the parts to permanently fix the problem just yet, according to a customer information sheet provided by Ford, but said customers should go to their local dealership for an "interim repair, which will disable the speed control system on your vehicle to eliminate the possibility of a stuck throttle…"

"This temporary repair will allow you to continue driving your vehicle until parts for the permanent repair are available," the information sheet says.

Representatives at Ford's corporate headquarters did not immediately respond to requests for comment for this report.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Monday
Apr162012

Reports: Ford to Overhaul Iconic Mustang

Sam VarnHagen/Ford Motor Co.(NEW YORK) -- Big changes are said to be in the works for the iconic Ford Mustang.

The classic American brand will soon get a “radical makeover” both inside and out, according to the Wall Street Journal. A redesigned Mustang “would retain the shark-nosed grille and round headlights, but would look more like the new Ford Fusion,” than the existing model, the Journal reports, citing sources familiar with the company’s plans.

It will also become lighter and smaller, and with the redesigned exterior will come more fuel efficient engines -- ones that can meet the government's upgraded standards.

"Ford is seeking to shave at least 200-300 pounds from the current car’s 3,600-pound curb weight," Popular Hot Rodding magazine says. "This will come partially with downsizing, but mostly from use of lighter materials in the body structure and chassis components. Look for more aluminum and use of high-strength steels."

Mustang's new look, Ford hopes, may help attract a new generation of young American buyers.

The smaller and sleeker Mustang will be aggressively marketed and sold in Europe and other global markets, according to reports.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Apr032012

Strong Sales for Detroit's Big Three Automakers

Hemera/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Detroit's big three carmakers had a strong month of sales in March.

The big story is small cars:  High gas prices may be helping boost overall sales with more consumers trading in their old gas guzzlers for more fuel efficient cars. General Motors says last month was the first time it sold more than 100,000 cars and crossovers that get at least 30 miles per gallon.

Chrysler had a banner month with a 34 percent increase in sales compared to the year before. Ford and GM also reported gains.

More low interest car loans are being made to consumers with only average credit ratings.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Oct252011

Japanese Cars Top 'Consumer Reports' 2011 Rankings

STAN HONDA/AFP/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Japanese brands again dominated Consumer Reports' reliability survey, while Ford Motor Co. sank in the magazine's 2011 ratings, thanks to three new models that had problems.

The most reliable cars came from Scion, Lexus, Acura, Mazda, Honda, and Toyota, the non-profit group said in a statement today.  Of the 91 Japanese models Consumer Reports ranked, 87 were rated average or better in predicted reliability; 24 Japanese models earned the highest rating.

Ford’s fall from the 10th to the 20th spot this year stemmed from its new Ford Explorer, Fiesta, and Focus, of which had below-average reliability in their first year. That was the biggest slip for any carmaker this year.

“Ford’s drop can also be attributed to problems with new technologies: the new MyFord Touch infotainment system and the new automated-manual transmission used in the Fiesta and Focus. On the bright side, the Ford Fusion Hybrid sedan remained outstanding, and other Fusion versions were above average,” Consumers said in a statement.

The ranking is based on responses on 1.3 million vehicles owned or leased by subscribers to Consumer Reports or users of ConsumerReports.org.

Full reliability history charts and predicted-reliability ratings on hundreds of 2012 models can be found online at ConsumerReports.org’s reliability section and in the December issue of the magazine.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Monday
Aug222011

Obama Calls Warren Buffett, Ford's Alan Mulally to Talk About Economy

Pete Souza/The White House(WASHINGTON) -- Preparing for a new jobs program to be unveiled after Labor Day, President Obama called the “Oracle of Omaha,” a.k.a. Warren Buffett, on Monday to talk about the recent gyrations of the stock market, the overall outlook for the economy, and possible measures to spur the economy. But that’s not all, according to White House principal deputy press secretary Josh Earnest.

The president also called the head of the Ford Motor Company, Alan Mulally. The president wanted to know if the supply chain problems caused by the Japanese tsunami have moderated. He also asked the Ford chief about how to extend exports.

Undoubtedly, the president told Mulally that he’s coming to Detroit to spend Labor Day (Sept. 5) with workers. The White House formally announced the trip Monday.

The president also spent some time with one of his economic advisers, Brian Deese, working on that new jobs program. Still no date for the big speech after Labor Day.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Aug022011

Ford Recalls 1.2 Million Trucks

PRNewsFoto(TRAVERSE CITY, Mich.) -- The salt and other substances used by road crews to de-ice streets and highways is doing a number on some components of Ford trucks. The company says the chemical can corrode the straps that support the gas tanks of various Ford 150 model and 250 model pickups trucks built from 1995 through 2004.

The corrosion can weaken the straps to the point the tank drags beneath the vehicle or falls off entirely. As a result, Ford announced Monday that it was recalling 1.2 million of these vehicles. 

The problem is relatively rare: out of the millions of trucks the automaker sells, there have only been a reported 243 incidents of fuel tanks either dropping below the truck and/or getting dragged on the road, with one injury reported.

The affected trucks are from the following states which, not coincidentally, are more inclined to use rock salt during the winter: Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and the District of Columbia.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Apr262011

Ford Q1 Earnings Best Since 1998

Bruno Vincent/Getty Images(DEARBORN, Mich.) -- Ford Motor Co. earned $2.6 billion in the first quarter of 2011 -- $466 million more than the same period the year before, and the best the company’s done in the first quarter since 1998.

“Our team delivered a great quarter, with solid growth and improvements in all regions,” said Alan Mulally, Ford president and CEO in a press release issued Tuesday.

The company totaled $33.1 billion in revenue in the first quarter, up $5 billion from the first quarter of 2010.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Apr142011

Ford Recalls 1.2 Million F-150 Pickups

KAREN BLEIER/AFP/Getty Images(DEARBORN, Mich.) -- Ford Motor Co. said Thursday it will recall 1.2 million F-150 pickup trucks made between 2004 and 2006 because of an airbag wiring defect.

The airbags can pop out unexpectedly without warning, mainly when drivers start the car.  Numerous injuries have been reported because of the defect, including broken teeth and noses.

In February, Ford recalled about 10 percent -- or nearly 150,000 -- of the F-150 pickup trucks manufactured in 2005 and 2006, claiming they were the only ones with the defect.

But the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration argued otherwise, and pushed Ford to recall thousands more trucks which the government says caused at least 98 reported injuries.

The problem, officials say, is a wire bundle under the steering wheel column that rubs against a sharp edge.  It can be fixed by simply wrapping a wire bundle with tape to protect it. 

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio