4 Wheel & Off Road - - DRIVELINES -

IN­DUS­TRY SOURCES RE­PORT Ge­trag is devel­op­ing a man­ual trans­mis­sion for the up­com­ing Ford Bronco that could have as many as seven speeds. Whether that means it will have an ul­tralow First for crawl­ing or a more high­way- (and emis­sions-) friendly over­drive is un­clear. Au­toweek pointed out in its story about the trans­mis­sion that Ford Ex­ec­u­tive VP Jim Far­ley said Ford wants “to give peo­ple true off-road ve­hi­cles that are com­fort­able at higher speeds, on two-track trails, and do well in deep sand on the beach,” not nec­es­sar­ily bet­ter the Wran­gler Rubicon in the rocks.

SUP­PLI­ERS TALK­ING WITH Au­to­mo­tive News say the new Ram mid­size pickup will be a tra­di­tional body-on-frame truck, not a Fiat-based uni­body, and it will be built in the same Toledo plant as the up­com­ing Wran­gler-based pickup. There was no word on how much, if any, com­po­nen­try the Jeep and Ram trucks might share.

FORD IS IS­SU­ING A RE­CALL for ap­prox­i­mately 2 mil­lion se­lect 2015-2018 Ford F-150 reg­u­lar cab and Su­perCrew ve­hi­cles in North Amer­ica for driver and front pas­sen­ger seat belt pre­ten­sion­ers. Ford has found that some front seat belt pre­ten­sion­ers can gen­er­ate ex­ces­sive sparks when they de­ploy. When suf­fi­cient sparks are present, gases ex­hausted in­side the lower por­tion of the B-pil­lar by the pre­ten­sion­ers may ig­nite, caus­ing com­po­nents be­hind the B-pil­lar, such as in­su­la­tion and car­pet, to catch fire. Ford says it is aware of 17 re­ports of smoke or fire in the U.S., but no ac­ci­dents or in­juries re­sulted.

INFO ABOUT FORD’S RE­VISED Su­per Duty, ex­pected in 2019 as a 2020 model, is leak­ing to the pub­lic. A re­port from SEMA in­di­cated the truck will be facelifted to look like the cur­rent F-150 and will likely get a new, 7.0L V-8 to re­place the 6.8L V-10.

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