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Old 08-08-2004, 06:20   #1 (permalink)
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Question Greening Ford?

I am a graduate student researching Ford Motor Company, and I would love to have the opinion of Ford enthusiasts on the following questions:

1) What do you think of Fordís efforts to become more environmentally friendly?

2) Do environmental issues (such as fuel economy, pollution, manufacturing processes, etc.) influence your decisions when buying an automobile? And if so, how?

3) What if any responsibility should auto makers have for the environment?

Thanks so much for your time and your help. I look forward to learning from your thoughts and opinions.
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Old 08-08-2004, 18:51   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Greening Ford?

1. Personally, I think that they stink. But they are doing more than most, with the escape hybrid and such. If you head on over to Ford.com (sans .au), there is a part of the site specifically outlining environmental activities that Ford undertake, such as the 'soar like a falcon' where ford is contributing to the conservation of various species of falcons.

2. They do... for example if I were to buy a falcon, I would feel pretty guilty cause of all those resources I'm using jus for one person. However, a car like a mazda 6 would be as big as I go as long as I'm the one person with no family etc. I might even look into a 3 or Focus.

3. Automotive makers should have to:
- Have an alternative fuel development program
- recycle all materials possible
- build out of recycled materials where possible

Having said all of this I believe that the government is the major problem here, businesses should not be charged to recycle and should recieve tax cuts for developing programs that will help with the environment.
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Old 08-08-2004, 19:04   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Greening Ford?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ford.boy
1. Personally, I think that they stink. But they are doing more than most, with the escape hybrid and such. If you head on over to Ford.com (sans .au), there is a part of the site specifically outlining environmental activities that Ford undertake, such as the 'soar like a falcon' where ford is contributing to the conservation of various species of falcons.

2. They do... for example if I were to buy a falcon, I would feel pretty guilty cause of all those resources I'm using jus for one person. However, a car like a mazda 6 would be as big as I go as long as I'm the one person with no family etc. I might even look into a 3 or Focus.

3. Automotive makers should have to:
- Have an alternative fuel development program
- recycle all materials possible
- build out of recycled materials where possible

Having said all of this I believe that the government is the major problem here, businesses should not be charged to recycle and should recieve tax cuts for developing programs that will help with the environment.
yeap i agree with everything ford.boy said

I think ford AUS needs to focus on cutting down fuel consumption first, thats the most important consumer concern IMO. If you could get falcon drinking like a camry or alike you will have a winner. But I guess consumption and performance dont go hand in hand...but you never know.

I would love to see some kind of fuel cell falcon. Im pretty sure holden made some kind of eco-friend commy a while back.

BTW, you still at uni or are you in the Ford garduate program. If so could ya PM me with how you got there..
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Old 08-08-2004, 22:14   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Greening Ford?

I have an Idea - XR6 Turbo LPG - lots of power and stuff all emissions
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Old 08-08-2004, 23:13   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Greening Ford?

Quote:
1) What do you think of Fordís efforts to become more environmentally friendly?
Hmm what are those efforts? Please tell me. Falcon has some of the worse fuel economy going around. Ford has done a reasonable job with the LPG falcon, however they never went full monty on it, it is atleast now not just a aftermarket patch job, but still not a very well thought out varient. Wheres the LPG injection not some half assed carby. All thats going to go to waste because government wants to tax LPG and thus any benifits as a green fuel get tossed out the window because no one will buy the bloody things.

What other enviromentially friendly initatives do they have except power deficets? They sell a hybrid here? Are they working like mad to improve fuel consumption, cut weight, improve transmissions and gearing, improving aerodynamics? They are going to fund my steam car project? What about a direct injection diesel engine? Nah, thought not. MKII would have been a good time to do something for economy and enviromental issues but instead they chucked in a few freebies which actually increased weight and fuel consumption.

Quote:
2) Do environmental issues (such as fuel economy, pollution, manufacturing processes, etc.) influence your decisions when buying an automobile? And if so, how?
Yes, fuel economy matters if you pay for fuel. Even if you don't it means you got to keep pumping the stuff in, which is worse cause of that tiny falcon fuel tank. I think everyone understands the benifits of having your car use less fuel, its a clear easy to understand concept. Emissions is another issue entirely, which I don't think is fully understood by the general public or the government. Emissions is someone elses problem, Australias a big country mate.. we scoff at the sea rising 5 metres in our lifetimes. Still plenty of land to live on.

As for myself, I buy what I can afford and I can fit into. There is no real economical/eco friendly car I can fit into anyway even if I can afford it moot point for me. I have no options.

Quote:
3) What if any responsibility should auto makers have for the environment?
If your turning out 100,000 things a year for domestic comsumption you should be a bit concerned about where the buggers are ending up. Following Holdens lead and using long life catalitic converters with stainless exaust on all cars would be a start. Atleast as the cars get old they won't be noisy smoggy things and most of the emission stuff will still kinda work. This also lowers running costs because you don't have to toss your old exaust out in 4 years where it proberly ends up in land fill. Non return fuel lines are another way to cut evaporative emissions. Seems kind of odd to use petrol to cool the engine, then put that hot petrol back into the tank, so eventually a fair deal of it is gas, so next time you fill up, which is not long with a tiny falcon tank and a big falcon engine, it all goes into the atmosphere.

