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Midsize Sedans Comparison Thread



  • you sound like somebody that might know - read somewhere that the 3.0 and 3.5 blocks were identical, the 3.5 being nothing more than a bored/stroked DT3.0. This 'Detroit' approach (attacking a problem with displacement as opposed to R&D) would make some sense given Ford's situation. If this is the case, Ford would still be lagging under the hood...

    Which is wayyyy different the way the Honda does it?:
    C-engine family
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 8,062
    The 3.5L is a clean sheet design that shares virtually nothing with the 3.0L. If it was just a displacement bump then it would have been ready 5 years ago. The 3.5L supports Direct Injection, twin turbos, etc. It will also spawn a 3.7L variant for Lincoln. The only problem with it is it was needed 2 years ago.

    The 08 Five Hundred is due out in April with the 3.5L.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    OK, point taken, but we are talking apples and oranges here - the engineering acumen in Honda engines, 4 or 6 cylinder, in a league that very very few other mfgrs. even approach.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    This is true. They are directed, as one can see from the ads, to the independent urban dweller.

    There are no beaches, open roads, lakes, pastures, twisties or parents in any of the commercials. It's all urban environment.
  • mz6greyghostmz6greyghost Posts: 1,230
    The 08 Five Hundred is due out in April with the 3.5L.

    The redesigned Mazda6 is rumored to also get the 3.5L, as well as the revised Fusion/Milan twins, in '09.

    I don't remember exactly, but I've seen and heard this from more than one source. I'd assume that capacity at the engine plant will be up by then, if they're clearing out the other two assembly lines.

    This could also be the reason why they bumped back the Mazda6 redesign until mid-'08 as a '09 model, just to give themselves enough time to ensure adequate supply of the 3.5L.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    then what is specifically different about it - fitting something for an extra set of injectors, or a cheap fix solution to HP (turbocharging) etc. - does not a clean sheet design make even when they actually get around to doing it. The DT3.0, while DOHC, has a very rudimentary (inertially shifted cam) VVT system on the intake side only and is regarded by almost all automotive experts as a 'rough and unrefined' engine - granted it is 15 years old. Indeed all the consumer has to do is drive one and ask it to do something it doesn't 'like' - maybe something like revving past 4 or 5000 rpm or so. I have read (MT TOY issue) that the 3.5 has the same problem in the Edge. OTH the reports I've read on the Lincolns have been generally complimentary. Tell me something about a CVVTi system, technology that many of the mfgrs of the cars in this group have been doing since before Ford started promising it.
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 8,062
    What's different? You mean besides the block and the heads? They spent $335M upgrading the Lima plant to produce it. They wouldn't do that if it was just a modified 3.0L.
  • Just so we are clear, the engine is assembled in Lima, Ohio. The components aren't all made in the US though...

    Its certainly a competitive engine in the V6 space. I doubt if anyone else has an answer to compete with a Honda 4 though.
  • baggs32baggs32 Posts: 3,229
    See the link in post 11246. It seems to spell out all of the major differences between the 35 and the 30.

    It also mentions that future expansion is planned for the Clevland engine plant. I had not read that before and I don't know how true it is because that plant is not flexible IIRC and the Lima plant is. Ford's statements seem to imply the two need to go together. Probably because the Mazda version will have different heads, the lincoln version probably has something different, etc, etc.
  • rockyleerockylee Wyoming, MichiganPosts: 13,994
    Over a 100 posts I've skimmed/read over and have to say wow.... :surprise:

  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,741
    According to the wikipedia information, the Fusion/Milan, Mazda6, are not going to get the 3.5L. The Mustang, CX-9, and Jag S-Type are considered as future possible applications.
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    Personally, I can't help but feel the next generation 2011 Altima will have head and taillights that wrap all the way around the car at this rate...


    Now that's funny...I don't care who you are...
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    This forum used to discuss merits of individual cars. Now, we have a new Altima, a new Camry, and several other new vehicles on the market (Optima, Aura, Sebring) and we're talking about engine production plants?

    BOR-ING. :)
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    I could see Mazda keeping their own platform that's slightly smaller and sportier. Zoom zoom is their trademark.

