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Is Ford Motor Company Falling a Step Behind Rival General Motors?

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Can we get back to where we are now in terms of product and off the discussion of the past?

From a product standpoint, what is each company doing right and wrong in everyones opinion?

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Ford is right to push forward with Aluminum, but they need to see how GM has used high strength steel to reduce weight. The aluminum bed and panels only got Ford to where GM already was with using high strength steel.

Ignoring FCA American Divisions, GM and FORD both have plenty of potential in their trucks, GM is ahead with cars and SUVs is my personal opinion. EV auto's also and I have to think this is due to Ford Debt in comparison to GM.

GM needs to keep pushing new tech and moving towards Hybrid everything, EV's at least one in each of the 5 product lines.

Ford needs to update their cars, get current with a better EV and seriously change Lincoln.

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Drew,

I don’t care if they lost $23B like GM did in the 90’s. Heck, GM was limping along too, and lost $8.6B the previous year.  Ford still had the insight to borrow more than they needed to weather the coming storm.  And GM did not.  Just how it is.

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27 minutes ago, A Horse With No Name said:

Can we get back to where we are now in terms of product and off the discussion of the past?

From a product standpoint, what is each company doing right and wrong in everyones opinion?

I think Lincoln is still seriously behind.  The Continental is a step in the right direction, but the MKZ isn't enough of an update to keep people happy and gain lots of conquest sales.  Furthermore, as much as the bunch of us who frequent automotive websites may like the 3.0TT it might be a bit too much for buyers of this sort of car. As mundane as it is, the MKZ really does need a basic (in today's terms), naturally aspirated V6 to properly challenge the ES. Lincoln is not going to peel those buyers out of their Lexii if they don't offer them something they want.

The MKX and MKC are good attempts and reflect that in their sales.  The new Navigator can't get here fast enough. 

On cars, Ford is falling behind fast.  The Focus feels very tired at this point, only the Sentra comes to mind as tireder.  The updates to the Fusion are nice, but few non-car people will even notice them.  I do think the Fiesta is among the best in its class.  Taurus and C-Max... you're still here?

 Explorer is fantastic, it's the king of the hill and deserves to be, the only reason someone should consider a Grand Cherokee or Durango over an Explorer is if they need towing capacity or off road capability beyond what the Explorer can do... if you're just doing soccer mom/dad stuff, get the Explorer.  The Edge is equally as good, but underappreciated by the press, can be a little pricey, but I'd still pick it over a Murano. The release of the new CR-V and Equinox will make the newly refreshed Escape feel very old very fast. 

F-150, not much needs to be said. It's the King for a reason. I drove the '17 Superduty and it deserves every award it has and will win. Ranger is still too far away as is Bronco. Transit and Transit Connect, not my cup of tea, but the market has spoken. 

 

6 minutes ago, Wings4Life said:

 

 

Drew,

 

I don’t care if they lost $23B like GM did in the 90’s. Heck, GM was limping along too, and lost $8.6B the previous year.  Ford still had the insight to borrow more than they needed to weather the coming storm.  And GM did not.  Just how it is.

 

Ford had the insight to weather their own storm. People were already talking about Ford being forced to merge or go through bankruptcy. There was no insight into a future storm in 2006, certainly not at the level of what happened. 

 GM had their issues, but it wasn't with building cars at that point, it was GMAC.  No one was talking about a GM bankruptcy in 2006. Warning shots to the economy didn't start for another 7 - 8 months.

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Like always Wings chooses to pick and choose his knowledge even when history and documentation prove him wrong.. or in more appropriate terms.. to be a an idiot.

Ford HAD to go to to the banks early on because they were in every way getting ready to do exactly what GM did later. A DOE loan also helped Ford get thru the calamity that came.. MOFOs were so broke they had to sell their name...

GM, with Rick Wagoner and Co, ironically decided to actually weather the storm, and were actually seen as possibly pulling thru said storm until the recession hit.. and hit hard in 2008.. and everything when busto.. After that.. the BK was inevitable.. altho I personally cried for it as far back as 2006 to rid themselves of the UAW BULLSHIT that they were into..

