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Ford Five Hundred/Mercury Montego

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Comments

  • dbc123dbc123 Posts: 105
    I'm mystified by the need to order any Five Hundred. Dealers near me have many dozens of AWD cars on the lots; and this in FL where the option is not very popular. FWD models number several hundred within 50 miles. I could probably locate nearly any combination of model, color and equipment in a few minutes at FordDirect.Com. Why is it necessary to order and wait when this many are readily available?
  • johnclineiijohnclineii Posts: 2,287
    Perhaps because the other 49 states are not Florida. There is no great surplusage of Five Hundreds sitting on dealer lots anywhere near me. Dealers who routinely carried 30 Tauri have exactly ONE Five Hundred in stock.

     

    Don't assume that what you see in Florida is typical of all the rest of the country. It may or may not be...
  • dbc123dbc123 Posts: 105
    Please do not lecture me. I was not assuming what I see here exists elsewhere. It was an observation for information purposes only. Ford has built over 55 thousand Five Hundreds and Freestyles and sold about half that number. That leaves lots of inventory and I'm relatively sure it's not all in FL.
  • johnclineiijohnclineii Posts: 2,287
    No lecturing intended. You asked why people were ordering Five Hundreds...as a person who ordered MINE, I was trying to give you an answer! :)
  • dbc123dbc123 Posts: 105
    John, I know your ordered your car early on but hasn't the inventory improved since then? I don't know exactly where you live but checking the Charleston-Huntington WV dealers I find a total of 71 Five Hundreds available - looks like about a 15 or so are AWD.
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    Theres an article on the Days Oversupply of the Five Hundred, Montego, and Rreestyle in the latest Business Week, so any of you who didnt believe my comments about the email that I received from Carsdirect.com, can check out your local newsstand. The article did state, however, that the Five Hundred hit its target for January, but the trio of vehicles is nowhere near the 250K per year pace that Ford anticipated.

     

    ~alpha
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Actually the sales goal was 200K, that publication (which I read as well) didn't have correct information. In fact, majority of their research to find out "the reason why", could have been easily found at Ford's media website. The media has been quite quick to write the obituary on this vehicle.
  • johnclineiijohnclineii Posts: 2,287
    Yes, cars show up on the internet inventory, but when you go the dealer, most of them are not yet there--or they are already gone. Inventory has improved (when I bought mine, there were none), but there are still very few cars at most of the dealers around here..

     

    Trying to find a Montego is even worse...
  • Theres an article on the Days Oversupply of the Five Hundred, Montego, and Rreestyle in the latest Business Week, so any of you who didnt believe my comments about the email that I received from Carsdirect.com, can check out your local newsstand. The article did state, however, that the Five Hundred hit its target for January, but the trio of vehicles is nowhere near the 250K per year pace that Ford anticipated.


     

    That may be, but the local dealer in Manchester, NH only has 26 in stock of all trim levels. This same dealer family (Autofair) stocks around 50 Honda Accords, by contrast. Only 4-5 of them are AWD, all Limited with Moonroof or SE.

     

    We wanted an SEL AWD for a company car. Could be a month or more wait. Even trying to get an SEL in Blue has proven difficult. We haven't seen one yet because they sell them before we get there.

     

    Despite auto mag reports of being underpowered they're a lot faster than a Subaru 2.5, underpowered car and with only a 4spd auto. Almost no improvement from my '97.
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    I dont really see the Legacy and the Five Hundred AWD in direct competition. And I will be the first to say that our 05 Legacy 2.5i is no rocket, and that a bit more power (coming next year by way of variable valve timing) would be welcomed. But, ours had a price tag of $23K, and we paid invoice. A Five Hundred SE AWD with similar equipment to our Legacy (whose options include auto-dimming mirror, security, and rear spoiler) lists for $25,390 (without spoiler). Thats a fairly large difference. Our other considerations were Accord and Camry, both of which could be had in jazzier trim (EX and XLE, respectively) for the same paid price as our Legacy, but no AWD. Compared with those cars, the Legacy is slower off the line but feels as quick in highway passing. Its not underpowered. From what I've read, it hits 60 in the 9 second range. Now, I will say that I would not buy the significantly heavier Outback Wagon with this engine, especially a Limited trim line model with weight-adding options.

