4 Wheel & Off Road - - DRIVELINES -

• IN FORD’S PLANS RE­PORT, the au­tomaker noted that the F-150 has not only gained mar­ket share since the truck’s high-alu­minum-con­tent re­design in 2014 but also that its trans­ac­tion prices are up $6,700 per ve­hi­cle, due largely to the pop­u­lar­ity of pre­mium mod­els like the Plat­inum and King Ranch. “Ford’s F-Se­ries rev­enues alone are higher than rev­enues of For­tune 500 icons such as Face­book, Coca Cola, and Nike,” says Ford. Wow!

•WE MAT­TER! A RE­PORT THAT SEMA for­warded from the U.S. De­part­ment of Com­merce says the out­door re­cre­ation in­dus­try’s an­nual gross out­put is around $673 bil­lion. This rep­re­sents 2 per­cent of the na­tion’s to­tal gross do­mes­tic prod­uct (GDP) and sur­passes other sec­tors, such as agri­cul­ture, petroleum and coal, and com­puter and elec­tronic prod­ucts. Out­door re­cre­ation cov­ers a va­ri­ety of ac­tiv­i­ties, from off-road­ing to bik­ing, boat­ing, hik­ing, and hunt­ing. Mo­tor­ized ve­hi­cles were the largest ac­tiv­ity within the sur­vey of 2016 data, ac­count­ing for $59.4 bil­lion of gross out­put. The num­bers cor­re­late to mil­lions of Amer­i­can jobs.

• FIAT CHRYSLER IS VOL­UN­TAR­ILY re­call­ing an es­ti­mated

180,975 trucks in the U.S. to help pre­vent oc­cu­pants from in­ad­ver­tently shift­ing their ve­hi­cles out of Park. FCA has found the brake trans­mis­sion shift in­ter­lock may over­heat on cer­tain ve­hi­cles equipped with steer­ing-col­umn shift levers. This con­di­tion has been linked to pro­tracted brake-pedal ap­pli­ca­tion while ve­hi­cles idle in Park. If over­heat­ing oc­curs, a ve­hi­cle’s shifter may be repo­si­tioned with­out brake-pedal ap­pli­ca­tion or the pres­ence of a key in the ig­ni­tion. Af­fected are cer­tain 2017-2018 Ram 2500 and 3500 pick­ups; cer­tain 2017

2018 Ram 3500, 4500, and

5500 chas­sis cabs; and 2016

2017 Ram 3500 chas­sis cabs with a GVWR of less than 10,000 pounds. Cer­tain 2017-2018 Ram

1500 pick­ups are also in­cluded in the re­call, but heavy-duty trucks rep­re­sent the ma­jor­ity of af­fected ve­hi­cles.

BOLLINGER MO­TORS, WHICH is de­vel­op­ing the B1 all-elec­tric, all-wheel-drive sport/util­ity truck we told you about in pre­vi­ous is­sues, has en­tered into an agree­ment with Op­ti­mal, Inc., a Detroit-area engi­neer­ing firm, to help bring the B1 to pro­duc­tion. Op­ti­mal’s ex­pe­ri­ence in elec­tric ve­hi­cle de­sign, com­puter-aided engi­neer­ing, and other as­pects of ve­hi­cle op­ti­miza­tion will take the B1 “to the next level of engi­neer­ing ex­cel­lence,” says Bollinger, and help the com­pany reach its goal of start­ing pro­duc­tion in late 2019.

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