Coming Late 2012 is the 2013 Focus ST – did you say HOT RIDE!

This racing inspired model is going to turn heads for sure. Now, don’t think this is just another wanna be, the development was overseen by Ford’s director of Global Performance Vehicles, Jost Capito. Before coming to Ford, Jost was the head of Red Bull Sauber’s F1 program, headed Porche’s racing efforts and in 1985 won the Paris-Dakar race truck category. So we are thinking this guy knows a little bit about racing.

The Focus ST will come with a 2 liter ecoboost engine putting out 247 horsepower and a 6 speed manual transmission. Also Ford has added high performance brakes and a sport tuned suspension. The exhaust has also been upgraded and tuned to give this racer a throatier sound. Finally, the ST will have lower springs and stiffer shock absorbers which allowed Ford to lower the center of gravity and giving it a meaner stance.

Driving the 2013 Ford Focus ST Video

The look of the ST is different too. It will have a unique black honeycomb grille and a larger rear spoiler for better high speed stability. The colors are unique to ST as well; performance blue, race red, white and tangerine scream, the signature color for ST.

Inside you will have the benefit of adding Recaro race inspired seating and specially designed sport pedals. They even redesigned the rear seating to give more stability to those passengers during vigorous driving maneuvers.

So, stay tuned for more news on Focus ST. If you want to find out when we expect them to start arriving here at Waldorf Ford, check us out online at waldorfford.com or stop by and see us. We are located on Route 301 North in Waldorf, just 15 minutes south of Washington DC.

Shopping for a new vehicle

There comes a point in most everyone’s life that they need to replace their current vehicle. I don’t know about you, but looking for a replacement normally isn’t something I get too excited about. Narrowing down the choices, finding what I want, are just two of the decisions that need to be made. Then it’s – who do I buy it from, negotiating a price, do I want a extended warranty or accessories are more choices. Then its on to financing, do I use my own bank or the dealer, 60 months or 72 months – ARGHH! My head is spinning just thinking about it all.

Our previous blog post “Things to consider when car shopping” had some good pointers on choosing the vehicle, but then comes the question, how do you find it? Some of the obvious places to look are the major auto classified websites like AutoTrader, Edmunds, and Kelley Blue Book. These sites not only list vehicles for sale for lots of dealers in your areas, they also have vehicle and dealer reviews. They can be a big help in locating what you are looking for. You should also look at your local dealers website. You can use Google to find them or if you saw a vehicle they had listed on one of the classified sites, you can access them through there. You can also check your local newspaper and see if they have their website advertised there (I know at Waldorf Ford we have it listed on every page of the advertising catalog we do every other week that goes in the mail and newspaper).

Catalog banner

Catalog banner

Once you have located the vehicle, just submit a quote to continue your journey to a new car purchase. Stay tuned for future articles to help you through the actual purchase of your next vehicle. As always, when you are ready to buy your new car, we hope that Waldorf Ford will be on your short list of places to shop. We are located on Route 301 north in Waldorf MD, just 15 minutes south of Washington DC.

Waldorf Ford Preowned and Ford Certified Preowned vehicles

Did you know that we are a Ford Certified Preowned dealer? Well, we are! We became a FCPO (Ford Certified Pre Owned) dealer because of the great benefits it has for our customers. It allows you to drive home in a late model Ford with peace of mind. Here are some of the benefits of the program:

Every FCPO vehicle goes through a rigorous and thorough 172 point inspection. We check the VIN, make sure all service recalls are performed, run a vehicle history report and perform any necessary scheduled maintenance. While its in the shop, the engine is tested and 35 items under the hood are checked and if necessary brought into spec. Then we take it for a Road test to make sure it runs and drives properly. The exterior and interior are both gone over with a fine toothed comb and any necessary repairs are performed. We check the frame, exhaust, tires, brakes and lots more! When we are done the vehicle is practically new!

The benefits of FCPO don’t end with the 172 point inspection. Every FCPO vehicle comes with peace-of-mind warranty coverage. The comprehensive limited warranty covers more than 500 components for 12 months/12,000 miles (whichever comes first) and the fully transferable powertrain limited warranty covers you for 7 years /100,000 miles. You can also choose to extend the warranty when you purchase your vehicle for extra assurance.

