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MyFord Touch  (Source: egmcartech.com)
Ford and other automakers' newest technologies will be rated this Thursday when J.D. Power and Associates releases its annual initial-quality study, which is based on consumer opinions

When it comes to in-car communications and entertainment systems, it's no secret that MyFord Touch is the problematic one of the bunchConsumer Reports has said that the system is too complex and distracting due to its lack of tactile buttons and knobs as well as its voice recognition system. In addition, the fact that its screens are partially controlled by two steering-wheel-mounted five-way switches doesn't help its case either. 

Now, auto reviewers aren’t the only ones hating on MyFord Touch, and MyFord Touch isn't the only Ford technology being criticized. Consumers are now throwing in their two cents, and it's not looking favorable for some of Ford's newest technologies.

While not all consumers who have tested MyFord Touch dislike it, many have complained that the system reboots randomly and has trouble responding to voice commands. In addition, some of is features confuse consumers, even though Ford dealerships offer courses on how to use the system. The good news is that many revisions are in development and will be "phased in" over the next year. 

Aside from technical issues, safety advocates worry that the system will distract drivers too easily causing accidents. 

Others have also mentioned problems concerning Ford's PowerShift dual-clutch automatic transmission, which can be found on the 2011 Fiesta and the 2012 Focus. The PowerShift combines two manual transmissions where one clutch controls first, third and fifth gears while the second clutch controls second, fourth and sixth gears. The idea behind the system is to enable more efficient shifting in order to improve fuel economy. 

Despite its best intentions, the system isn't perfect. Consumers have noted that the system overall is "jerky" with unexpected shifts. Also, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration noted that "huge metallic noises" occurred when downshifting at low speeds, and "dangerous gear changes" made the vehicle surge and eventually stall. 

"The Focus is a little slow to find the right gear as you're slowing from 50 miles per hour," said David Champion, director of Consumer Reports' auto test center in East Haddam, Connecticut. 

But Ford spokesman Richard Truett assures that the PowerShift is just a "different type of transmission" that uses actuators and solenoids to change gears electronically, and that it just takes some getting used to. 

"Consumers will hear different sounds and experience different sensations," said Truett. "But that's normal. We chose the PowerShift because it helps deliver outstanding performance and best-in-class 40 miles per gallon fuel economy." 

Ford and other automakers' newest technologies will be rated this Thursday when J.D. Power and Associates releases its annual initial-quality study. The study is based on consumer judgment after 90 days of ownership, and consumers are to point out any problems they encounter.



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RE: Easy for a Ford executive to say...
By omnicronx on 6/21/2011 9:38:47 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
I do not agree that DCG are for high performance cars
I would tend to agree..

-Faster shifting
-Can be more fuel efficient
-Less power transfer loss (result of getting away from torque converter/planetar gear sets)

Whats not to like? #2/3 on the list are exactly what you care about in a smaller car..


RE: Easy for a Ford executive to say...
By mcnabney on 6/21/2011 10:34:01 AM , Rating: 2
Why would anyone ever buy an automatic tranmission unless they had some form of disability?

Standard transmissions are not hard to use and save tons of money on the purchase as well as maintenance and repairs.


By DanNeely on 6/21/2011 11:25:13 AM , Rating: 3
Why would anyone ever buy a <labor saving device> unless they had some form of disability?

<Less-automated models> are not hard to use and save tons of money on the purchase as well as maintenance and repairs.


By Hieyeck on 6/21/2011 11:58:56 AM , Rating: 2
Welcome to the USA.


RE: Easy for a Ford executive to say...
By wolrah on 6/21/2011 12:25:50 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Why would anyone ever buy an automatic tranmission unless they had some form of disability?


Because it's faster? Perfect shifts in either direction, performed faster than any human ever with a standard.

When well implemented (as apparently the Ford was NOT, but let's use a VW GTI as an example) the only objective downsides to a DCT are cost and complexity.

Now, subjectively I won't deny that it's just enjoyable to row your own gears, but look at any example ever of a vehicle offered with both DCT and standard, DCT is faster.


RE: Easy for a Ford executive to say...
By omnicronx on 6/21/2011 1:32:34 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
When well implemented (as apparently the Ford was NOT, but let's use a VW GTI as an example) the only objective downsides to a DCT are cost and complexity.
Depends on what you consider implemented correctly. VW (and pretty much everyone else) utilizes a wet clutch system while Ford utilizes a dry clutch system.

Its not suppose to perform on par with a wet clutching system, it is suppose to bring a DCT in price to the levels where it can be used in small and midsized vehicles. Unlike the expensive wet clutch systems that are usually used in torque heavy situations.

They are also usually less complex than wet clutch systems and do not require special transmission lubricants and higher priced synthetic oil to keep them running.

That said, this also kind of ruins your rule of always being faster ;) With a professional driver the 5 speed manual Focus goes from 0-60 in around 7.6, while the 6 speed auto DCT tuned in over 8. Great performance compared to a conventional automatic, but still not yet on par with a manual.

If you were to compare an 8 speed BMW DCT to a manual on the same vehicle, you would probably be correct ;)


By Johnmcl7 on 6/21/2011 8:47:31 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Depends on what you consider implemented correctly. VW (and pretty much everyone else) utilizes a wet clutch system while Ford utilizes a dry clutch system.


VW use both, the six speed DSG uses wet clutches but the seven-speed uses dry clutches.