     

    I'm very pleased with the Legacy thus far, and was happy to note that it was Automobile Magazine's All Star Family Car for 2005. (Now, if the Fusion had been available at the time of purchase, things may have changed dramatically. I really like the look of this car, aside from the ghetto fabulous taillights.)

     

    Any time I've commented on the Five Hundred in relation to speediness, I've commented more on the end that when you're looking at the nicer trim lines, with leather, moonroof, etc.... the car is simply not on the same level as much of its competition when it comes to power. And, I'm impressed that the Five Hundred AWD managed 8.3 in the Street Start to 60, by Car and Driver's watch. That certainly isnt slow. But other cars priced at 27K-30K will easily show taillights to the Five Hundred. And if you're looking at a Legacy in that range (the GT Limited), it will blow the doors off the Five Hundred.

     

    Regardless, it is clear that the Five Hundred offers good value, and is a great overall package. The high marks from Consumer Reports will most likely be a boon to the vehicle as well, as that review wields significant weight with many non-enthusiasts.

     

    ~alpha
  • johnclineiijohnclineii Posts: 2,287
    I agree. I also looked at the 2.5 Legacy/Outback wagon with the turbo. No one would say that vehicle is underpowered! At least no one with any sense.

     

    I chose the Five Hundred because I needed the rear seating space and the huge trunk. Friends, rightly IMHO, talked me out of the wagon. The sedan was just too small for my needs/wants.
  • The turbo is great if you want a 4 cyl 20 mpg car.

     

    Consumer Reports gives the weight of the Legacy sedan as 3,540 lbs. They report the Outback wagon to be 3,545 lbs. Subaru USA reports 3,245 versus 3,355, a difference of 110 lbs. CU give a 0-60 number for the 4cyl 4 speed auto Outback of 11.8 seconds. What time have you recorded for 0-60? My 1997 Subaru Outback does 0-60 in just under 15 seconds.

     

    Point is the Outback is a relatively popular but much smaller car with room for four only and much worse peformance than the 6 cyl AWD 500. So if the Subarus can achieve sales success with their level of performance, so can the AWD 500.
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    I think you are a bit contradictory, and do an odd job interpreting facts.

     

    1) Subaru of America gives the weight of the Legacy Sedan 2.5i 4 speed automatic as 3245. The vehicle tested by CR was a 2.5 GT Limited 5 speed auto, which is shown as 3435 lbs in Subaru literature. I am not certain, but do believe that the CR number of 3540 includes weight for instrumentation, which would account for the difference.

     

    2) Subaru shows the Outback 2.5i Limited as weighing 3410. The difference, according to Subaru spec, between the 2.5i Limited OB and our 2.5i Sedan is 3410-3245 = 165 lbs. Thats not insignifcant. In your post, when you were comparing weights, you did not hold constant for any one trim level, or engine, or body style. In my original post, my intention was to compare two vehicles with the same engine-the 2.5i that I drive on a fairly frequent basis to the OB Wagon Limited, whose 165 extra pounds is a detrimental burden, IMO.

     

    3) I dont understand your comment about a 4 cyl 20 MPG car. The Turbo is fast. Fuel economy is the price that is paid.

     

    4) I find it odd that you clearly state

     

    "Despite auto mag reports of being underpowered they're a lot faster than a Subaru 2.5, underpowered car and with only a 4spd auto. Almost no improvement from my '97."

     

    Then you state "CU give a 0-60 number for the 4cyl 4 speed auto Outback of 11.8 seconds. What time have you recorded for 0-60? My 1997 Subaru Outback does 0-60 in just under 15 seconds."

     

    So, in other words, you apparently cant feel the difference between two vehicles that are separated by a whopping 3.2+ seconds in acceleration to 60?

     

    5)"Point is the Outback is a relatively popular but much smaller car with room for four only and much worse peformance than the 6 cyl AWD 500. So if the Subarus can achieve sales success with their level of performance, so can the AWD 500."

