AutoGuide News Blog
The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
Drum roll please! Making its way onto the prestigious Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s (IIHS) Top Safety Pick award is the redesigned 2011 Lincoln MKX. This designation only applies 2011 MKX’s built after February 2011.
The 2011 MKX is in good company – it joins the Lincoln MKS flagship sedan, MKT three-row premium utility and MKZ luxury sedan. To earn the IIHS’s Top Safety Pick, vehicles must have a earn a “good” rating offset frontal-, side- and rear-impact crash tests and roof strength evaluations, and they must also come with standard electronic stability control. Adding to their safety, all Lincoln models feature a number of safety technologies such as advanced radar warning systems. The 2011 MKX features a solid unibody construction, which provides an energy-absorbing structure to help protect occupants, as well as bumper-to-bumper flow-through side rails, structural design and A-pillars, all of which are designed to better manage crash energy.
“New Lincoln models feature some of the most innovative safety technologies, and we are delighted that all are now rated ‘Top Safety Picks’ by the IIHS,” said Scott Tobin, director, Lincoln Product Development. “Prestige and safety go hand in hand, and this is proof that Lincoln offers safety as another compelling reason to buy.”
However, the technology is so new and apparently so baffling that Consumer Reports went as far to put strikes against the new Edge and MKX, saying that MyFord Touch was so complicated and distracting that it could not recommend either of these vehicles to consumers on that basis alone.
Now Ford dealers are fighting back, taking the initiative by setting up workshops to show customers how to use the new technology; some are even going as far as hiring ‘technology’ specialists.
Like with any new technology, there is obviously a learning curve with how that new technology works,” declared Collin Sewell, Chairman of the Ford National Dealer Council. “We have a responsibility to help customers learn how to fully utilize the great new products that they are buying.”
MyFord Touch essentially groups the vehicle’s communication, entertainment and temperature controls into a central interface, with all functions activated by either touching the screen, steering wheel controls or voice commands. However unlike Sync, it must be used to operate key features in the vehicle, instead of allowing customers to learn at their own pace, likely the main reason for Consumer Reports’ damming remarks.
Furthermore, Ford is also pushing ahead with plans to install it in approximately 80 percent of its vehicles by the year 2015, so many dealers see it as being in their best interests to show customers how it works.
Although Ford Motor Company itself hasn’t yet officially endorsed the workshops dealers are offering, some are hoping they will receive some kind of compensation for putting such programs in place.
I think that there’s a discussion that needs to happen,” remarked Brian Godfrey, general sales manager Pat Milliken Ford in Redford, Michigan.
[Source: The Detroit Free Press]