John


RE: Easy for a Ford executive to say...
By YashBudini on 6/21/2011 1:28:01 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Standard transmissions are not hard to use and save tons of money on the purchase as well as maintenance and repairs.

I've had zero problems with my auto after 270K miles, only fluid changes. I would have been on my 2nd clutch with a stick by now, if not a third. And even when clutches hold up sometimes the throwout bearing goes bad, high labor costs for a small replacement part.

Lockup torque converters level the playing field for mileage at highway speeds.

Stick shifts make no sense if you do a lot of stop and go driving.


RE: Easy for a Ford executive to say...
By omnicronx on 6/21/2011 1:38:04 PM , Rating: 2
You also spent money upfront to get that automatic..

You are also kidding yourself if you don't think these very same 'high labour costs for a small replacement part' issues don't exist for automatics too, if not more..


RE: Easy for a Ford executive to say...
By YashBudini on 6/21/2011 1:45:31 PM , Rating: 2
Sure they exist, but I didn't have any.

Larger cars don't come with sticks, economies of scale level the cost playing field.


RE: Easy for a Ford executive to say...
By omnicronx on 6/21/2011 1:56:34 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Sure they exist, but I didn't have any.
I'm sure you could find many manual drivers that would claim the same thing.
quote:
Larger cars don't come with sticks, economies of scale level the cost playing field.
Sure they do, in fact they are kind of making a comeback in recent years with many now equipped with 6 speed manuals. (now of course they are the minority, but they do exist)

Then there are vehicles like Jeeps that buying an automatic would be considered sacrilege and those things last forever!


By YashBudini on 6/21/2011 7:43:58 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Sure they do, in fact they are kind of making a comeback in recent years with many now equipped with 6 speed manuals. (now of course they are the minority, but they do exist)

And on the Acura TL the only way to get a stick is to buy it fully loaded, meaning bigger engine and AWD. Kind of a turnaround from the old days.
quote:
Then there are vehicles like Jeeps...

Let's not address products from Chrysler.


RE: Easy for a Ford executive to say...
By Reclaimer77 on 6/21/2011 2:02:05 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Stick shifts make no sense if you do a lot of stop and go driving.


I don't care if it doesn't "make sense", I'm driving a stick.

quote:
I would have been on my 2nd clutch with a stick by now, if not a third.


Unless you "launch" first gear constantly, I call BS on this. There are more people with 270k manuals out there than your automatic, I assure you.


RE: Easy for a Ford executive to say...
By YashBudini on 6/21/2011 4:45:35 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Unless you "launch" first gear constantly, I call BS on this. There are more people with 270k manuals out there than your automatic, I assure you.

In your neck of the woods sure, but that isn't everything. You go to some city where an hour of repetitive engagements of the clutch, hundreds, to travel a few blocks, are not going to be rewarded with vast lifespans.

Translation - things outside your viewpoint don't necessarily constitute BS.

As usual no middle of the road exists for some people.


RE: Easy for a Ford executive to say...
By Reclaimer77 on 6/21/2011 6:48:24 PM , Rating: 2
How the hell do you know where I live? Just because I'm Conservative I live in the "woods"? Wtf is this.

I drive in downtown Charlotte, North Carolina all the time. Maybe you've heard of it?

quote:
Translation - things outside your viewpoint don't necessarily constitute BS.


Hypocrite much? Just because YOU have an automatic with 270k on it and supposedly no maintenance doesn't mean your viewpoint is correct.


By YashBudini on 6/21/2011 6:57:55 PM , Rating: 2
Your neck of the woods means not a big city. You had already mentioned you were from NC in the past.

The rest of your assumption came from you, not me. It is just a common expression, "your neck of the woods."

Are you ever not an extremist? Nothing here suggests that. You scream when ad hominem attacks are used on you, but after Moto you do the exacty same thing almost as often. Not my viewpoint, but all actual posts, with little if any digging required.

Ready to flame at a moment's notice.


By YashBudini on 6/21/2011 7:14:49 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
and supposedly no maintenance

Here's yet another example of your emotions being out of control. I clearly stated I did fluid changes, about 8 of them altogether as a matter of fact. So where did you come up with "no maintenance?"

And so my while probably not much lower labor costs than a clutch replacement at least the costs have been spread out over time.


RE: Easy for a Ford executive to say...
By Samus on 6/21/2011 12:17:20 PM , Rating: 1
I guess you haven't heard practically everybody who beats on their GT-R has destroyed their transmission. Watch youtube, there's a viral video of a virtually new GT-R transmission exploding at a dragrace.

The only car that got it right was the Veyron, probably because the transmission costs $123,200 dollars, is made almost completely out of titanium, and has dual 12" carbon ceramic clutches, simply gigantic. Most DSG transmission CASES aren't even 12" in diameter.

EVO's have the same problem. So do Audi's (who just recalled a shitload of 'performance' vehicles equiped with DSG's only to mess up their firmwares by limiting sharp high RPM shifting.


By Reclaimer77 on 6/21/2011 1:14:19 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The only car that got it right was the Veyron, probably because the transmission costs $123,200 dollars, is made almost completely out of titanium, and has dual 12" carbon ceramic clutches, simply gigantic. Most DSG transmission CASES aren't even 12" in diameter.


Umm you know most cars don't have over a thousand wheel horsepower right? There's no need to build transmissions to Veyron standards.


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