SUVS have bright fu­ture says Ford

New Zealand LCV - - NEWS | USA – SPORTY SUVS -

FORD PRE­DICTS THAT SUVS WILL AC­COUNT for more than 45 per­cent of the non-pre­mium US re­tail ve­hi­cle in­dus­try in the next five to seven years.

To meet that demand, it plans to add five all­new SUVS to its North Amer­i­can line-up by 2020.

De­mo­graph­ics are driv­ing the an­tic­i­pated trend, says Ford’s vice pres­i­dent, US mar­ket­ing, sales and ser­vice, Mark Lan­eve.

“In the 1990s, SUVS de­fined the un­stop­pable Amer­i­can spirit, and once again, we’re see­ing a util­ity boom take hold with a whole new gen­er­a­tion of cus­tomers.

“Two sets of con­sumers – mil­len­ni­als and baby boomers – are driv­ing this growth, and Ford will be ready with a full port­fo­lio of SUVS to meet their needs.”

Ford says 35 to 44-year-olds buy more mid­size and large SUVS than any other de­mo­graphic – and even more mil­len­ni­als are ex­pected to join the Suv-lov­ing group as they age.

Baby boomers – al­ready buy­ing nearly 30 per­cent of small SUVS – are ex­pected to lean even more heav­ily into SUVS as they age, with the youngest in this group turn­ing 53 this year.

Ford has an­nounced de­tails of its 2018 model year Ex­plorer SUV which fea­tures Sync Con­nect which al­lows own­ers to con­nect with the truck re­motely us­ing Ford­pass to start, lock, un­lock and lo­cate their ve­hi­cle “from al­most any­where.”

The Ex­plorer also has en­hanced ac­tive park as­sist, which uses ul­tra­sonic sen­sors and elec­tric power-as­sisted steer­ing to help driv­ers with par­al­lel and per­pen­dic­u­lar park­ing.

Park-out as­sist helps driv­ers to pull out of par­al­lel park­ing spots; and in­tel­li­gent all-wheel drive with Ter­rain Man­age­ment Sys­tem en­ables im­proved driv­ing ca­pa­bil­ity by send­ing power to which­ever wheels need it.

Ex­plorer buy­ers can also or­der the Safe and Smart Pack­age that in­cludes adap­tive cruise con­trol and col­li­sion warn­ing with brake sup­port. It uses radar to de­tect mov­ing ve­hi­cles di­rectly ahead, and changes cruis­ing speed if nec­es­sary.

Also is the pack­age are blind spot in­for­ma­tion, cross-traf­fic alert, and lane-keep­ing sys­tems. Ex­plor­ers also have auto high-beam head­lights and rain-sens­ing wind­screen wipers.

Buy­ers can choose among five dif­fer­ent Ex­plorer vari­ants and three dif­fer­ent en­gines.

The mo­tors in­clude a 2.3-litre Ecoboost four-cylin­der that delivers max­i­mum power of 209kw at 5500rpm and 420Nm of peak torque at 3000rpm.

Ex­plorer Sport and Plat­inum mod­els run a 3.5-litre twin-turbo Ecoboost V6 that de­vel­ops 272kw at 5500rpm and 475Nm at 3500rpm.

The Chicago-built 2018 Ex­plorer ar­rives in Ford’s US deal­er­ships in the north­ern hemi­sphere au­tumn.

Ford’s 272kw/475nm pow­ers 2017 Ex­plorer Sport SUV which goes on sale in the US later this year.

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