     

    I dont believe a majority of OBs are the 4s. In fact, I think most OBs this generation are the Turbos and H6s, I will try to get you hard facts. But in any case, sales success is dependent on many more factors than simply performance and room. The Outback is a vehicle that has carved its own niche and has developed a fiercely loyal following. Additionally, the Outback range starts at 23K and goes through different trim levels and 3 engines, and that variety contributes to its success.

     

    How is the Five Hundred different? Its aimed at a larger market-the full size vehicle. It offers only one engine and tranny combo with AWD. The different trim levels of the Five Hundred do not have distinct personalities as do the basic, Turbo, and H6 Outbacks. The customers of the Five Hundred are not as easily demographically categorized, but I would bet they ARE more willing to consider many alternatives, and the Five Hundred does have a few. Ford was smart to offer AWD, as the only main competitor for that model is the 300. But against that vehicle, the Ford is not as exciting, unique, or interesting, despite being a better value and a better package, IMO.

     

     

    Finally, I have not timed our Legacy to 60.

    ~alpha
  • fdcapt2fdcapt2 Posts: 122
    Great post Alpha, I love it when someone does the research, and then lets someone know what the real deal is. I find it interesting on this forum how certain people talk like they know what's going on, but don't. It's a good thing when someone like you, Ant, Johncelini state actual facts. If anyone in the Long Island area is having trouble getting a Montego, try Hassel Lincoln Mercury in Wantagh. Each time I've been there they seem to have a good amount of cars. I would buy one in a heartbeat if it only had a better motor. The car rides sweet, and is very quiet. It just doesn't have enough power for the weight of the car, and I want a car with more power.
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    Thank you my friend.

     

    ~alpha
  • mschmalmschmal Posts: 1,757
    My dealership currently has:

     

    23 Five Hundreds,

    21 Tauri/Tauruses

    30 Foci/Focuses (we lead in our zone in Focus sales)

    45 Freestars!!!!! ARUGH

    17 Freestyles, the highest level yet

     

    here is where the volume is though,

     

    67 F-150s

    90 Explorers

    37 Escapes

     

    We only have 23 Expeditions.

     

    I would say that since Expedition is a low volume model for us that our 500 inventory is below where it should be. My dealership would probably like to have between 30 to 40

     

    Also even with all those Explorers and F-150s, they will still be the two 05 models we sell out of first.

     

    That being said, where Ford REALLY needs a home run, isn't the Five Hundred, but the revised Explorer coming out this fall.

     

    Mark
  • johnclineiijohnclineii Posts: 2,287
    Amen. And also the Fusion....
  • OK, so we have different weights and trim levels for 4 cycl 4 spd Subarus. Show me any source of a 0-60 performance that's better for that combination than the AWD 500.

     

    My '97 has 152,000 miles so it's substantially slower than new, when it was still slow.

     

    I'd love to know if Ford will have a 3.5 l motor available for '06 500's.
  • johnclineiijohnclineii Posts: 2,287
    The story I am hearing is calendar year 2006, model year 2007...
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    <Sigh>

     

    I never made any claim that the 4 cylinder automatic Subarus are faster than the Five Hundred. They are not.

     

    However, at 30K you have 2 other options should you chose a Legacy or Outback. You have ZERO options in the Five Hundred. This is all that has ever been my point; when priced in the upper strata of the Five Hundred/Montego range, there is more power available everywhere else. And it is my opinion than many plunking down about 30K are looking for a strong portfolio of features, among them power. And perhaps electronic stability control.

     

    ~alpha
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 9,690
    i understand what you are saying, but do you have anything to back up what you say about the lower percentage of 4cyl na ob's, as opposed to 4cyl turbo's and flat 6's?
  • ehaaseehaase Posts: 328
    I read in Automotive News that the 3.5L will debut in 2007 Aviator in calendar year 2006 and in the 2008 Five Hundred in early 2007.
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    I just did a quick search, not much time tonight, but I was unable to find a break-out.

     

    Sorry about that.

     

    ~alpha
  • johnclineiijohnclineii Posts: 2,287
    Large Cars going bye-bye?

     

    Several Five Hundred mentions:

     

    http://www.detnews.com/2005/autosinsider/0502/15/A01-90583.htm
  • No, not exactly.