Ford Australia seems to have pretty much done nothing about enviromental issues. And if anyone tries to sell me on Ford US, go over there and tell me about the Exploder, Expedition and F trucks. If a greeny ever needs to show a picture of whats wrong in the world.. They will show those. Excellent..

Last decent effort Ford Australia did was back in the early 80's from memory when they had a Factory backed team in the Shell Milage marathon competition, which I'm sure was done for publicity value only.

That took out the title and I belive it remains the record in australia, however the Shell milage competition is kaput so I don't even think it makes it valid anymore. Proberly on leaded fuel anyway. The competition when bust because no manufacturers in Australia were interested in it (HA!), and school teams kept beating them! (HA) My own time at school I helped assist defending our record, even against the million dollar factory backed Honda team with matching midgit driver, all flown out from japan. Doesn't matter anyway, press only cares out impractically stupid solar cars.

Ford have marginally improved economy on various models, but a BA doesn't use much if any less than a 4.1 injected six from 1980.

If Australian manufacturers were serious about alternative technolgies, physicist like me with practical and proven backgrounds in combusion efficency, with fantastic ideas and prototypes for alternative energy transport and wouldn't be mindless applying for science sales positions. I would have some magical dream job with about 500 other people in some united initative for australian manufacturers and compoent suppliers make real, practical solutions and improvements.

Funny you mention this, somebody at the www.ls1.com.au forums recently bought up the problem of Australian cars and poor emissions. Maybe go ask him what he thinks..
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Old 08-09-2004, 16:16   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Greening Ford?

Also worth checking out www.greenvehicleguide.gov.au
and for details on the BA

Last edited by Aussie Falcon; 08-09-2004 at 17:44.
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Old 08-09-2004, 17:08   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Greening Ford?

Falcons dont consume that much fuel - barely any more than my Laser, i wouldnt feel bad. However, i think all car companies should switch to Ethanol engines, and make some Ethanol/Electric hybrids
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Old 08-09-2004, 17:22   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Greening Ford?

Quote:
Originally Posted by chevypower
Falcons dont consume that much fuel - barely any more than my Laser, i wouldnt feel bad. However, i think all car companies should switch to Ethanol engines, and make some Ethanol/Electric hybrids
jesus..you must give your laser some stick. Im not saying that a falcon guzzles it down, but look at the euro cars. Ok they are worth a bit more, so there is more technology in them, and they have slightly smaller engines; but they consume alot less than our cars.

It wont happen overnight, but it should be a priority for Ford to make the I6 the best car in australia in terms of consumption. That alone would increase sales anyway so in the end it all works out.
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Old 08-09-2004, 18:20   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Greening Ford?

the Laser uses 9L per 100km -10 if i drive properly (not thrashing it) The Astra and Focus wouldnt be much different -part of the reason is due to the overly short gearing needed to get the things moving. Just looked at the Audi S4 on drive.com it gets a 4.2L V8 putting out 9-11L per 100km on the highway and 16-18L per 100km in the city (250kw/410Nm) My dads pushrod 5.7L Caprice that is called by some as unrefined and without technology because it is Australian/American but despite the Caprice using a 4spd auto and being much larger and heavier than the Audi, and having this "unrefined" engine (Ls1) its very smooth, quiet, likes to rev, pulls hard down low and certainly doesnt use any more fuel than that Audi. The fact that Audi uses a smaller and lighter car with European technology, a smaller engine, and a 6 spd auto doesnt do a thing for economy - just marketing
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Old 08-09-2004, 20:36   #10 (permalink)
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Re: Greening Ford?

Quote:
Originally Posted by cDarcy
I am a graduate student researching Ford Motor Company, and I would love to have the opinion of Ford enthusiasts on the following questions:
Quote:
Originally Posted by cDarcy
1) What do you think of Fordís efforts to become more environmentally friendly?
Not good at all ! - The Territory is an absolute fuel guzzler. People will begin waking up that they are putting in 16-18l/100km around the city. The Falcon is really not that much better, and still does 13-15l/100km (being realistic here. The competition (ie..Holden) are at around the 11.5-12l/100km and will be releasing a motor which does roughly the same with more power.

This is why I bought an Escape, and not a Territory.

The LPG Falcon was a good step in the right direction, but 1. The coverage of LPG retail outlets prohibits this option for some people, 2. Loss of power will be an issue for many people, 3. What is the long term maintainability of LPG vehicles ?, 4. Will the green 4.0i LPG last as long as their equivalent Petrol engines ?


Quote:
Originally Posted by cDarcy
2) Do environmental issues (such as fuel economy, pollution, manufacturing processes, etc.) influence your decisions when buying an automobile? And if so, how?
Fuel Economy - YES ! just look at the price of fuel. O.k maybe not from an environmetal perspective, but when it hurts the hip pocket, people begin noticing.

Pollution/Emissions - YES, but not as much as Fuel economy.

Manufacturing processes much less as these are less visible to the general public. We are yet to see a real effort for re-cycling of old or outdated vehicles. Most end up in tips or for used parts which go into other vehicles which eventually end up in tips.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cDarcy
3) What if any responsibility should auto makers have for the environment?
Alot of the responsibility !. Look at the % contribution to air pollution that cars/transport make, and that about equates to the level of responsibility that manufacturers need to accept - about 60% !
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