 

But like Horsie said.. why the hell are we arguing almost decade old shit.. when financials show that currently.. Mary vs Mark.. the woman, as I often like.. is ON TOP. Ford's over reliance on Fleet (a few months in the almost 40% range ) is effing its financials up. It will in turn eventually eff up buyer's resale as well. GM decided to kill many fleet sales and push retail.. resulting in the highest ATPS in the industry, and the often criticized Cadillac. . led by the Escalade, CTS and new CT6, being the #1 or #2 highest ATP winner in the land

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Compared to GM:

GM has a luxury division that is mentioned in all seriousness with the likes of the best from Germany. There is no shame in picking a CTS-V over an M5, and buyers of Escalades won't lay awake at night wondering if they should have gone with a GLS instead.  Not the biggest fan of Cadillac's President, but we've also seen little of his handiwork yet.  The XT5 is capable, but I think the MKX does more things better (there are pluses and minuses to both on the interior).  Cadillac really needs more engine choice in the XT5. I haven't driven the Continental yet to compare, but CT6 is bad-ass. It's a big car but you can make it dance like a ballerina.  The Continental is most often mentioned with... the Koreans?  I think that is unfair to the Continental and gives the Koreans too much credit... but it still isn't being compared to an E-Class or S-Class at this point.

On trucks - I admit that I favor the GM full-sizers (Sierra in particular) over the F-150 in looks, but there are a few areas on the GMs I don't like. The configuration options put you into baffling choices that you shouldn't have to make.... why can't I have Z71 AND the enhanced towing package??.  There are also a few tech things missing that I would want to see on the GMs fullsizers. Where is Android Auto? Where is lane keep assist (not just alert)?  The mid-size trucks are great for a segment that was starved of new product for years, however they really need to improve on the interiors here. Toyota is not standing still.  GM, you're still building the old Express?  You got caught with your pants down on the City Express's segment, I hope you have something lined up to replace it.  The irony is they probably can't bring over the Opel Combo Kastenwagen because it is a sister vehicle to the Fiat/Ram Promaster City and FCA won't allow it.

On SUVs - The Trax and Encore are doing well and the updates are nice, but somehow I feel like there should have been more to it.  I am soooooo glad that the current 'Nox and Terrain are finally being replaced. It's about damn time.... I always avoided those two at the rental counter.  As far as packaging, they were fine, but the interiors were so out of date.  Hated the refreshed 'Nox face and the newest one fixes that.   The Lambdas are finally being replaced and we'll see more of that soon.  I drove an Acadia Denali last week and I was just "meh". For that amount of money a Grand Cherokee or Explorer would be more satisfying. Don't get me wrong, it seems to be done well... but it's not something I would steer someone towards unless they were particularly attracted to the looks. I won't bother on the other Lambdas since they're on their way out, good while they lasted.  The Suburban and Yukon are kings of their segment for good reason, but a little interior and exterior nip/tuck is probably in order.

On cars - For the first time since ... well all of my lifetime... Chevrolet has a top-shelf lineup from top to bottom. SS, Impala, Camaro, Malibu, Cruze, Volt, Bolt, Sonic, Spark.... I can recommend any of those to someone shopping in the respective classes without hesitation. The new Cruze should take off. The Lacrosse is a good iterative improvement over the prior car, but won't woo that many new Buick buyers, needs another upper engine option.  Regal is tired, Cascada was old before it was birthed, Verano is dead. Verano being dead I see as a problem... we in the US should absolutely have gotten the new Opel Astra.  Make it only in premium trims, the small FWD lux segment is heating up, why abandon ship now?  At Cadillac, I really enjoy the CTS and CT6.  The ATS is a favorite too, but really Cadillac, we've been harping on that instrument cluster since the beginning of the car, you've done at least one refresh including an all new CUE system... you couldn't fix the speedo?

On engines - I remain unconvinced at the push towards smaller displacements with turbo and direct injection. The whole industry seems to be heading that way so I may not have much choice. However, in this regard, Ford as a whole is doing a better job at it than GM, particularly in 4-cylinders.  Where GM has Turbo V6es, they are pretty equal to Fords of a similar displacement, but availability in the model lineups is still too sparse to be of much use.  I'll still pick a GM V8 over a Ford Ecoboost V6 wherever the option affords me. 

On Transmissions - GM's 8-speed RWD is fantastic, it really should be the bar for the industry at the moment. I haven't driven a Ford 10-speed yet to compare. I'm not a fan of the transmission programming GM is doing lately.  Normal is far too conservative and sport is far too aggressive.... can't we have a goldilocks setting where the car reacts like we expect it to when we press the pedal? There is just too much nanny in the programming.  Ford's 6-speeds feel quaint. They're capable and get the job done, but they are outclassed by the 8-speeds and 9-speeds out there from many other brands. 

