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GM Takes on Ford F-150 in New Web Campaign

YouTube spots use bear, fake superhero…and Howie Long.

by on Jul.06, 2015

Howie Long compares Chevy Silverado and Ford F-150 repair costs in one new web ad.

General Motors is amping up its attack on Ford’s highly touted, aluminum-intensive F-150 in a bid to gain dominance in the hugely profitable full-size pickup segment.

The YouTube web spots – which may soon turn into a network TV campaign – rely on a 700-pound bear, a fake superhero and NFL broadcaster Howie Long in a bid to portray Ford’s new truck as too costly for the average owner to maintain.

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The stakes are huge. Full-size pickups are some of the most profitable vehicles in the industry. Ford has long dominated the segment with its F-Series line-up, but some analysts say it may be vulnerable in the wake of the switch from steel to aluminum for the 2015 model-year.

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Ford Adding 850 Jobs for new F-150

Automaker spreads new employees to three sites.

by on Oct.13, 2014

Ford President Joe Hinrichs announces the addition of 850 new jobs at Ford facilities in Dearborn, Michigan.

As the new aluminum-intensive F-150 nears production, Ford is adding 850 employees to ensure the launch goes off with out a hitch. The jobs will be added at three Michigan sites, according to the maker.

Of the new hires, about 500 will be at the Dearborn Truck Plant that assembles the pickup. Another 300 workers are headed for Dearborn Stamping the remainder will work at Dearborn Diversified, which also does stamping.

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“As customer anticipation for the all-new F-150 continues to build, today we are bringing on 850 new jobs to help meet the market demand for the toughest, smartest, most capable F-150 ever,” said Joe Hinrichs, Ford president of The Americas, in a statement. “The new truck sets new standards for the future of tough – right down to how it’s built.” (more…)

Ford’s Heavy-Duty Trucks Also Going Aluminum

Maker charging ahead with lightweight metal for F-Series.

by on Sep.30, 2014

Ford plans to expand its use of aluminum in its trucks to include its Super Duty line-up.

With its new full-size F-Series pickups set to migrate to an “aluminum-intensive” design for 2015, Ford Motor Co. officials have confirmed that the maker’s heavy-duty models also will switch to the lightweight metal when they are redesigned several years from now.

The standard-duty full-size trucks will drop as much as 750 pounds in mass, Ford previously revealed, a move that should yield a significant boost in fuel economy. In turn, “Lightweighting offers a once-in-a-lifetime chance to conquest” buyers away from competitors such as General Motors and Chrysler, said Jim Farley, global sales and marketing director, during a presentation to industry analysts on Monday.

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Ford is just preparing to roll out the new F-150, a move observers believe could be one of the most important it will make for years to come. That’s because the entire F-Series line-up – including standard and heavy-duty models – makes up the single best-selling product range in the U.S. auto industry. (more…)

Ford Dropping Weight – But Raising Price – of New F-150 Pickup

Prices will jump by as much as $3,615 for 2015 “aluminum-intensive” truck.

by on Jul.28, 2014

Ford is making the 2015 F-150 lighter everywhere, including the owner's bank account. The new model is going to be more expensive than its predecessor.

While Ford’s new “aluminum-intensive” 2015 F-150 pickup will be going on a diet, it’s going to be heavier on the wallet, the new truck’s sticker price jumping by as much as $3,615, depending on the specific model.

But the Detroit maker is hoping that potential buyers still see the 2015 Ford F-150 as a bargain because of the anticipated fuel savings that will come with shaving as much as 732 pounds off the big truck’s mass. On average, the new pickups will come in about 625 pounds under the weight of the steel-bodied 2014 F-150 line.

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Ford is also defending the increase by noting it is adding significantly more content to the 2015 remake of America’s best-selling vehicle. There are new LED accent lamps, larger video screens, and other new features on most of the models. And top-line versions, such as the F-150 Platinum and King Ranch edition, get a level of standard equipment more normally associated with luxury cars than work trucks. (more…)

Ford Ready to Prove Aluminum is Built Ford Tough

Maker holds contest to get ideas to test truck’s mettle.

by on Jan.31, 2014

The 2015 Ford F-150 gets an aluminum body that the company will need to show potential buyers is still "Built Ford Tough."

Ford Motor Co. has a lot riding on the introduction of the new 2015 Ford F-150 pickup truck. The best-selling truck for the last 37 years is moving to an all-aluminum body, which runs counter to the rest of the industry.

But job one for Ford’s image makers is proving that the new truck’s aluminum body is as tough or tougher than the steel bodies used for rival trucks from Chevrolet, GMC, Ram and Toyota despite a legion of skeptics prepared to step up and say otherwise.

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One tactic Ford plans to employ is to use testimonials from people who have actually used the new truck. So Ford is looking for truck buyers to test an all-new F-150 before it goes on sale. (more…)