The 2012 Ford Flex comes closest to the ideal of any Large Crossover SUV scoring a close win over the Chevrolet Traverse. Eighty-percent or more of Flex owners find these characteristics ideal: exterior size, exterior styling, passenger roominess, seat comfort, ride and handling, tires and wheels, ease of getting in and out and safety features.
Owners of the 2012 Honda Pilot award the crossover SUV with AutoPacific's Ideal Vehicle Award for the 2012 Premium Mid-Size Crossover SUV category. The Pilot also won AutoPacific's 2012 Vehicle Satisfaction Award. Winning both awards in the same year is an impressive achievement.
Owners of the 2012 Ford Super Duty Pickups give the trucks top ratings in twenty-three of forty-eight characteristics measured in AutoPacific’s Vehicle Satisfaction Award research. This is the second year in a row the Super Duties have won the VSA for its class.
Traditionally, the mid-size car class has had relatively bland styling. That changed with the launch of the 2011 Sonata in early 2010 where over half of the buyers indicated that exterior styling was extremely important in their selection of the car. Sonata's swoopy styling broke the mid-size car mold. The 2011 Kia Optima that followed the Sonata is strikingly handsome in its own EuroKorean way. Toyota stayed very conservative with its new 2012 entry and Honda is rumored to have continued its very conservative streak with the next generation Accord coming this fall. The 2013 Ford Fusion is another game changer in the mold of Sonata and Optima, but even with Fusion's advanced styling, Altima may have pushed the envelope the farthest.
Last week George asked us to share our pre-NAIAS thoughts on what the show might hold for each the VehicleVoice staffers. One of my interests centered on the reveal of the 2013 Ford Fusion, as it represents one for Ford’s single most important vehicles in maintaining momentum with US consumers. Ford’s last mid-cycle refresh of the Fusion, brought considerable attention to the vehicle and increased sales significantly. At NAIAS this week, VehicleVoice got the chance to review a completely updated model, which takes the Fusion to a new level.
An annual pilgrimage for the auto industry is to attend the press days at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit each January. Unfortunately, this year I cannot attend because my physicians caution that I should not be heaving carry-ons into and out of overhead bins and baggage carousels.
So, I'm jealous.
I need to give you full disclosure: I love engines with forced induction. Turbos and superchargers make me smile, well, most of the time. My father had a Lincoln MKT EcoBoost when they first came out and I appreciated the idea of a turbo V6 but wasn’t particularly impressed with the the package. The front-wheel biased all-wheel drive torque steer and transmission calibration never seemed to be as polished as I had hoped for in a vehicle of that price point. It could use a dose of that torque vectoring system from the Focus to balance out the massive amount of power. My opinion of the V6 EcoBoost from Ford was basically “meh”, as I never felt like the refinement was all there. A stint in a Taurus SHO confirmed this fact for [...]
When Ford announced that the 5.0L V8 was coming back to life for the 2011 model year, the Boss 302 rumors immediately followed. We haven’t seen the Boss 302 name grace a Mustang since 1970. It’s back for the 2012 model year and after a few days in one, it is safe to say it is the must-have Mustang since the last Boss 302.