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I agree on some points Drew, but the Tranny comment is imo set that way to be the Goldilocks scenario. A true enthusiast will make the changes on his own via the very easy to use tuners now avail. Personally I have programmed my Yukon and my Impala's 6 speeds (I missed out on the 8speed in Yukon) and have actually left the CTS-V alone.. as the tuning in Touring is quite nice and docile while the Sport and Track mode programming is exactly the way I like.. and if I don't.. "M" to the rescue and I start shifting my own. The Vette being a Stick.. the rowing results are all mine8)

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Agree especially on the quality of the current Chevrolet line up.

2 minutes ago, Cmicasa the Great said:

I agree on some points Drew, but the Tranny comment is imo set that way to be the Goldilocks scenario. A true enthusiast will make the changes on his own via the very easy to use tuners now avail. Personally I have programmed my Yukon and my Impala's 6 speeds (I missed out on the 8speed in Yukon) and have actually left the CTS-V alone.. as the tuning in Touring is quite nice and docile while the Sport and Track mode programming is exactly the way I like.. and if I don't.. "M" to the rescue and I start shifting my own. The Vette being a Stick.. the rowing results are all mine8)

I really like the Impala programming just the way it is.

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3 minutes ago, A Horse With No Name said:

Agree especially on the quality of the current Chevrolet line up.

I really like the Impala programming just the way it is.

It was fine.. but I tuned it simply because I was curious to see what more I could extract. I was pleasantly surprised. The Yukon tho.. that needed to be tinkered with simply because GM loves to E-Throttle shit and tune their trannies for take off geared fuel economy... not to mention I had to kill Active Fuel Management. Hate that shit 

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My issue is primarily with the FWD 6-speeds and 8-speeds. They are far too reluctant to kick down when need be.

In normal mode in suburban driving, press the pedal.. "<bog> <bog> <bog> Oh you wanted to go? <downshift>".

In sport mode, you get the downshift you want when you want it, but then it holds the gear too long when you've backed off. 

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I recognize that at a GM favorite site, bringing up old wounds gets people amped up. I will drop the subject, as there are plenty of good reads out there if someone wanted to know the facts, rather than forum-ized versions of facts.

 

But, I will leave you all with this excellent read.  This guy is one of several who predicted GM's future, including BK, well before it happened.  It is quite telling.  And if memory serves, GM execs clearly never thought or expected the worst.

 

http://www.dailywealth.com/824/A-Letter-from-General-Motors-Chairman

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27 minutes ago, Cmicasa the Great said:

It was fine.. but I tuned it simply because I was curious to see what more I could extract. I was pleasantly surprised. The Yukon tho.. that needed to be tinkered with simply because GM loves to E-Throttle shit and tune their trannies for take off geared fuel economy... not to mention I had to kill Active Fuel Management. Hate that shit 

Would love to be closer to take that Impala for a spin.  Believe it or not it is actually one of my favorite GM cars. It is one thing to build an 80 grand Cadillac, it is another to build a car as class leading as the Impala and sell it for thirty grand!

17 minutes ago, Wings4Life said:

I recognize that at a GM favorite site, bringing up old wounds gets people amped up. I will drop the subject, as there are plenty of good reads out there if someone wanted to know the facts, rather than forum-ized versions of facts.

 

But, I will leave you all with this excellent read.  This guy is one of several who predicted GM's future, including BK, well before it happened.  It is quite telling.  And if memory serves, GM execs clearly never thought or expected the worst.

 

http://www.dailywealth.com/824/A-Letter-from-General-Motors-Chairman

I would be more interested in your actual thinking about what you do and do not like about the current line up of cars from both GM and Ford.

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1 hour ago, A Horse With No Name said:

 

I would be more interested in your actual thinking about what you do and do not like about the current line up of cars from both GM and Ford.

Then go back to page one and read them.

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On 10/13/2016 at 8:55 PM, El Kabong said:

So... that justifies losing 25hp?

okie dokie

I realize this is an old post... but yes it could.  From the CTS V-Sport to the XTS V-Sport the engine loses 10 horsepower and whopping 34 lb-ft of torque just by turning the engine sideways.  The STS gained 25 horsepower going from a side winder to longitudinal. 

