Evolution of Ford Vehicle Technology – Guest Blogger Clarence Ball

clarence ball

Editor’s Note: Welcome our guest blogger Clarence Ball!  He is a Sales Consultant here at Waldorf Ford, located in Waldorf, Maryland. He has been with us for since 2001, that’s 12 years to be exact!  He is originally from Waldorf, Maryland and attended the College of Southern Maryland.  Mr. Ball is very active in his community.  From volunteering at local charity events to being visible at all our events here at Waldorf Ford, I am sure you have met him!  His favorite part of the job is making sure his customers are completely satisfied!  He also enjoys learning & developing his product knowledge base as you will see in this blog!  Clarence’s automotive knowledge is expansive so if you have any questions ask for him!

It seems like it was just yesterday when in 2001 Ford Motor Company introduced The Personal Safety System and made it standard on most vehicles.  At the time, this innovative system was a tool that recognized the weight of a passenger, how close they were to airbags, the speed of a vehicle, and also determined the amount of pressure need for each front passenger.  Today, along with the Personal Safety System Ford has added standard side curtain airbags and rear inflatable seat belts in the Explorer and Flex.  Even now the Ford Fiesta offers drivers a knee air bag!

In 2002, reverse sensing and flip down video cassette players were introduced when the Expedition came out.  Since video cassette players, Ford has evolved to flip down DVDs to DVDs in headrests with USB connections.  Then there came navigation systems.  Navigation systems first started with a small screen with seven discs for each region of the United States, now they are large MyFord Touch screens running off a small SD card. That means saving space!  The vehicles still offer the reverse sensing system but now have available rear view cameras which show you backing into a parking space, garage, or even assist in backing up a boat or trailer!  Our trucks and vans now offer a built in trailer brake controller.  This controls the braking of your trailer which is conveniently displayed on your instrument panel and can also STOP your loaded trailer faster than your conventional aftermarket brake controllers!

In 2007, technology in Ford vehicles really took a big leap forward with the introduction of SYNC.  SYNC is an operating system designed by Microsoft that debuted in 2007.

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sync3In the first version, it was just Bluetooth for your phone and music connectivity for your line in or USB devices such as IPODs.    The latest generation of SYNC on 2010 models and newer, feature SYNC Services which has a turn by turn navigation, Vehicle Health Report (gives you the health of your vehicle like when it is time for your oil change), and 911 Assist.  All can be activated on the http://www.syncmyride.com website.

Next jump was the introduction of Adaptive Cruise control in some of our vehicles.  This feature is great for stop and go traffic.  It can measure the distance between you and the car in front of you.  For instance, if the vehicle in front slows down, your vehicle maintains the same distance or gap between the two vehicles.  2011-ford-edge-adaptive-cruise-controlSome of the other great advances are BLIS and Active Park Assist.  The Blind Spot Information System automatically senses vehicles in your blind spot.  It uses an amber indicator that comes on in the corner of your side view mirrors.  Another great feature is the collision warning with brake assist.  This is available on some models.  This feature senses cars in front and gives you a warning if you need to brake quickly.  It actually precharges your brakes so you can stop quicker than without this system.

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Active Park Assist is another great feature.  It can parallel park your car for you once a space is found.

So possibly, one day in the future you might see people with a car that can drive for them.  Like K.I.T.T. on Knight Rider.

hoff-knight-rider-mustangThere are many more innovations in the works and some that are actually arriving in our showroom now.  If you would like to hear more about them, just stop in and see me at Waldorf Ford.  Waldorf Ford is located on Route 301 North in Waldorf, just 15 minutes south of Washington DC.  You can find us online at waldorfford.com.

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Accessorizing your Ford truck

Whether you have had your Ford truck for 1 hour or 20 years, there is no time like the present to add some fun and even necessary accessories.  We have compiled a short list of add-ons that most anyone can put on themselves, though you can always head over to see us to have our Aftermarket team order and install them for you.

These are listed in no particular order, except it does seem like the first ones might be a little easier to install.

1.  HID or Xenon headlights.   Upgrade your headlights to one of these choices for terrific nighttime visibility.  They produce a whiter and brighter light than traditional bulbs.  Light up the roadway ahead and avoid potential hazards sooner.

2.  HID or Xenon Fog lamps.  As with headlights, these new bulbs for your fog lamps really make a huge difference when your visibility is compromised by fog or rain conditions.  These lights can be white or, as more commonly seen off-road, yellow.

3.  LED Under Bedrail lights.   Once you have installed these you will wonder what took you so long to put them on.  These LEDs install right under the bedrails and out of sight, except when you need them.  I am sure at one time or another you have had to fish around in the dark in the bed of your truck for something.  Now with the flip of a switch, your whole bed will be lit up!

4.  Back-up Camera.  Most new vehicles have a backup camera installed.   They are super handy and help to keep you from backing into the trash can or over the kids toys.  They are also great when you are trying to hookup your trailer (unless of course you have a gooseneck trailer).  There are lots of sources where you can buy a kit and install your very own.

5.  Wireless trailer camera system.  While this isn’t really for your truck, it is great for your own peace of mind.  If you do a lot of hauling and want to keep an eye on your precious cargo, then one of these is just the ticket.  You install the monitor in your truck and the camera in the trailer and voila!  Well, maybe not THAT easy, but still do-able yourself.  And the come wireless, so installation is even easier.

Those are our picks for today.  What accessories are a must have for your truck?  Share them with us by emailing them to leads@waldorfford.com.  If you want more information about Waldorf Ford or any of the new F150s or Superduty trucks we have in stock, check us out online at waldorfford.com – or stop by and see us.  We are located on Route 301N in Waldorf, just 15 minutes south of Washington DC.

2013 FORD C.MAX and 2013 FORD FUSION

Two new powerful and fuel efficient cars have arrived at Waldorf Ford. The winner of the Hybrid Awards, the Ford C.Max and the stunning Ford Fusion.

Each car boast a wonderful 47 mpg, but some readers are wondering which one is right for them?

The Fusion, starting at  $21,700 places you in the right merge of style and technology. The sleek design, focuses on a mature class, while the fuel economy allows for longer trips, more often, at lower prices.  Unlike certain flashy sports cars, pulling into your neighborhood in a new Ford Fusion will not scream “mid-life crisis” instead this car will articulate refinery, and a lot of fun.

The 5 seat C.MAX boasts an improved aerodynamic design, giving it a unique appearance that will fit in at Chandra’s soccer game and concerts or nightclubs. Such a diverse audience the C.MAX has.  Some have questioned what the C.Max actually is, calling it a Frankenstein car, created from pieces of Volkswagen, Vans, and Sports cars. Ignite the engine, and create the fire, the New Prometheus has given man.

Whatever car you choose, you will be able to go further with Ford.

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).

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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.