NewsArts & Culture / December 7, 2018

Updated Edge, F-150 Diesel Help Move Ford Away From Cars

Ford recently announced it is planning to discontinue virtually all of its cars, save the iconic Mustang. And, a reasons it is planning that move are excellent car-based crossovers like the Escape, Explorer, and Edge.Ford, auto, F-150, Ford Edge2018-12-07T00:00:00-05:00
Updated Edge, F-150 Diesel Help Move Ford Away From Cars

Ford recently announced it is planning to discontinue virtually all of its cars, save the iconic Mustang.  And, a reasons it is planning that move are excellent car-based crossovers like the Escape, Explorer, and Edge – vehicles that sell far better than their sedan siblings.  Given the Edge’s strong position in Ford’s future line-up, it made sense to conjure some updates for 2019.  We sampled the high-luxe Titanium edition.

Titanium Class Style

You’ll have to look close to see updates from the exterior, but a trained eye will spot a revised grille outline and updated facia with standard LED front lighting.  Titanium editions get chrome grille slats and satin silver bumper accents.  Go full in on the 20-inch alloys.  There was no reason to alter the Edge’s overall shape with raked rear window and muscular bodylines, so nobody did.  Around back, a revised lower bumper with diffuser look and twin exhaust outlets completes the package.

There’s plenty to like inside where nothing feels cheap.  Heated and cooled front seats, heated rear seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, and a dual-pane moonroof keep everybody temperate.  They’ll also appreciate thumping B&O audio, wireless phone charging, Wi-Fi, and navigation.  It’s all controlled via touchscreen with easy-to-understand icons or voice.  Apple CarPlay and Alexa compatibility add convenience – as does a new rotary gear selector. 

Moving into the new year, there’s plenty of standard safety tech:  Forward collision warning with pedestrian detection and brake intervention, blind spot warning, and rear cross path detection.  Adaptive cruise with lane-centering steering and stop-and-go capability challenges top luxury cars.  Automated parallel parking keeps those bumpers shiny.

Turbo Power

One can put the F-150’s 2.7-liter 335 horsepower turbocharged V6 engine under the Edge’s hood, but that’s totally unnecessary as the base engine is now a 2.0-liter turbo-four kicking out 250 horsepower and 275 lb.-ft. of torque.  That’s plenty to move a mid-size crossover, whether front-drive or optionally propelled by all four corners.  A new eight-speed automatic transmission and auto stop/start enable fuel economy ratings of 19/26-MPG city/highway. 

Either engine produces plenty of power, but it would be great if the Edge offered better fuel economy.  It’s all a balance of power vs. economy, but an optional four-cylinder with about 170 horsepower would put MPGs over 30.  That would be nice for those with softer wallets.  As it is, the throttle can be a bit touchy with the base engine, but you get used to it quickly.  Beyond the powertrain, the Edge is a pretty nice drive.  The suspension provides a comfortable ride, but maintains composure when roads bound and weave. 

Time will tell if dropping cars is a smart idea, but nobody will reject the wisdom of putting money into the 2019 Edge to make it even better.  A comfy interior, spirited powertrain, and advanced safety tech keep it top of class.  A base price of $29,995, or $44,800 all-in, puts it against the Subaru Outback, Hyundai Santa Fe, Jeep Cherokee, GMC Acadia, Nissan Murano, and upcoming Chevy Blazer.

2018 Ford F-150 Diesel Channels Its Inner Loretta Lynn

Loretta Lynn once sang, “If you’re looking at me, you’re looking at country.”  And, that she is, although her new album “Wouldn’t It Be Great” proves through crafted lyrics and expert musicianship that the 86-year-old is also a pretty sophisticated songwriter and all-around classy lady.  She’s been at this nearly 60 years and all of the other wanna-be divas have yet to master her authenticity and take her down.  If she were personified as an automobile, the 2018 Ford F-150 Platinum diesel may be her match.

