Tag Archives: technology

Ford-Magna Partnership Targets Carbon Fiber Subframes

Ford-Magna Partnership

Automakers are constantly pushing the limits for performance and fuel economy by recreating and refining powertrains. Ford is one of the few automakers taking measures to improve fuel economy by dropping weight as well. The manufacturer recently partnered up with Magna to create new carbon fiber subframes.


No matter the make or model, odds are a vehicle’s subframe is primarily made of traditional metals; the new Ford-Magna partnership looks to change that. The pair have created what could very well become the next generation of automotive engineering.


New carbon fiber subframes could dramatically reduce the weight of a vehicle. A subframe made from carbon fiber cuts weight by around 34%, compared to a traditional subframe. The newest innovation is made of two molded pieces and four metal components. By comparison, a traditional subframe is made from 45 steel parts.


Surely a lightweight carbon fiber subframe is weak, right? Wrong. In fact, a carbon fiber subframe has passed all of Magna’s testing and is just as durable as a standard subframe. Ford and Magna have a history together when it comes to performance. Magna developed the Mustang Shelby Cobra GT500’s carbon fiber grille opening reinforcement, among other projects. A lighter subframe would lead to weight reduction, increased performance, and a rise in fuel efficiency.


We can’t wait to see the production results of the Ford-Magna partnership here at Nick Nicholas Ford!

2017 Ford Super Duty technology

Ford Super Duty Technology: State-of-the-Art Systems

Ford put the new Super Duty to the test by asking real-world customers what they appreciated most about the model, as well as what they would like to see more of. The answers came back, showing overwhelmingly that the new Super Duty technology was not only impressive, but customers can’t get enough of it.

According to Ford, the Ford Super Duty technology is truly advanced, especially when you opt for the Lariat, King Ranch, and Platinum trims. The all-new pickup features 20 class-exclusive technologies and features, as well as a number of performance systems to improve towing and hauling. Among the most popular features are Adaptive Steering, Trailer Reverse Guidance, Adaptive Cruise Control, and BLIS, among others.

“Technology innovation is proving to be a differentiator,” said John Rieger, Ford Super Duty consumer marketing manager. “Our 20 class-exclusive, driver-assist technologies help increase productivity and boost driver confidence − especially when serving Super Duty’s primary mission of towing long, heavy trailers.”

When properly equipped, the new Super Duty can tow up to 32,500 pounds and it has a payload capacity of 7,630 pounds. While the powertrain is certainly the source of raw performance, new technologies also help you drive with this heavy payload. For example, rearview cameras and cross-traffic alert are ideal for towing and hauling in tight situations. For a truly advanced pickup, check out the new Ford Super Duty lineup.

Ford Last Mile Mobility Challenge’s Carr-E

The Ford Last Mile Mobility Challenge put the best of Ford’s employees to the test. It challenged employees to develop new innovations to its vehicles. This led to the Carr-E, developed by Ford employees to improve safety and utilize technology.

The innovation challenged specifically challenged Ford employees to develop transportation devices that could be used in areas where your car might not be able to go. One of these devices was the Carr-E system, developed by Ford systems engineer Kilian Vas. It’s an innovative personal transportation system that fits easily into a car trunk and has multiple options for transportation.

Ford Last Mile Mobility Challenge

Carr-E can go 14 miles at up to 11 miles per hour. It moves about on four wheels and can be used to transport people or objects. It can even transport objects alone thanks to an electronic transmitter.

“When developing Carr-E,” said Vas, “I was inspired by Ford’s expansion into both an auto and a mobility company, but I’m also aware of how rapidly cities are growing and how getting around urban areas will become more complicated. I really wanted to create a device that makes commuting easier and more fun.”

Innovation is always around the corner, thanks to Ford!


Ford’s Last 35 Years – Celebrating Nick Nicholas Ford’s Anniversary!

