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Ford Freestar/Mercury Monterey



  • samnoesamnoe Posts: 731
    I have some additional names for the new Freestar minivan, if Ford wants to listen.

    Ford's minivan names have a tradition to be 8 characters, with the last 4 called 'star'. It all started up with the Aero-Star (perhaps because it was very roomy), and then changed over to the Wind-Star (probably because of the wind noise you notice in the Wind-Star driving on the highway). Now they're changing everything to start with the letter 'F', so it's changed again to Free-Star (probably because you can get them almost for FREE, with such kind of rebates and low financing).

    So I have some additional ideas. Of course all names must be not more and not less than 8 characters, starting with an F letter, and ending with 'star', as I stated above.

    Ford's minivans earned five stars in the government's crash tests, so Five-Star is a good name. They also earned 4 stars for side impact crash tests (without the side airbags), so Four-Star is next on the list.

    If Ford will make it run fast enough (something which doesn't seem to happen with the current engine) the name is Fast-Star, Full-Star or Fine-Star. But if not, we will call it Fool-Star or Fail-Star. If it will be just average, call it Fair-Star.

    Since the EPA mileage for the 4.2L is 16/22 (city/highway), we could call it Fuel-Star, or Feed-Star (b/c you feed a lot of gas). If you'll need to replace the fuses as much as the Windstars, call it Fuse-Star.

    Or, we can go by features. It has a fold away third row seat? Call it Flat-Star, or Fold-Star.

    And my last option will amaze you: FORD-STAR ! :-)

    Do you have anything to add to this list? Of course I also have a few other names I don't want to mention them here..., and I hope we will never have to use them :-) LOL
  • svofan2svofan2 Posts: 440
    LOL...Sam you definitely have TOO much time on your hands. I know that the wait time for the Freestar is killing most of us, specially the price list, but you take the cake...there is medication as well as treatments for those cases like you decide to buy a GM van and I can't wait for the names that you can come up
  • samnoesamnoe Posts: 731
    You're either a doctor or a patient... ;^)

    (BTW, if Ford has so much time to search for new names beginning with the F letter, then I have some time, too...)

    GM will not make minivans anymore. They will make some SUV like van. They don't release any info, so I await some surprises. Maybe something similar to the Aztek ????? :<)
  • svofan2svofan2 Posts: 440
    ..LOL...yes I am a "patient" ....a patient prospective buyer of the you are awaiting for GM "Aztek" type SUV/minivan, you are in deeper need of medication than I must be the ugliest things in the planet. Besides GM has a history of launching new vehicles and pulling them out just about the time that they were about to get it right..remember the Fiero?...I believe it was 86 the last year and THAT year was the best of them but GM decided against it..time will tell...
  • wsag26wsag26 Posts: 124
    What's up with Ford and there 'F' kind of thing. By 2006 practically all of there vehicles except Explorer, and Mustang and Expedition and Escape will have 'F's in it. Not to get offtopic though...

    The Ford Freestar will be pretty behind all of the competition because of it's 200 hp engine. People will just keep on putting it behind because of that.

    I don't expect to buy a minivan, because I won't need one. I just look at them and see which one is ahead. Right now, it looks like the Quest and Sienna are getting the big buzz. Chevy/Pontiac/Saturn which will be the last to get redesigned will have a whole lot to think about from here to the time for the release in fall 2004, when it is due to come out.
    Ford, I think is rushing it too much. They need to come out with a more powerful 240 hp V-6 for the Freestar and maybe a extra digit for the Monterey minivan.
  • The Freestar, compared to the Windstar, is quite portly. Ford needed to add a torquey engine to compensate for the extra weight thus the use of a big cube, slow revving engine.

    I, too, am a little disappointed that the 4.2V6 only puts out 201hp. However, the 265 lb-ft of torque is impressive and usable. I would argue that the Ford's 265 lb-ft of torque is more useful than Toyota's 230hp.

    However, we will all have to reserve judgement until we get a seat of the pants experience.
  • wsag26wsag26 Posts: 124
    Mostly, families look for a minivan not because it is the strongest of the pack, like many people look at horsepower on sports cars/convertibles. In this case though, torque is something worth looking at. The 265 will, yes definitely be something better than the 230 or 240 hp on the Toyota Sienna/Honda Odyssey Nissan quest
    Update you with more info when I can
  • svofan2svofan2 Posts: 440
    Someone here pointed to the fact that that we look or want is hp but what gets us going is torque...and that is the truth. Even in the Mustang world (where I am from) hp numbers are impressive but torque is what we are all looking for, granted that usually hp and torque go pretty much hand in hand, but when it comes to minivans torque is the most important thing to have when we get in the highway from a ramp or changing lanes..that is the difference. From what I have read from people test driving the Odyssey, Quest and Sienna they were dismayed at the poor "acceleration" and extreme "laboring" or "noise" of the engine..uhmmm..I wonder why?....maybe lower punds of torque?..I think so, is just that most of us do not know to describe this when it happens and we tend to think that it is hp.
    ...just my opinion, not trying to be confrontational...
  • svofan2svofan2 Posts: 440
    For those that want some comparison...Sienna...242lbs@3600rpm.(2004)
       2003 Windstar......240lbs@3600rpm.
       2004 Freestar......265lbs@3750rpm.
    ..just a note for the "curious"...
       2002 Explorer V8....282lbs@4000rpm.
       2002 Explorer V6....254lbs@3700rpm.