     

        This is what i think is going to happen. Look at the shifts in europe, there are two reasons large cars do not sell there, taxes (based on the size of the car and engine) and taxes (leasing to insane fuel prices).

        The big reason large cars are going down is because fuel is getting more and more expensive, and in order to improove fuel economy you have to reduce the size and weight of the car, and the size of the engine.

        SUV's are going up because people expect to have horrible fuel economy with SUVs and they like big cars, the big trunk, the room, so if cars keep getting smaller, they will move on to SUV's its that simple.

        But with new technology like Displacement on Demand, Variable Valve timing, and Direct Injection, as soon as they become more and more affordable they will be put together on to more and more cars, and you will see fuel economy improve to the point were you can have a large car again and not worry about it.

        We are on the verge here, we just need to wait a bit, meybe 5 or so years and you will see large cars are not going anyware. I personally prefer a large car, and i love the Idea that FOrd has raised step in height to make it easier to get in and out of. This is excellent and meybe im spoiled, but i love bieng able to drive with my legs and arms flailed about, only a big car can give you such freedom.

        Relax people, the only thing will be what companies are healthy enough to put these important technologies into their cars sooner.
  • I don't think large cars will go away in the U.S. but the whole market is evolving. The growth in popularity of crossovers shows even in the US there is some market resistance to poor fuel economy and performance.

     

    At work we set out to buy a Subaru wagon and wound up with an Accord - the fold-down rear seat made it about as practical for our use. We think the 500 is also a great fit, but we'd like a bigger motor in the AWD version for longevity and performance.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Some segments are being fragmented and unregretably the large sedan segment is one of them. You'll have some major player's that will be able to produce 100K of a specific nameplate, while being able to post a profit. All those with lower sales number's, will require them to be vehicles derived from existing vehicles. (example: Camry to Avalon).

     

    GM has the most to loss in this example since each brand has a vehicle that cater's to this market. Therefore, badge engineering might be required to sustain profittability, or rather, build vehicles from existing architectures and yesturyear engines to spread out the engineering costs while providing each segment a vehicle. Then at that point, you risk negative media/consumer perception over a specific brand.

     

    Minivan's are another segment facing similar issues because of perceptions accumulated during the past decade. You might see them evolved into "Multi Utility Vehicles", rather than the mommy mobile stigma they have received.

     

    Small pick-ups are also another declining segment.
  • tkfitztkfitz Posts: 95
    I cannot see the total demise of the large sedan in the US as long as our driving habits remain the same. I remember when full size was truly huge (60s 70s). Most of todays mid size would have been compacts then. However even the large cars today have to make good use of the practical dimensions-interior room,trunk etc to appeal to most buyers. Overhanging fenders,fins etc...are things of the past. So with raw power at the expense of economy.

    Large domestic sedans seem to reflect this already. Most are loaded with safety features,come with ample power and deliver good economy. Especially highway mileage. 28 to 31 cruising mpg is not so far from what the smaller sedans with four cylinder engines and automatics deliver. The 500 and freestyle have upped the ante a bit with trans and drive line choices to extract the most from a relatively small motor.

    My wife's car has a 2.7 engine, it goes fast enough for me.

    Big cars with big engines are also sold in Europe for those with leadfoot and deep pockets to pay for them.
  • Maybe it is just Ohio, but the dealers around here all all giving big discounts on both the 500 and the Freestyle. 500 advertised prices:

    It is Saturday, and the ads:

    Dealership 1
    "Every 500 has a minimum $3,000 discount"

    Dealership 2
    "$3,000 discounts on 500 SEL's

    Dealership 3
    "1,936 discounts on 500 SE's"

    Dealship 4
    "500 SE for $19,990"

    There are others, but around here, discounts seem easy to get on the 500. Some may be one vehicle only, but I would think when they say "all 500's", that would mean all.
  • The "500" is one of the best cars Ford has come out with in a long time. The engine is not to small but it needs to get better fuel mileage. Put a 2.0 to no more than a 2.5 diesel in it and they will have a great car.

    Ford has the best dealership base in the nation. When traveling that becomes very important.

    Some americans will not be satisfied until they kill everyone one the road with their "big tanks". Especially when they try to drive them like a sport's car and too many are running around with low tires.
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