The Ford Motor Company offers a wide range of affordable cars and trucks, from subcompacts to full-size trucks. Ford is also technology-driven, having developed hybrid powertrains, fuel-saving turbocharged engines and touch-screen multimedia systems.
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It all started back in 1903 when Henry Ford and a few investors founded the company that would bear his name. The first vehicles produced were the Model C, the Model B, the Model F, the Model R, the Model S, the Model N and the Model K, all powered by 2- and 4-cylinder engines.
However, the game-changer was the famous Model T introduced in 1908. In the following years, Ford had pretty much pioneered mass vehicle production with the elaboration of assembly lines. Offered in several body styles, over 15 million copies of the car, nicknamed Tin Lizzie, were produced up until 1927.
The Model A followed, while Ford introduced their first V8 engine in 1932. Deluxe and Super Deluxe models were offered in the 1940s, while the F-Series pickup was introduced in 1948 and still produced today. Classic models such as the Crestline, the Custom, the Fairlane, the Thunderbird, the Ranchero and the Galaxie were introduced in the ‘50s, alongside the short-lived Edsel and Canadian-exclusive Frontenac.
In the 1960s, the Falcon, LTD, Torino, Bronco and Econoline were added to the line-up, but the arrival of the Mustang pony car in 1964 was the big news back then. The historic GT40 race car was also developed in the ‘60s, and was a four-time winner of the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Ford’s vehicles were getting larger and larger right up until the gas crisis of the 1970s. Smaller cars like the Maverick, the Pinto, the Granada, the Courier pickup and the Fiesta hatchback were launched. High-performance editions of the Mustang were offered, the Mach 1 and Boss 302. The downsized Mustang II didn’t last long, replaced by a new model after only 5 years.
In 1981, Ford served up the Escort, a new compact hatchback that sold in big numbers and from which spawned the 2-seat EXP. The Tempo replaced the Fairmont, the LTD became the Crown Victoria, while the mid-size Taurus, the Mazda-designed but Korean-built Festiva subcompact, the Ranger pickup, the Bronco II sport-utility and Aerostar minivan were launched in the mid-‘80s. The Probe sports coupe arrived in 1989.
Later in the ‘90s, the Festiva retired in favour of the Aspire, while the global-market Contour replaced the Tempo. The sporty Escort ZX2 was also available for a few years. The Explorer arrived in 1991 and quickly became one of America’s best-selling trucks. The Windstar minivan also arrived, eventually superseding the Aerostar.
In the 2000s, the fun-to-drive Focus hatchback and wagon arrived, replacing the Escort, and the mid-size Fusion was launched in replacement of the Contour. The Super Duty versions of the F-Series dawned, as well as the Escape compact SUV, the Edge mid-size SUV, the Expedition full-size SUV and the Explorer Sport Trac pickup.
Models that have come and gone during that decade include the Five Hundred sedan, the Freestyle and Taurus X crossovers, the Freestar minivan, the Excursion full-size SUV as well as the mighty GT, inspired by the original and offered in 2005 and 2006. Hybrid powertrains started to appear in Escape and Fusion models.
Today, Ford’s line-up consists of the Fiesta subcompact and the Focus compact, both available as a hatchback and a sedan, The Focus Electric, the Fusion and Fusion Hybrid, the full-size Taurus, the Mustang and Shelby GT500, the Escape and Escape Hybrid, the Edge, the Explorer, the Expedition, the Transit Connect cargo van, the E-Series van as well as the F-Series and Super Duty pickups.
For some reason the wisdom of smaller-than-standard size vans evaded North America until mid-2009 when the first Transit Connect arrived. The vehicle immediately won North American Truck of the Year at the 2010 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) and has proven itself popular with buyers ever since.
Due to the tremendous number of combinations of body styles, powertrain choices and special editions, expect Mustang pricing from this generation to range anywhere from $7,000 to $75,000 or more, depending on the unit in question.
There may be no such thing as a perfect car, but the new 2014 Ford Escape SE comes close by checking all the necessary boxes when it comes to buying a compact SUV.
The 2015 Ford Fiesta 5-Door Hatch sports a thoroughly modern design both inside and out. It offers an impressive choice of normally-aspirated and turbocharged engines as well as many standard technological goodies.
The 2015 Ford Fiesta Sedan is a small modern sedan with nifty interior and exterior styling. It has an impressive selection of normally-aspirated and turbocharged engines as well as many standard technological features.
Ford had just revealed the F-150's trick rear sliding window. Sliding windows are nothing new for the average pickup truck but in the new F-150's case, it's how it all happens that is quite special.