Wait, it doesn’t stop there either. FCPO vehicles also come with 24-hour roadside assistance. Complimentary roadside assistance is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Available services include:

* Towing assistance of up to $100 for warranty and non-warranty problems, including accidents (excludes impound and repossession)
* Travel expense reimbursement of up to $500, for up to 3 days lodging, meals and rental vehicle for travel expenses accrued when the breakdown occurs more than 100 miles from home
* Destination expense assistance of up to $75 for emergency transportation to the immediate destination
* Rental car reimbursement of up to $30 per day for up to 5 days
* Fuel delivery if the vehicle runs out of fuel — up to 2 gallons at no charge
* Flat-tire changes on site
* Jump starts for dead batteries
* Lockout assistance of up to $50 to unlock vehicle doors
* Service throughout the 50 United States and Canada

Not every vehicle has what it takes to become Ford Certified. Each Ford must be less than 6 years old and have less than 80,000 miles on the odometer. Additionally, the vehicle must pass the check of the vehicle history report.

Finally, when you purchase a FCPO you may be eligible for a special interest rate, which can be as low as 1.9% APR.

If you have any questions about the Ford Certified Preowned Program, check us out online at waldorfford.com or stop by and see us. Waldorf Ford is located on Route 301 North in Waldorf, just 15 minutes south of Washington DC.

How many ways can I customize a Mustang?

“Any customer can have a car painted any colour that he wants so long as it is black.” Henry Ford.

The thinking at Ford Motor Company has changed a lot since 1906 when Henry Ford made the above quote. Imagine today telling a potential Mustang owner (or any other Ford model) that they can only get their car in black?

If the amount of customization is any indication, This year promises to be a spectacular year for the classic car. For the V6 model ONLY there are 9 color choices, 8 body kits, 5 different decklids, 8 grilles, 4 hoods, 4 louvers, 8 roof choices, you can get it with or without side scoops, 3 side skirts, 8 different spoilers, and 22 different wheels – YES, 22 WHEELS! That isn’t it either, there are choices for door handles, door trim, fuel doors, headlights, hoodpins, side mirrors and 23 choices for stripes and decals. What is even more amazing is that this is JUST THE EXTERIOR! Finally the icing on the cake is that you still have 3 other trim levels to choose from and customizations for all of those!

So, when you are ready to take the plunge and start shopping for a 2013 Mustang, and you start feeling a little overwhelmed by the choices, stop in and see us at Waldorf Ford. We will be happy to sit down and go through it all with you and help you make your PERFECT Mustang. Waldorf Ford is located on Route 301 North in Waldorf, just 15 minutes south of Washington DC. Call 800-883-1487.

P.S. This is MY Perfect Mustang

My Perfect Mustang

My Perfect Mustang

How do I pick the right Ford truck?

Our sales staff occasionally get asked questions like this, so we thought it might be time to answer it here.

11 Ford Superduty Towing

So, we understand you are out looking for a new truck. With all of the advancements Ford has introduced over the past couple of years, we can understand why it it is so hard to pick. Here are some of the questions we ask to help narrow down the choices.

1. Are you going to do any towing? If yes,
a. Is the trailer a gooseneck, fifth wheel or bumper pull?
b. How much weight will you be towing?
c. How often will you be towing and where?
These questions help us determine which size truck you need – F150, F250, F350 etc.

2. How many people does it need to seat (or pets)?
This one helps determine whether you need a regular cab, Super cab or Crew Cab.

3. Will this be your daily driver or just a tow/haul vehicle?
Or better yet – is fuel economy important

4. Do you drive anywhere you might need 4 Wheel Drive?

5. Will you be carrying anything in the bed?
This will help us determine if you need a full 8 foot bed or if a shorter bed will work.

6. Is this for business use or personal use?

We ask all of these to help you make the right choice when purchasing a truck. Since the introduction of the Ecoboost V6, we are finding more and more that people that previously needed a diesel F250, can now have all of their towing and hauling needs met by the F150.

So, if you find yourself truck shopping, we hope you find these questions helpful. If you would like us to help, just stop by and see us. Waldorf Ford is located on Route 301 North in Waldorf, just 15 minutes south of Washington DC. We are proud to be your local Ford dealer.