Nick Nicholas Ford 35th anniversary - Inverness, Florida

We here at Nick Nicholas Ford are celebrating the 35th anniversary of the dealership and, to commemorate the date, we want to look back at Ford’s last 35 years. The last three decades haven’t been without their fair share of problems but we’re proud to say we powered through, just like the Ford F-150 would.

1981 Ford Escort

1981 Ford Escort – Photo taken by Kieran White

In 1981, the year the dealership was founded, the fifth-generation Ford Escort officially hit the market. The car shared components with the European model. As a result of the “world” car, Ford added an “Escort” badge over a glove. The Escort eventually became one of the best-selling models of the decade.

Just a few years later in 1985, Ford revolutionized the world of automotive design with the Taurus full-size sedan. The curving lines broke the box-car type bodies that most vehicles held at the time.

1990 brought the Ford Explorer, effectively spurring the launch of the SUV segment. The Explorer quickly out-classed standard station wagons and served as an excellent replacement for the Ford Bronco.

1979 Ford Bronco Ranger XLT

1979 Ford Bronco Ranger XLT – Photo by Sicnag

1996 brought innovation that predicted the rise of hybrid and electric vehicles. The Ford Ranger Electric Vehicle boasted features like regenerative braking, lead acid batteries, and a 700-pound payload.

2004 saw Ford brought the GT supercar to the road. The performance-driven model was inspired by the GT40 that ruled the 24 Hours of Le Mans Race in the 1960s.

In 2009, Ford revolutionized performance by offering turbocharged EcoBoost engines. Today, those engines are found in many models throughout Ford’s lineup.

Celebrate with us for the remainder of the year – it’s party time! With new 2017 models in stock already, we’re ready for a new year!

Which 2017 Ford Fusion Trim is the Best for You?

So, you’ve decided to buy a brand new car. You even know that you’d like to buy a 2017 Ford Fusion! The next question is: which trim level are you going to get?

If you don’t know a lot about cars, trims may seems like a minor detail when you’re purchasing. However, this is not the case at all. Trim levels determine different standard features that come with the vehicle. This means that each level is different, and comes with a different price tag.

Following is a very helpful infographic from The News Wheel about the different trim levels on the 2017 Ford Fusion:

2017 ford fusion trim level comparison infographic

This image shows three possible levels that you can choose from when buying a new Fusion. They look the same on the outside for the most part, but the details are what set them apart.

Price: There is a difference of more than $11,000 between all of these vehicles, but why? If you look at the engine type and features each holds, you can see where the difference lies.

Engine: If you’re not a car guru, engine may seem like an uninteresting factor. But when it comes down to it, the engine determines a lot about your vehicle. It will influence the fuel-efficiency of your car, as well as the power it can put out! We recommend test driving cars with different engines to get a feel for what they can do.

Features: This what most people look for in different trim levels. Here is where you will look for different technology, audio and safety features.

When purchasing or leasing a new vehicle, these are all great things to look for. If you’re in the market for a new Ford, visit Nick Nicholas Ford for great prices and customer service!

Ford Fusion Energi Hybrid Ups Range to 610 Miles!

“Range anxiety” is a term that has begun to crop up regularly among automakers interested in pursuing the concept of zero- and low-emissions vehicles. Many electric vehicles lack the technology to maintain a charge for more than 100 or so miles, which simply isn’t a realistic figure for many drivers with long commutes or busy lives. However, plug-in hybrids seem to be the answer to the problem for now, and Ford is pursuing this angle head-on with the new 2017 Fusion Energi hybrid.

Though it is a hybrid as opposed to a pure EV, the Fusion Energi’s current iteration has a range of about 550 miles on a full tank and charge. The combination of an electric motor with a gasoline engine allows the hybrid to use both energy sources in tandem to last longer on the road while producing fewer emissions. Now, the upcoming 2017 Fusion Energi gets a 60-mile range boost, upping the Fusion Energi’s range to 610 miles. That’s an EPA rating of 41 mpg in the city, 43 on the highway, and 42 combined. Plug-in hybrids like the Fusion Energi also allow drivers to run on just electric for up to 21 miles, switching to the gas engine when the charge runs out.