    My 2002 Limited sure pulls a lot (V8).....
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Heavier the vehicle, the more torque it should have (Even better if it's down low under 4000RPM). That's what moves the mass at first, whereas HP shines upon upper RPM acceleration, at points where passing power is needed.

    The Freestar's 4.2L has quite a bit of very usable torque down low, and that will help offset the weight gain.

    This WILL be the last generation of these 3.8(now 3.9L and 4.2L) engines. The next generation of Ford minivans will be powered by the 3.5L V-6 Duratec coming out in a bit over a year from now in other Ford vehicles. That will be quite a major leap above the current 3.9L, 4.2L offerings.

    As for the name game. Passenger cars will start with "F" names, while SUV's will stick with "E" names. With the Exception of the F-150 naturally. And then their "Heritage" vehicles will be Mustang, Tbird, GT Etc. Mercury's line will have "M" names as well throughout all vehicles.
  • samnoesamnoe Posts: 731
    I hope it will be a good engine. All Duratec's are fine, but this seems to be even better. At least that's what they sell us here:

    ANT14: The Freestar will be about 150-200 Lbs. heavier than the Windstar, not more (like one heavy passenger...) so we WILL feel a difference in power with this engine. It seems that nobody even thinks about the 3.9L engine with just 193hp (down from 200 in the current 3.8L) with 248 Lb.-Ft of torque. This will be too slow for the Freestar.

    (Ralph, svofan2: I didn't meant to say 'surprise', I meant to say 'upset'... of course I hate the Aztek more than you... just know that English is NOT my primary language...)
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Yes the 3.5L will feature a few other tech pieces that will trickle into the 3.0L as well. So far the Duratecs have been a problem free, reliable offering. I was quite pleased when the Mazda MPV started using the 3.0L over the 2.5L. Although many have pointed out, why wouldn't Ford install the 3.0L unit onto it's Windstar (like Toyota did with the Sienna). Unfortunatly, it wasn't economically possible for the 3.0L to be fitted "properly" to have decent torque off the line. So next possible offering was the 3.8. And for such a heavy vehicle, the 3.8 would have better performances over the 3.0L.

    I just prefer to flash forward a few years, when the next generation of Ford minivans debut with the 3.5L and AWD.
  • svofan2svofan2 Posts: 440
    It seems that you guys are all well informed and very perceptive on what is coming down the pike..uhmmm....I wonder if any of you are a Ford employee? any case homework well done...Sam you do fine with the English language..I believe you write your thoughts better than some of the recent high school graduates that I encounter the new generation of Freestars coming in 06 or 07?..what is the rumor?..
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Not specific target date yet has been mentioned, right now the program needs to start, than in maybe a years time, they can narrow down the Job1 date.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Aug 25th Job 1 date for the Freestar !!

    This morning Todd Bryant Plant Manager for the Oakville Assembly Plant gave a speech regarding Oakville being the official home of the Freestar, where it'll be built and exported for up to 30 countries. The first few Freestars were rolling off the line, so plan to see them towards the mid/later part of next month at your local Ford Dealership.

    Good morning everyone, thank you for being here. My name is Todd Bryant and I am the Plant Manager for the Oakville Assembly Plant.
  • samnoesamnoe Posts: 731
    Somebody posted a link to this news:

    Note that they're calling this 'ALL-NEW' Freestar, 'ALL-NEW' van, etc... while it's not more than a revised Windstar... Perhaps this is one of the reasons of the name change games, because Freestar - I mean the name - is really ALL-NEW :-)
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    "ALL New" has many connotations. I'm sure auto magazines will "explain" what all new is. Whereas, in this senario.. "All New" is really the name.
  • samnoesamnoe Posts: 731
    I can't imagine why would Ford offer 2 engine choices on the Freestar? All Montereys, and most Freestars (LX Sport & up) will have the new 4.2L engine which most people will prefer, since there will be no big mileage difference, and has much more pulling power.

    Many vehicles who offers 2 engine choices are usually a 4 cylinder or a 6. So there is a big difference in power & mileage. That's why they need to offer both, to give people choices. But if both engines are almost the same, I couldn't see any reason for giving this choice (except maybe for financial reasons, maybe the 3.9L is cheaper to produce for Ford).

    I would recommend for Ford to drop the 3.9L engine. Perhaps this will happen next model year.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Since the new F-150 is too heavy to continue using the 4.2L OHV V-6, you have all that inventory of 4.2L's with no real place to use them. Considering the new Freestar will weight a bit more, and uses practically the same mounting points as the 3.8/ now 3.9L, then it was the next best alternative for the moment. You can give the 3.9L Freestars to fleet sales, and as standard offering to keep the base price low, while using the 4.2L as an upgrade.

    Same as the Taurus, it offers 2 V6's, yet the 3.0L Vulcan is used for fleet vehicles, while consumer's stick with the 3.0L Duratec.

    Both the Vulcan 3.0L and Essex 3.9/4.2 engines are slated to be replaced in a few short years. This will be their last reincarnation...THANK GOD ! Put them to sleep already.
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