Ferrari 660HP All-Wheel Drive Four-Seater Supercar

We've already had our first look at the all-new Ferrari FF, or as one Carscoop commenter put it, the... hunchback of Notre Maranello, but the Italian firm released additional photography of its flagship GT model today. Basically, we get one revealing studio shot of an FF finished in a grey color and three images of a prototype development mule clad in camouflage while testing out the four-wheel-drive system over the snow-covered roads of Sweden and Finland.

The new FF replaces the 612 Scaglietti as Ferrari's most practical model boasting seating and luggage space for four. At the heart of the supercar is a 6.3-liter V12 powerhouse pushing out 660-ponies linked to an F1-style dual-clutch transmission. In addition to being practical and powerful, the FF is also the first production Ferrari to come with an all-wheel drive system. According to the Italians, the FF can hit 100km/h (62 mph) in 3.7 seconds and tops out at 335 km/h or 208-mph. For more details as well as the first video of the car, check out our previous post by clicking here.


Fords new Models to get Unique Designs and Different Technology

According to an Automotive News report, future Lincoln vehicles will be heavily differentiated from their Ford counterparts, as the two brands will no longer share design cues and technology.

“The strategy isn't just new products, but full differentiation from the Ford brand in not only design, but in technology”, said Derrick Kuzak, Ford's group vice president of global product development, on the sidelines of the 2011 Detroit Auto Show.

Mr. Kuzak also said that Ford would achieve this by modifying the existing platforms in order to create unique Lincoln products. That could be the case with Ford’s power steering or chassis electronic control, for example.

“Imagine adding suspension control to that and what would happen to the platform if you did that on Lincoln only”, he added.

Scott Tobin, Lincoln's director of product development, told Automotive News that future Lincoln products will have newly designed interiors, an extended V6 engine line-up and other features, such as paddle shifters and all-wheel drive systems, with no rear-wheel drive variants in the works.

Lincoln also plans to reorganize its dealer network by eliminating at least 200 franchises in the top 130 U.S. markets. Furthermore, remaining dealers must agree to thoroughly upgrade their facilities and implement other changes.


Ford Displays 2012 Focus Hatchbacks

Three personalized Focus models will also be on display at Ford's 2010 Los Auto Show stand, giving visitors an idea of how they could improve their stock rides. The cars received a makeover consisting mostly of visual enhancements from Ford Vehicle Personalization, FSWerks and 3dCarbon.

Developed by Ford Vehicle Personalization, the first Focus showcases what can be done with Ford Custom Accessories. Boasting a tri-coat white paint, the hatch received an extensive body kit with modified front and rear bumpers, the latter with integrated diffuser, plus lowered side skirts and a roof spoiler. To achieve a striking contrast, designers applied Caribbean Blue accents to many body parts, such as the headlamps, mirrors, wheels and doors.

Inside, the color theme switches to a black and white contrast, used on the leather seats, steering wheel and center stack. Bespoke scuff plates and aqua accent lighting complete the composition.

Next up is the FSWerks 2012 Ford Focus. In this case, modifications also include performance parts, like the stainless steel exhaust, which is said to maximize engine output, though no figures have been released yet. Gone is the stock suspension, too, replaced with an H&R Springs coil-over kit, cutting ride-height by a whopping 3 inches (7.62 centimeters).

Other treats include an FSWerks cold air intake, engine cover and 19-inch DPE R16 wheels, wrapped around Continental ExtremeContact tires. There's also a 3dCarbon roof wing and, under the sheetmetal, a front stress bar.

Last but not least, we have 3dCarbon's take on the Focus. The California-based tuner envisioned a "sinister look" for the car, or so it says, achieved by applying 3M's Ventureshield Paint Protection film foil wrap on the black body panels, complemented with smoked-out windows.

The hood received a glossy black finish, while the car rides on 20-inch Series KM650-KMC wheels, accented with red pinstripes. The 3dCarbon Focus also gets H&R sport and a cat-back exhaust.


Ford Focus Race Car Concept

Making its world premiere in LA today is the Focus Race Car Concept that will form the base for the Blue Oval's next global touring race car. Powered by a 2.0-liter EcoBoost turbocharged four-cylinder engine, the new racing model will get its first shot on the tarmac at the 2011 British Touring Car Championship.