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5 hours ago, Cmicasa the Great said:

Like always Wings chooses to pick and choose his knowledge even when history and documentation prove him wrong.. or in more appropriate terms.. to be a an idiot.

Ford HAD to go to to the banks early on because they were in every way getting ready to do exactly what GM did later. A DOE loan also helped Ford get thru the calamity that came.. MOFOs were so broke they had to sell their name...

GM, with Rick Wagoner and Co, ironically decided to actually weather the storm, and were actually seen as possibly pulling thru said storm until the recession hit.. and hit hard in 2008.. and everything when busto.. After that.. the BK was inevitable.. altho I personally cried for it as far back as 2006 to rid themselves of the UAW BULLSHIT that they were into..

 

But like Horsie said.. why the hell are we arguing almost decade old shit.. when financials show that currently.. Mary vs Mark.. the woman, as I often like.. is ON TOP. Ford's over reliance on Fleet (a few months in the almost 40% range ) is effing its financials up. It will in turn eventually eff up buyer's resale as well. GM decided to kill many fleet sales and push retail.. resulting in the highest ATPS in the industry, and the often criticized Cadillac. . led by the Escalade, CTS and new CT6, being the #1 or #2 highest ATP winner in the land

Ford resale is really already messed up.  I am not able to afford a Corvette or a CTS V, I am looking at cheaper performance cars.  The Focus ST and Fiesta ST are both neat cars but have hideous depreciation, even compared to something like the VW GTI. The GTI of course being tainted by the falling reputation of VW.

I think one also needs to look at how utterly bland most of the Ford lineup was in the 2006-2008 era compared to GM.  There was a very legitimate reason they were having a problem turning a profit by putting money to metal.

And while it is fun to talk about various cars in the dream car garage threads in the Lounge, I think I have decided that I will not be buying a Ford motor company product for my next car, or maybe ever. This thread has reminded me in a really negative wort of way of the arrogance of Ford in acting superior in not taking the bail out money. A few years ago I changed my on screen name from 66 Stang to a Horse with No Name because I did not want to associate myself with Ford because of their arrogant attitude.

Feeling really glad at the moment that I didn't pull the trigger on a new Focus ST.  Almost bought one a couple of years ago when I bought my TDI, and almost ordered one when it looked like the buy back was a sure thing.

I think Cadillac also deserves enormous credit for designs that are really modern and edgy.  There is a confidence to the design language that no other luxury car maker can match. 

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24 minutes ago, A Horse With No Name said:

Ford resale is really already messed up.  I am not able to afford a Corvette or a CTS V, I am looking at cheaper performance cars.  The Focus ST and Fiesta ST are both neat cars but have hideous depreciation, even compared to something like the VW GTI. The GTI of course being tainted by the falling reputation of VW.

I think one also needs to look at how utterly bland most of the Ford lineup was in the 2006-2008 era compared to GM.  There was a very legitimate reason they were having a problem turning a profit by putting money to metal.

And while it is fun to talk about various cars in the dream car garage threads in the Lounge, I think I have decided that I will not be buying a Ford motor company product for my next car, or maybe ever. This thread has reminded me in a really negative wort of way of the arrogance of Ford in acting superior in not taking the bail out money. A few years ago I changed my on screen name from 66 Stang to a Horse with No Name because I did not want to associate myself with Ford because of their arrogant attitude.

Feeling really glad at the moment that I didn't pull the trigger on a new Focus ST.  Almost bought one a couple of years ago when I bought my TDI, and almost ordered one when it looked like the buy back was a sure thing.

The funny thing about that...I made a Ford purchase in 2013 buying a Fusion DESPITE me being pissed at that lying arrogance with those dumb commercials.

And the bailout money had no influence on me either...

I was FOR the bailouts as I was for FoMoCo surviving their route taken...

 

I take it many Americans were pissed at the government interventions but it baffles me how these same Americans are pissed at GM and Chryco for the bailout money yet they dont cry foul when the government subsidizes foreign car makers to build their factories in the USA...

Or when NASA lets Toyota use the Space Shuttle as a HUGE billboard commercial...

Or worse...I dont see any American, including @Wings4Life bitch at these billionaire pro-sports team owners threaten to leave town unless the city in question builds them a new arena of some sorts....

