Thursday, December 15, 2011
Wednesday, November 23, 2011
Tuesday, October 18, 2011
Sunday, September 11, 2011
Monday, August 22, 2011
STONEHAM, Mass. – Pickup truck buyers are grabbing V6-equipped Ford F-150s at an impressive clip, thanks to the speedy adoption of Ford’s EcoBoost technology and increased fuel economy on all six-cylinder F-Series models. July marked the third consecutive month that U.S. Ford dealerships sold more V6 models of the Ford F-Series than V8-powered F-Series models. Meanwhile, the Ford F-150 EcoBoost V6 sold more on its own than all of its V6 pickup competitors combined during the month.
Spurring the sales boom are Ford’s two new V6 powerplants, a 3.5-liter turbocharged EcoBoost engine and a 3.7-liter naturally aspirated unit, both of which provide power without penalties at the pumps. According to J.D. Power and Associates, the two Ford V6 engines made up 79.5 percent of all full-sized V6 truck sales on the market in July. Even in the shadow of the EcoBoost, the 3.7-liter 2011 Ford F-150 V6 managed to top the combined sales of all other competing full-size V6 pickups during the month.
“In the past, you could have either good power or good fuel economy, but Ford’s new V6 engines are bringing the two together in an appealing way, even for the most die-hard V8 fans,” said Alan Melkonian, owner and general manager of Massachusetts Ford dealership Stoneham Ford. “The EcoBoost is getting all the attention, but even the new naturally aspirated V6 produces more horsepower than the V8 F-150 available a couple years ago. And, it still gets 23 mpg on the highway.”
Ford dealerships sold 49,104 F-Series trucks in July, of which 56 percent came from V6 sales. EcoBoost V6 sales comprised 40 percent of all F-Series sales, while the naturally aspirated V6 contributed 16 percent.
No other pickup truck producing more than 350 horsepower is as fuel efficient as the Ford F-150 EcoBoost V6, which combines 22-mpg highway fuel economy with 365 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque. That torque, which is available at a low 2,500 rpm, enables the F-150 V6 EcoBoost to tow up to 11,300 pounds, more than the V8-equipped Chevrolet Silverado 1500 and the V8 HEMI-equipped Ram 1500.
“Ford is refining its engine designs to produce greater power and fuel economy in light of increasing federal mandates and driver demand,” Melkonian noted. “While the EcoBoost technology is already making a name for itself in the F-150, the Ford Taurus SHO and the Ford Flex, it will be spreading through the Ford lineup to increase fuel economy and drivability in a number of Ford vehicles.”
The debuts of the Ford Explorer EcoBoost and Ford Edge EcoBoost are expected this fall for the 2012 model year. Both SUVs will feature the 2.0-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder engine, which will act as a companion to the V6 engines currently powering the Edge and Explorer for 2011 model year. The Edge EcoBoost returned 30 mpg on the highway during EPA testing, becoming Ford’s 13th variation of a model and a drivetrain that combine to achieve at least 30 mpg. The Explorer EcoBoost will get 28 mpg on the highway, according to the EPA.
Wednesday, July 20, 2011
Numerous states have already implemented bans on handheld phone use, ranging from texting to making calls at all, but the federal government has yet to chime in on the subject. Massachusetts passed a law banning texting while driving in 2010, but handheld cell phone use remains legal for non-junior operators in the state, with many seeing it as a serious danger for drivers that already have enough distractions
“It’s about time we start tackling the problem of distracted drivers nationally, and cell phones should absolutely be at the top of the list,” said Alan Melkonian, owner and general manager of Massachusetts Ford dealership Stoneham Ford. “I’m very pleased that Ford has been proactive about supporting this bill, even as other automakers are still burying their heads in the sand. When it comes to driver safety, we can’t delay any longer.”
According to a 2006 study by the University of Utah, using a cell phone while driving delays the driver’s reaction time as much as being at the legal blood alcohol limit of 0.8 percent, and a 2009 study by Virginia Tech reported that dialing on a cell phone made it nearly three times more likely that a car driver would be involved in a crash or near-crash situation. In addition, drivers performing the same act in a heavy vehicle or truck increased the likelihood of a crash by nearly six times. With an ever-increasing mountain of evidence, auto manufacturers and legislators are finding ways to get cell phones out of drivers’ hands.