For the creation of the Focus racer, Ford collaborated with various race teams from around the world in order to make sure that the new car meets rules governing circuit racing in the United States and beyond..

"This teamwork has resulted in a global racing platform using a common Focus body and a safety cage built to FIA regulations – a competitive platform that can be tailored for regional competition, based on different rules," said Jost Capito, director of Global Performance Vehicles and Motorsport Business Development.

"By leveraging our collective experience and Ford technology worldwide, this approach parallels our global dedication to the Focus production car and specifically its exciting performance derivative, the new Focus ST, to deliver a competitive race car that can be campaigned around the world."

Based on the new Focus, the Race Car Concept has been upgraded with AST performance dampers, sport sway bars provided by Ford Racing and enormous, 320 mm front brakes, for extreme stopping power. Hoosier race tires wrap around the 18-inch Anthracite alloy wheels.

Inside, there's a roll cage and a Recaro racing seat with a six-point safety harness, alongside a fire suppression system. The AIM MXL Pista dashboard has a digital layout and features, among other data, a tachometer, rev counter and gear position indicator.

Ford is keen to benefit as much as possible from the teams' racing experience, so it's going to provide them full support, including data, advanced engineering tools and parts. The idea is that, in a few years time, new race-inspired technologies should make the transition to street models, as was the case with the 2012 Mustang Boss 302.


NHTSA Probes 2010 Ford

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration [NHTSA] today announced that it has opened a preliminary investigation to assess a possible safety concern on certain 2010 Ford Fusion models, following four complaints that allege wheel stud fractures.

Three of the four Fusion’s exhibiting the claimed defect belong to the same 22-vehicle strong fleet and were assigned to different drivers who experienced the alleged flaw on three different occasions. The safety agency said at least one complaint alleges wheel stud fractures on multiple wheels.

All four cars clocked up between 5,000 and 11,000 miles and were originally fitted with steel wheels and decorative wheel covers. According to the report, each wheel was attached using five lug nuts and wheel studs and has never been serviced prior to the incidents.

The agency said the wheel stud fractures could potentially result in wheel separation and loss of vehicle control.

The probe covers an estimated 281,250 vehicles from the 2010 model year.


Ford Escape and Kuga SUVs

These are the first official photos of Ford's Detroit Show-bound Vertrek concept study, which previews a common replacement for the European market Kuga crossover and the North American Escape SUV.

The compact-sized model is based on the underpinnings of the Focus hatch and is powered by Ford's 1.6-liter turbocharged EcoBoost petrol engine featuring start and stop technology for improved fuel efficiency.

The production model, which could hit the market as early as 2012, will most likely lose many of the concept's cool features such as the panoramic glass roof, carbon fiber aero-pack and of course, the purely conceptual interior, but will retain the basic shape of the concept.


New Ford Focus Electric

Ford is poised to take on the Nissan Leaf EV and to a lesser extent, the more technologically advanced Chevrolet Volt extended range EV with the all-new Focus Electric that was revealed today in production guise.

The Dearborn company's first-ever all-electric passenger car is based on the latest generation of the Focus five-door hatchback. Hiding behind the very Aston Martin-like grille is an electric drivetrain comprising of an electric motor capable of 123 HP and 181 lb-ft of torque, and a single-speed transmission.

Energy is provided by a lithium-ion battery system, which has engineered by Ford in cooperation with supplier LG Chem. Ford says that with the optional wall-mounted 240-volt charge station, the batteries can be charged in three to four hours, or about half the time of the Nissan Leaf. The company did not say how long it will take to charge the batteries with the standard 120-volt convenience cord that comes with the vehicle.

The all-electric Focus is capable of reaching speeds of up 84 mph (136km/h). Ford did not give out an official number on the range, but the firm's execs have previously stated that the EV will be able to cover a distance of around 100 miles or 160km.

The Focus Electric will also get several new features and technologies including a unique version of the MyFord Touch driver connect system developed especially for electric vehicles, a new value charging feature powered by Microsoft and a smartphone app called MyFord Mobile that helps plug-in owners control their vehicles remotely.

The North American variant of the Focus Electric will be built at Ford’s Michigan Assembly Plant in Wayne, Michigan, with sales to commence at the end of 2011. Ford said that for European markets, a decision on where the Focus Electric will be built is currently being finalized, but sales are scheduled to start before 2013.


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