Glammed-up Pick-up

It may be glammed up in Platinum trim, but when you’re looking at the F-150, you’re looking at a truck that’s been topping the sales charts longer than Loretta’s has been throwing down hits.  And, like her, it has continually evolved to stay atop of trends.  Styling is consistent, but LED headlamps flank the bold chrome grille, which glistens between C-shaped signature running lamps.  Dark Magma Red metallic paint, power-folding mirrors, and 20-inch wheels further set it on its stage while LED bed lights add convenience.  All that and the truck employs military grade aluminum body panels that save 700 lbs.  Sophisticated.

Opening the door, and stepping up the power-deployed running board, leaves you no less elevated than entering Loretta’s luxury coach.  Dark Marsala red leather and real black wood trim make beautiful first impressions – as do heated/cooled front seats, heated rear seats, and a heated steering wheel.  Crank up the sweet B&O audio system, power open the twin panel moonroof, and press another button to whisk open the rear window for a relaxing drive.  A long cab provides stretch-out rear legroom.

Dig deeper to find an array of technology.  Navigation, power pedals, automatic parallel parking assist, and in-dash trailer brake controller are swell.  There’s also a knob on the dash for Ford’s Pro Trailer Backup Assist, which allows drivers to dial trailers wherever they want.  Keeping everybody safe are blind spot warning, adaptive cruise, forward crash mitigation, lane keep assist, rear cross path detection, and 360-degree camera systems. 

Low Down Diesel Torque

You might expect the truck to rattle like a tour bus, but it does not.  The 3.0-liter V6 turbo-diesel quietly pumps out 250 horsepower and 440 lb.-ft. of torque.  As is typical with diesels, the engine does not produce outrageous amounts of horsepower, but churns out mega torque for getting heaving loads moving.  In fact, it will pull up to 13,200 lbs., or about three family sedans.  All of that torque hits the streets through a new 10-speed automatic transmission and four-wheel-drive.  I could live without auto stop/start, but it contributes to fuel economy ratings of 16/22-MPG city/highway.

The truck comes to any venue ready to please crowds.  It’s pre-wired for trailers with a hitch installed beneath.  Spray-in bedliner and deployable step hidden in the tailgate make loading easier.  There’s even a gated bed extender that flips over to the tailgate.  Look underneath to see skid plates that protect soft bits.  Hook up and go!

If you want to see a legendary performer show pretenders how it’s done, go see Loretta in concert.  And, if you want to experience a legendary pickup defend its place in the spotlight, go drive the F-150 Platinum diesel.  It’s a vehicle that hard-working gents and classy ladies can both appreciate – whether pulling heavy loads or pulling up to The Ryman.  That’s provided they can lay out $70,375 fully booked.  Competitors include the Ram Longhorn, Chevy Silverado High Country, GMC Sierra Denali, and Nissan Titan XD with the Cummins diesel.

Storm Forward!

Send comments to Casey at AutoCasey@aol.com; follow him on YouTube @AutoCasey.

 

2019 Ford Edge Titanium

  • Five-passenger, FWD Crossover
  • Powertrain: 2.0-liter T4, 8-spd auto trans
  • Output:  250hp/275 lb.-ft. torque
  • Suspension f/r: Ind/Ind
  • Wheels f/r: 20”/20” alloy
  • Brakes f/r: disc/disc
  • Must-have features: Safety, Performance
  • Fuel economy: 19/26 mpg city/hwy
  • Assembly: Oakville, Ontario
  • Base/As-tested price: $29,995/$44,890

 

2018 Ford F-150 Platinum

  • Five-passenger, 4WD Pickup
  • Powertrain: 3.0-liter turbo-diesel V6, 10-spd auto trans
  • Output:  250hp/440 lb.-ft. torque
  • Suspension f/r: Ind/Solid axle
  • Wheels f/r: 20”/20” alloy
  • Brakes f/r: disc/disc
  • Must-have features: Luxury, Performance
  • Fuel economy: 16/22 mpg city/hwy
  • Assembly: Dearborn, MI
  • Base/As-tested price: $27,705/$70,375

 

 

 

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