 

OK back to Ford...

Ill keep this short and sweet.

I just AMAZED how Ford and GM went from interior zeros from the 1980s-2010s to interior heros from 2010-2016. A short time span where GM and Ford are now industry leaders, or close to it, in interior design, quality and execution.

Much still to improve...but very impressive non-the-less...for both companies.

 

Edited by oldshurst442
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3 minutes ago, oldshurst442 said:

The funny thing about that...I made a Ford purchase in 2013 buying a Fusion DESPITE me being pissed at that lying arrogance with those dumb commercials.

And the bailout money had no influence on me either...

I was FOR the bailouts as I was for FoMoCo surviving their route taken...

 

I take it many Americans were pissed at the government interventions but it baffles me how these same Americans are pissed at GM and Chryco for the bailout money yet they dont cry foul when the government subsidizes foreign car makers to build their factories in the USA...

Or when NASA lets Toyota use the Space Shuttle as a HUGE billboard commercial...

Or worse...I dont see any American, including @Wings4Life bitch at these billionaire pro-sports team owners threaten to leave town unless the city in question builds them a new arena of some sorts....

 

OK back to Ford...

Ill keep this short and sweet.

I just AMAZED how Ford and GM went from interior zeros from the 1980s-2010s to interior heros from 2010-2016. A short time span where GM and Ford are now industry leaders, or close to it, in interior design, quality and execution.

Much still to improve...but very impressive non-the-less...for both companies.

 

And that is the gods honest truth.  Both companies are thriving and have some cool designs.

But remembering how pissed I was at Ford for those commercials has really honestly pushed the blue oval boys out of my garage in terms of my next vehicle purchase.

Thankfully I will soon have about six or seven grand of VW money to spend on a non VW Audi group product.

And also in terms of leadership look at paint fit and finish.  I have been very impressed with what both Ford and GM have done.  They have also both done an excellent job at improving reliability also IMHO.

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On 2016-10-27 at 5:58 PM, Drew Dowdell said:

I realize this is an old post... but yes it could.  From the CTS V-Sport to the XTS V-Sport the engine loses 10 horsepower and whopping 34 lb-ft of torque just by turning the engine sideways.  The STS gained 25 horsepower going from a side winder to longitudinal. 

My point was that when you're trying to make the same model in different markets losing that kind of power and torque to meet local laws is pretty chintzy. It's the kind of thing you'd see from Lamborghini circa 1985, when the Countach lost its six-pack of Webers and 35hp to meet US regs.  

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5 minutes ago, El Kabong said:

My point was that when you're trying to make the same model in different markets losing that kind of power and torque to meet local laws is pretty chintzy. It's the kind of thing you'd see from Lamborghini circa 1985, when the Countach lost its six-pack of Webers and 35hp to meet US regs.  

If they had to re-route the exhaust in a strange and sub-optimal way due to steering gear, it would exactly explain why. 

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2 minutes ago, Drew Dowdell said:

If they had to re-route the exhaust in a strange and sub-optimal way due to steering gear, it would exactly explain why. 

Seems rational enough.

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I tried explaining this to him back on the first page here but because it is a Mustang and not a Camaro there is no rational thinking going on. Drew gave a great example of same engine losing power with rerouting exhaust and intake as well. That's just the science of the beast.

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Looking at cars in a dispassionate sort of way is really difficult when you love them.  I struggle with that all of the time.

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3 hours ago, A Horse With No Name said:

Seems rational enough.

A rationally planned global car would not have those compromises. Just a dispassionate observation. 

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22 minutes ago, El Kabong said:

A rationally planned global car would not have those compromises. Just a dispassionate observation. 

Oh you mean like how Cadillac is not building RHD ATS/CTS and Chevy isn't building RHD Camaros?

At least Ford tried instead of being like GM and saying Eff it...

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2 hours ago, Drew Dowdell said:

Oh you mean like how Cadillac is not building RHD ATS/CTS and Chevy isn't building RHD Camaros?

At least Ford tried instead of being like GM and saying Eff it...

Is Flat Rock up and running again?  

Look. All I know is that they were shouting from the rooftops about how this car was designed to go global. Then we find out that the 5.0 is constipated and the 5.2 is a non-starter in RHD markets. That doesn't sound like a very serious effort, especially in a segment where the V8 is still considered the norm. 

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