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The Mercury Cars Guide : June 20th 2009
2— Classifieds 62 300 400 • carsguide.com.au Ford focuses on the future in fuel ‘feud’ Thegloves are off in the fueleconomy battle between the big Aussie sixes. Neil McDonaldreports F ORD is expected to de- cide by the end of next month on its future fuel- saving technologies for its six-cylinder Falcon and Territory to go head-to-head against the Holden Commodore and Toyota Aurion. With GM-Holden tipped to show off new fuel economy tricks in this year’s Commodore update, the pressure is on Ford to reply with its own strategies. Ford president and chief execu- tive Marin Burela says the com- pany will make a decision on its technology within two months. ‘‘We will get to a power-train decision by the end of July,’’ he says. ‘‘If we go beyond that we will not be able to get the power-train strategy deployed in time to meet the requirements that we need to meet internally, as well as those we need to meet to satisfy the Australian market. ‘‘Derrick Kuzak, the global prod- uct development head for Ford, is personally involved in working with us to help us get to the best solution. That shows you the level of focus that the Ford Motor Co is applying to make sure we get this right.’’ With fleets and governments identifying fuel economy among the key drivers in purchasing decisions, Burela is keen to make sure the Falcon keeps pace with consumer demands. More than 70 per cent of all Falcons and Com- modores are bought by fleets. Burela says there is still room for fuel economy improvements in the Falcon’s in-line six-cylinder engine, which cracks 9.9 litres/ 100km combined for the optional six-speed automatic XT sedan and FG adds a touch of class THE sales may not reflect it in overall terms, but the FG Falcon is attracting a better class of buyer. The previous model Falcon XT represented 60 per cent of sales, with XR 25 per cent to 30 per cent, and the luxury level making up the rest. With the FG the mix has become richer and more prof- itable. The XR series cars make up 50 per cent of sales, with G-Series cars about 43 per cent of the total mix, and the XT just 4.5 per cent of sales. Ford’s Marin Burela says the FG has helped reduce the average age of Falcon buyers, which used to be about 55. This has come down to between 35 and 45, because of the active push of the XR sports models and acceptance of the upper luxury G-Series cars. 10.5 litres/100km for the five-speed automatic model. The I6 engine remains a part of the Falcon and Territory’s future, even though Ford is looking at turbo-diesel engines and a range of eco-saving technologies such as stop-start and dual-clutch trans- missions. Ford has not yet approached the Federal Government for access to its Green Car Fund to help fast- track these new technologies. ‘‘We don’t want to go to the Government every five minutes asking for their support or engage- ment on things that we’re not ready to make a statement on,’’ Burela says. ‘‘I want to make sure that once we’re ready to move forward with our power-train strategy that it’s a very cohesive, very comprehen- sive and very thought-out plan.’’ RELAUNCH: The 2008 Ford Mondeo wagon. Mondeo steps up to the plate NEIL McDONALD I N a bold tactic, Ford has sig- naled that it will pitch its new Mondeo wagon against the brawnier and more powerful Holden Sportwagon. Ford Australia also says it will use the wagon’s arrival in August to help relaunch the slow-selling Mondeo brand locally. Despite the fact that the Sportwa- gon eclipses the four-cylinder Mon- deo on the cylinder count with a choice of V6 and V8 powertrains as well as sporty and luxury models, Ford president Marin Burela be- lieves the wagon ‘‘will be a real competitor for the Sportwagon’’. ‘‘Let’s take our first shot across the bow with the Mondeo wagon, which is a very classy car in terms of package, performance, fuel economy and styling,’’ he says. ‘‘We think it will be a real surprise and delight to the market.’’ Ford is expecting big things from fleet and private buyers for its mid- sizer as it broadens the choice between the sedan, hatch and wagon. Both the Mondeo sedan and hatch were launched in late 2007 but sales have never fired against the heavy- hitting Toyota Camry, Mazda6, Hon- da Accord Euro and Subaru Liberty. Last year more than 85,000 buyers bought mid-size cars but Ford’s slice was just 4872 Mondeos. Unlike the Japanese makes though, the Mon- deo’s ace is a 2.0-litre turbo diesel mated to a six-speed automatic. Burela believes a refocused and more aggressive Mondeo marketing push will lift sales. ‘‘Even a 10 per cent share, which is around 8000, may not seem a lot but it’s important,’’ he says. However, Burela recognises the segment is extremely competitive with 27 players in the under $80,000 bracket. Even with all eyes on the Mondeo over the next few months, Burela still believes there is a place for the Falcon wagon in the line-up. Burela says the bigger Falcon wagon remains popular with fleets because of its packaging and room. He says Ford is cautious over how it moves forward with itswagonline- up, particularly in relation to the future of the larger load lugger. ‘‘The last thing I want to do is invest our scarce resources where we don’t need to invest them,’’ he says. ‘‘We are just going to take our time and get the Mondeo wagon out there and then once we’ve got that settled down we’ll look at the next steps.’’ Despite Ford’s pitch at the Sport- wagon, the Holden still wins the space race. The Sportwagon has 895 COMPETITION: The Mondeo goes up against Holden’s Sportswagon. ‘ 0 the wagon... is very classy in terms of performance and package litres of luggage room with the rear seats up and 2000 litres of space with the seats folded. ’ By comparison the Mondeo has 542 litres of luggage room, growing to 1733 litres with the rear seats folded. The venerable Falcon wagon eclipses both, with 1260 litres of luggage space and a huge 2584 litres when the rear seats are folded flat. 06 Grand Carnival Wagon 06 Nissan X-Trail 4WD Wagon 04 Toyota Hilux Motorhome • Perfect family wagon • 3.8L V6 auto • Jam packed with features • Dual zone air cond • Antilock brakes • Cruise ctrl • Airbags • CD/radio • Keyless entry + immob • Superior comfort and style • Wnty SEATS 8 Just 27,990 04 Kia Rio LS Hatch $ SUNROOF • Just traded • Approx 59,000 kms • 5 spd man • Airbag • C/lock • Immob • Air cond • Spotless white duco • 1 year warranty + 1 year roadside assist • 1 owner 1 YEAR WARRANTY PLUS 1 YEAR ROADSIDE ASSIST Just 8,990 $ BALANCE OF FACTORY WARRANTY Just $ Cnr Harrington and Bathurst Streets, Hobart. Ph 6237 1199 autorent.com.au Vehicle for illustration purposes only. Prices don’t include the 3% Government Stamp Duty and $23 transfer fee. 17,990 TRADE-INS WELCOME Autos from $ 12,690 Manuals from $ 10,790 • ST-S Model with alloys and HUGE sunroof • Compact 4WD with 2WD mode for even better fuel consumption • Perfect vehicle for everyone – auto, ABS, cruise ctrl, immob, remote keyless entry, air cond, pwr wind • Wnty From $ 19,590 07 Toyota Corolla Hatch • Brilliant small auto • Current model • 1.8 L • Air cond • ABS • Keyless entry + immob • CD/MP3 • Airbags • Pwr wind (front) • Balance of factory wnty AUTO • Superbly equipped 2 berth auto 2.7L EFI engine • Spacious living area with full height shower and toilet • Fridge/freezer, microwave • Gas cooktop and grille • Solar panel that maintains the auxiliary batter • Veh air cond + pwr steer • Sunroof • Wnty Just $49,990 06 Accent Sedans • Perfect size • Roomy boot • 1.6L 4cyl autos and 5 spd manuals • Antilock brakes • Air cond • CD • Remote keyless entry + immob • Pwr wind • Beautiful embience • Balance of factory Warranty Saturday, June 20, 2009 2004174-25 SAT& OPEN 9-5 SUN
June 13th 2009
June 27th 2009