The future is closer than you think

Remember when you were a kid watching the Jetsons (ok well maybe some of you don’t) and their flying cars that just took them wherever – or Knight Rider when Kitt took over and just drove around itself? It all seemed so far out there, like it was too far out there to ever be a reality. Well, seems like self-driving cars isn’t that far out there afterall. We might just see the future sooner than we thought.

This all comes up in a presentation by Bill Ford Jr. the great-grandson of car pioneer Henry Ford. His points were made to the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. He said that we could be putting our vehicles on auto pilot within the next 10 years. TEN YEARS! I don’t know whether to be excited or scared!

He believes that it will happen in three stages.

Near-term – In the next five years, he said vehicles will be equipped with car-to-car warning systems and will be able to drive themselves in slow traffic and even park themselves.

Mid-term – Between 2017 and 2025, Ford believes cars will have the technology to reduce the role of the driver markedly, and that many automobiles will be at least semi-autonomous. He also talked of “vehicle platooning” whereby vehicles proceed pretty much bumper to bumper through the use of car-mounted sensors. This will improve safety and save space on roads which will by that time be busier than ever.

Long-term – At some point from 2025, Ford said he expected that many vehicles will be fully autonomous.

Now there is no telling when these will actually roll out in Waldorf, or when they will be available in Ford vehicles. But if the push for technology by Bill Ford Jr and Alan Mulally is any indication of the future, Ford will be on the cutting edge and one of the first to put these into production.

Sources: Dailymail and Digital Trends

Importance of a Maintenance Schedule for your car

There has recently been in the news a study that showed that people are keeping their vehicles for 6 years. Compare this to the 4 years people kept their vehicles just a short 8 years ago. What factored into this change? First, the economy. Even though things are looking better today, unemployment is still high and there is still a lack of confidence in the economy. Second, long loan terms. Now that you can finance a vehicle for 72 months it takes longer to gain equity in your vehicle. So people are hanging on to their cars until their are close to being paid off. Third, vehicle quality. The quality of most vehicles is better than it was. Build them better and they last longer.

underneath vehicle, oil change

You have a role to play in the quality of your vehicle too. If you follow a maintenance schedule, you will help your vehicle retain value longer. Which will help you keep it longer and help you get more for it when its time to trade it in. Here are some of the things that you should put on that schedule:

Oil and Filter Change
Regular oil changes are important because motor oil contains additives that have the ability to neutralize acids. Over time, these additives get used up and stop being effective.
Also, oil can absorb water, dust and combustion byproducts and holds them in suspension. Eventually, the oil gets saturated and can’t absorb any more. When the contaminated oil remains in the engine it can cause corrosion.

Ignition System Maintenance
In today’s vehicles, the bulk of the ignition system maintenance involves spark plugs and wires. Worn or misfiring sparkplugs will cost you fuel economy and emissions performance. Most recommendations are to check the performance of your spark plugs at 30,000 miles and plug wires at 60,000 miles. Your local dealer can check this for you, also refer to your owners manual for manufacturer recommendations.

Cooling System Maintenance
Most modern cooling systems and coolant only require replacement every 100,000 to 200,000 miles. When refilling however, it is important to use only distilled water with a concentrated coolant, in order to prevent corrosion and mineral blockage. Always make sure to properly bleed the system after replacing coolant, as air bubbles can dramatically reduce cooling system ability.

Air Filter/Fuel Filter Replacement
A dirty air or fuel filter can cause poor performance, poor fuel mileage and reduced engine life. Changing your air/fuel filter is easy and rule of thumb is to change the air filter 12 months/12,000 miles or fuel filter 24 months/24,000 miles. For the best information, again check your owner’s manual or ask your service advisor.

Brake Rotor and Pad Replacement:
We typically recommend you check the condition of your brake components anytime you rotate your tires. Make note of any unusual wear. Replace the pads when there is still a little of the pad left, wait any longer and you could damage the rotor. Especially check into those brakes if the brake pedal feels spongy when you use them, you hear unusual grinding or squealing, braking is hard or your brake light is continuously on.

Tire Pressure Check: Maintaining the correct air pressure in your tires will not only help improve fuel economy, it will help your tires wear more evenly. The manufacturers put the recommended tire pressure on a sticker on the door jam. All you need is a simple pressure gauge and you can check it yourself.

Tire Rotation: Our rule is to rotate the tires whenever you change the oil. This will help your tires last longer, saving you money in the long run.