Automakers have been keen on introducing technology into their vehicles that enable hands-free operation of phones – an action that would remain legal should the new legislation pass. Ford offers affordable access to this technology through its SYNC software, which allows calling through voice commands and buttons on the steering wheel with most Bluetooth-enabled phones. SYNC is available across the Ford lineup, either as standard feature or as a $400 option. The automaker is also working with Burlington, Massachusetts-based Nuance Communications to improve the system’s vocabulary and ability to decipher the intent of the driver should they use unrecognized commands.
In an effort to stay ahead of the curve of growing smartphone usage, Ford is expanding and improving its SYNC AppLink offering, which grants users voice-controlled access to smartphone apps like Pandora internet radio, a service that drivers might otherwise access with their hands while driving. Currently available on the 2011 Ford Fiesta, SYNC AppLink will be featured in 10 Ford vehicles for the 2012 model year.
“Ford isn’t just saying that driving while talking on cell phones is dangerous and then leaving it at that,” Melkonian added. “They are investing a lot of time and resources into improving the situation. Ford has proved that the technology to create safer highways is out there and drivers don’t have to be in a luxury sedan to have access to it. It makes our team proud to be working at a Ford dealership.”
Tuesday, June 28, 2011
The High Five Tour is making its way across the country and visiting Ford dealerships like Stoneham Ford, which will be making a $2,000 contribution to the organization’s fundraising efforts during its Boston-area stop on Thursday, June 30th.
“We are thrilled to have Colonel Folsom visit our dealership during his drive through Massachusetts,” said Alan Melkonian, owner and general manager of Stoneham Ford. “We have enormous respect for what he is trying to accomplish. The brave men and women of our armed services need our support and so do their families, so we are pleased to have this opportunity to give a little something back to them.”
“I am grateful for Ford’s support of the tour and for Stoneham Ford’s donation,” said Colonel John Folsom. “Soldiers and their families need our help to cope with the physical, psychological and spiritual stress that war causes. With generous donations like this, we can continue our mission.”
The High Five Tour will be visiting Stoneham Ford around noon this Thursday. For additional information on the High Five Tour, visit: http://www.highfivetour.com/.
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
STONEHAM, MASS. -- Alan Melkonian eyes the collection of 2011 Ford Fusion Hybrid sedans at Stoneham Ford, his Massachusetts Ford dealership. They’re selling well with their sharp looks and 41 mpg fuel economy in the city, just the thing for Boston Metro commuters squeezed by rising costs at the gas pump.
The 2011 Ford Fusion Hybrid leads the entire mid-size sedan class in city fuel economy, and a report from Ford Inside News suggests that the automaker wants to widen the gap. When 2012 Fusions arrive at Greater Boston Ford dealerships next spring, they could offer as much as 48 mpg in the city with help from Ford’s new electronic continuously variable transmission.
“Massachusetts drivers are seeing more and more money poured into their gas tanks these days,” Melkonian said. “There’s no reason to settle for a car that gets poor gas mileage, or to buy something that sacrifices size or performance in the name of fuel economy. The hybrid 2011 Fusion gets the job done in a spacious, fun-to-drive package by running on electric power at low speeds, so those traffic jams we get stuck in won’t be siphoning cash out of your wallet.”
The 2011 Ford Fusion Hybrid earns 41 mpg in the city and 36 mpg on the highway, numbers usually seen in compact cars. The secret behind the numbers is Ford’s use of a 2.5-liter Atkinson-Cycle four-cylinder engine that runs with incredible efficiency at all speeds and pairs seamlessly with the hybrid drive.
Fusion owners will find it easy to pair up with their cars as well, thanks to the innovative SmartGaugeCluster with EcoGuide that can show as much or as little information as the driver wants. The built-in electric vehicle meter helps drivers stay in electric-only mode for as long a distance as possible and at speeds up to 47 mph in ideal conditions. There are also meters that show how much power is going to accessories like the radio, air conditioning and lights.
While efficiency is at its core, the Ford Fusion Hybrid is not an austere vehicle meant only for gas savings. The options list allows for plenty of creature comforts, including leather upholstery and a remote-start system. Standard options include dual-zone electronic climate control, a 10-way power-adjustable driver’s seat and four-way power-adjustable passenger seat. Ford SYNC technology allows voice control of a Bluetooth-connected phone or connected MP3 player for everything from switching songs to sending simple replies to text messages.
“Ford’s 2011 Fusion Hybrid mixes the efficiency of a hybrid drivetrain with everything owners demand in a sedan, and I’m sure that tradition will continue in the 2012 model,” Melkonian noted. “There are no sacrifices here. You simply get in and go, and I think most people will have a hard time telling it’s a hybrid at all.”