Ford is recalling 6,308 units of the 2012 and 2013 Focus Electric and 2013 Focus ST that were fitted with HID headlights because a "wiring incompatibility" could keep the front side marker lights from working. A bulletin from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says the recall should begin in the middle of this month, after which owners can take their cars to dealers to have the wiring assembly repaired free of charge.
2012 Ford Focus
From the headlines-we-never-expected-to-see file: "Stick shifts popular again..." Yes, we thought manual transmissions were on their deathbed, what with every carmaker bemoaning low take rates and reports that Volkswagen has decided to do away with them in both its Audi R8 sports car and throughout the range of Lamborghini models. But lo and behold, it seems that manuals accounted for 6.5 percent of new vehicle sales during the first quarter this year, the highest take rate since 2006, according
We've got to hand it to Ford of Europe – this is one of the most brilliant marketing stunts we've ever seen. Blending the correct amounts of populist outrage, mockery of the common man, hidden cameras, big budget technology, and gritty urban realism into one literal over-the-top promotion that – get this – is actually relevant to the vehicle it is designed to promote? Well, we're impressed, to say the least.
Along with Renault-Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn, Ford CEO Alan Mulally is confident in the growth of the electric car segment. It's a long-term play, though, so Mulally isn't committing the electric Ford Focus EV to making a strong sales statement. For now, Ford's chief says he'd be fine moving fewer than 5,000 Focus EVs in the model's first full year. And even that would mean a steep rise in uptake based on just 12 having been sold in December and January.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Association has announced on its website that Ford is recalling 140,000 Focus models built between August 1, 2010 and October 18, 2011. The defect in question is a seal in the wiring harness connector to the passenger side wiper motor that may be missing.
Most everyone at Ford is grinning from ear-to-ear these days, as the company is enjoying profits as well as a vastly improved product portfolio and public image. Sales are up, the product pipeline is full, and market share grew last year. You can almost imagine Ford CEO Alan Mulally saying, "What, me worry?"
The Ford Focus sedan comes in four trim flavors, S, SE, SEL and Titanium, while the five-door hatch omits the base S version. Keeping form with past economy car tradition, only the S and SE trims have been offered with a five-speed manual transmission, but that changes with the 2012 Focus: the top-drawer Titanium trim will shortly receive a manual option.
As popular as their vehicles are with aftermarket customizers, Ford wouldn't miss out on something like the SEMA show. And while the Mustang and various Ford trucks play a big role in the Blue Oval booth this year, a significant part of the Motor Company's exposition centers around the latest Focus.
Even though Ford's light vehicle sales were up seven percent in August of this year versus last, the company is running low on a very popular product: there simply aren't enough of the 2012 Focus to go around. The company's sales analyst, George Pipas, said it's because there isn't enough inventory, with 5,500 Focuses in stock at the end of July.
Hyundai promotes its redesigned 2011 Elantra as a 40-mpg rated subcompact no matter how it's optioned. Meanwhile, Ford can only say, officially, that the 2012 Focus cracks the coveted 40-mpg mark when equipped with the SFE (super fuel economy) package and six-speed automatic transmission. This must upset Ford, so to prove that the Focus is a fuel-sipping hatch regardless of its options, the Blue Oval organized a media drive in Romeo, MI recently.
We're nearly certain that robots will one day rise up and take over the planet. We've watched The Terminator enough times now to see how the scenario will play out. Thankfully, robots aren't advanced enough yet to ruin your life, but they might be smart enough to ruin your day... at least if you're a car buyer waiting to pick up a brand-new 2012 Ford Focus.
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