2016 Ford Fusion Energi hybrid

Wade Jackson of the Ford Fusion’s marketing department used well-known locations to put the Fusion Energi’s range in perspective, saying, “Fusion Energi — with a full battery and a full tank of gas — can go from San Diego, through Los Angeles and all the way up to San Francisco, and still have up to 110 mile of range remaining.”

The 2017 Fusion Energi hybrid achieved this kind of range through improvements to its software, as well as enhanced regenerative braking, which allows for the generation of electricity when the brakes are applied. The hybrid is preparing to launch right now, with a starting price of $33,995 and three trim levels.

2016 Ford C-Max - regenerative braking

How Regenerative Braking Works in Hybrid Cars

2016 Ford C-Max -  regenerative braking

Hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and electric vehicles have a nifty bit of technology called regenerative braking, which is a kind of braking system that charges electric motors when the brakes are engaged. How regenerative braking works is an interesting process that makes this feature an important part of what makes hybrids and EVs work.

In a normal braking system, the kinetic energy of your moving car and the energy produced when the brake pads rub against each other turns into heat when the brakes are engaged and dissipates, wasted. This is why cars get better gas mileage on the freeway than in the city.

However, in cars with regenerative braking, stop and go city traffic actually becomes an asset. This is because regenerative braking, rather than letting the kinetic energy turn to heat and leave, catches the kinetic energy and feeds it back into the battery to recharge it. This is especially important in PHEVs and EVs, since they need regenerative brakes to last longer on the road. For hybrids, it simply influences the amount of fuel used because less energy is wasted.

Ford Fusion Technology: Autonomous Vehicles Use LiDAR Sensor

2017 hybrid Ford Fusion technology

Ford Fusion Hybrid autonomous vehicle research has made many firsts in the automotive industry, and it’s not stopping any time soon. In new research, autonomous Ford Fusion vehicles have traveled along desert roads with no headlights, thanks to LiDAR sensor technology.

Ford tested their vehicle at Ford Arizona Proving Ground. The development shows that even without cameras, the Ford Fusion technology allows the car to navigate flawlessly around winding roads. It’s ideal to have radar, cameras, and LiDAR to navigate, but LiDAR can function all on its own.

“Thanks to LiDAR, the test cars aren’t relying on the sun shining, nor cameras detecting painted white lines on the asphalt,” said Jim McBride, Ford technical leader for autonomous vehicles. “In fact, LiDAR allows autonomous cars to drive just as well in the dark as they do in the light of day.”

LiDAR technology consists of high-resolution 3D maps, complete with information about the road, road markings, geography, topography and landmarks like signs, buildings, and trees. The vehicle then uses LiDAR pulses to pinpoint itself on the map in real time.

This year, Ford plans to triple its test fleet, bringing the total to 30 self-driving Ford Fusions.

All-New 2016 Ford Fusion V6 Sport Mitigates Pothole Damage

2016 Ford Fusion V6 Sport

Potholes are nasty business. In addition to making us uncomfortable, they can also significantly damage our cars, and in some cases create direct danger by causing a tire blowout.

Though we can try to avoid them, it’s not always that easy. In fact, according to AAA, pothole damage costs U.S. drivers over $3 billion every year. Fortunately, the 2016 Ford Fusion can help drivers mitigate the damage thanks to its advanced computer-controlled shock absorber system.

“The new Fusion V6 Sport substantially reduces the harsh impact potholes often deliver,” says Jason Michener, Ford continuously controlled damping engineering expert. “Our new pothole mitigation technology works by actually detecting potholes and ‘catching’ the car’s wheel before it has a chance to drop all the way into the pothole.”

The advanced suspension system comes standard on the all-new 2016 Ford Fusion V6 Sport model, which is the only midsize sedan in its class to offer this kind of technology.

If you’re tired of potholes, or just want an incredible sporty experience in a midsize car, you’ll definitely want to see what the Ford Fusion Sport is capable of doing at Nick Nicholas Ford!