Transmission Fluid Change: Most newer vehicles don’t require or recommend a transmission fluid change. It is a sealed system that has the same fluid in it for the life of the transmission. If you have an older vehicle the standard is to change the transmission fluid and filter at 40,000 miles. I will go to our old fall back and recommend if you have any questions, refer to your manufacturer’s owners manual or ask your service advisor for help.

Car Wash: The exterior of your car will not only look better, it will last longer if you wash your car regularly. Road grime and winter road treatments are hard on your vehicle, corroding whatever it touches. So give your car a good scrub – you will feel better once you do!

That about covers everything. Servicing your vehicle properly will help keep it running better for you and help you get more for it when you decide to replace it down the road. If you have any questions about the maintenance of your vehicle, feel free to contact one of our service advisors at Waldorf Ford. We are conveniently located on Route 301 North in Waldorf, just 15 minutes south of Washington DC.

Source: Carsdirect

Things to consider when car shopping

We came across a great article on The Auto Channel and thought they had some pretty great points.

1 – Determine your PRACTICAL NEEDS for a new vehicle;

How will you be using your new car? How many passengers will you be carrying? What type of topography will you be driving on? How far will you be driving each week? Will your new car be too tall to fit into your garage? Will your 6’5” son be able to sit in the back seat? Do you need to haul lots of luggage or recreational gear? Will you be in a car pool? ETC.

2 – Determine your BUDGET and STICK TO IT

Remember the cost of the vehicle is just one of your monthly costs. Fuel, Maintenance, Depreciation, End Value, Insurance, Repairs are just a few of the additional costs of operating a car.

3 – Determine your EMOTIONAL NEEDS, which car or truck really makes you happy when you drive it.

Today’s cars and trucks are made really well and with the proper care will remain serviceable almost forever, the average age a consumer owns their car has risen to over 8 years…so if you hate it you will have a lot of disagreeable moments over the next decade…so you better make sure you are really happy with your choice.

4 – Test Drive, Test Drive, Test Drive, Test Drive

Buying your next vehicle should not just be a couple of hour task but should take place only after careful considerations and research. And after investing your time to do steps 1,2 and 3, and then coming up with your short list of potentials, DON’T BLOW IT! Spend your next two weekends driving each car or truck on your short list.

4A. Do not test drive with your spouse or partner

Do it alone. Then compare notes about each car, by being alone no matter what you are offered or pressured to do, you have a built in excuse not to buy until you talk to your significant other, make sure you are absolutely 100% sure you can have a long term relationship with this vehicle!

TEST DRIVE WITHOUT A TIME LIMIT

Take your Test Drives not for 10 minutes but for hours, take your potential purchases to the same places you will be driving each day, see how it parks in your regular parking lot… see how it handles a trip to the supermarket, see how it handles the bumpy roads on your shortcuts, see how it does in the rain (or snow and ice), see how it does in stop and go traffic, because the decision you make will either make you happy or miserable forever, and aren’t you worth the time to find out?

The team here at Waldorf Ford agrees with all of these points, with the exception of maybe one. We will say, we would rather have you test drive with your significant other, simply because if you do decide to purchase while you are here, the process will be easier. We will not pressure you or hassle you into buying if you are not ready. However if you feel more comfortable without your other half, then we are happy to help you by answering any and all questions and by taking you on a test drive. We want satisfied customers before, during and after the sale.

When you are ready to buy your new car, we hope that Waldorf Ford will be on your short list of places to shop. We are located on Route 301 north in Waldorf MD, just 15 minutes south of Washington DC.

Black Friday Car Deals in Waldorf!

Yes, we know. Black Friday isn’t traditionally a “car sales” day. Waldorf Ford, Waldorf Dodge and Waldorf Ford Preowned Center have set out to change that! Now we haven’t taken it as far as Walmart, Target, HH Gregg etc by opening at midnight, but we will open earlier than usual – 7:30am – and we will have some AWESOME car deals as well as some great giveaways with each purchase.

We are so excited about it that we made a video!

So when you are out and about in Waldorf, Maryland on Black Friday, stop in and see us at Waldorf Ford, Waldorf Dodge and Waldorf Ford Preowned Center. We are located on Route 301 North, just 15 minutes south of Washington DC.