    Except some of the things I have seen have impled the 6 is to get bigger than the Fusion/Milan.
  • ontopontop Posts: 279
    You don't have to participate. I think its good to hear about engines since there seems to be some hope for Ford in the engine department. Help's one overlook their tough interiors.
  • m1miatam1miata Posts: 4,556
    Well, what about the Optima? Wouldn't the Sonata make more sense? I would think the dealer network may be more strong, the car seems to have a good initial quality score, they have the new Alabama plant, and well let's say for other reasons, like it is not a Kia, I would consider a Hyundai first for a Korean make. All the data and reviews are looking pretty promising for the new Sonata. Worthy of consideration, is it not? I took a brief test run and it was OK. Same with the Aura, which I am thinking may be best to test in both flavors XE and XR. I only tested the XE. And you mentioned the New Sebring. Have you seen the car? If you liked the looks, then proceed. I personally would rather consider a Charger or 300 if going with that brand.

    Kinda like the looks of the Fusion and really like the Milan. I know the tail is a bit high. Looks like the Milan stylining sort of controls the big butt look, just a tad compare to Fusion. Overall, a good looking auto. So will Ford be around for years to come? I am more concerned about the company than lack of a few ponies in that 3.o engine. The V6 seems adequate. Would be nice to have the 3.5 - no doubt. Let's see, the side air bags are standard. No stability control standard, but I guess I can live without it. That said, stability control is suppose to be a very good safety feature to have -- there when needed. And Hyundai has it on the Sonata. Is it really a gotta have? I have never had a car out of control and sideways, but that doesn't mean it can't happen. Only takes once to ruin a lifetime. At the moment, it appears not to be a deal breaker though, as people buy loads of cars without that feature. Speaking of safety features, my PT has no side bags, no stability control, no anti-lock brakes, and well not much other than brakes and an old pilot steering it. About 38 years of driving now without an incident -- not bad!
  • m1miatam1miata Posts: 4,556
    Fusion and Milan interiors aren't all that bad -- pretty good, I would say. The pop-up bin on the top looks like something which has some potential to rattle, and some other lighter plastics, but overall it ain't all bad. What elements are not appealing to you?

    I would like to see orange back lit gauges. Seemed like nice seats, as I recall.
  • w9cww9cw Posts: 888
    One interesting thing about Kia . . . its market and quality perception is much different in Europe than here in the USA. It's actually more popular than Hyundai in Europe, and well accepted. But, that's the case with many cars in Europe, as compared to the USA. Kia is building a new plant in Georgia, so it too will have a USA manufacturing presence soon.
  • Except some of the things I have seen have implied the 6 is to get bigger than the Fusion/Milan.

    I hope not. If they want to go big they should bring back the 929 or something. Midsized cars should be midsized. If I wanted to pilot a barge I would get a cop car or something.

    The Mazda6 is the most fun car at its price point, like the Contour was before. I hope they don't mess with it too much.

    Its interesting that the cars keep getting bigger to the point the manufacturers have to keep adding cars in at the bottom. Look at the got as big as the Accord used to be so they had to add the Fit so they would have something actually small. Mazda realized this nitch with minivans...the Mazda5 and MPV are both smaller than other imported minivans...that is to say they are actually mini.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    may be BOR-ING, but for some of us, it is the drivetrain and the engines, in particular, that make or break a car. Is your Accord, for example even half the car that it is without that wonderful 4 cylinder, or the Altima 3.5 half of what it is without the VQ. This may seem like Ford bashing, but for some reason Ford followers take specific offense when that company's ability to produce competitive smaller engines is questioned, something that does have some historical basis in fact.
    The 3.5 is apparently a really new engine (I appreciate the wikipedia reference) that is, at least, in terms of HP/torque, competitive, although it is not apparently going to end up in things like the Fusion/mazda 6. Unfortunate because putting an engine with those kind of specs might seriously improve those cars, both of which ARE solid designs to start with.
    But OK, enough about the 3.5 - we'll see how well it really does.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    I'm not knocking the engine aspect of a car, just the "where are they manufactured" kind of talk. I didn't mean to sound obnoxious with that comment... I was just trying to get back to individual cars instead of engine lines...

    Y'all carry on with whatever y'all like, I'm not the boss in here :)

    PS Captain2: And I do love that I4 in my Accord... :)
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    that's OK, our host doesn't like the where they are made talk either!
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    stability control is suppose to be a very good safety feature to have.
    actually probably is, but please read a comparo done in this months (02-07) C&D on the new M5 with a MT. Stability control has apparently almost ruined what ought to be THE premium ride. The article will give you a good idea of how these systems as well as other electronic systems, improperly applied, can work to make a car almost undriveable.
  • According to the wikipedia information, the Fusion/Milan, Mazda6, are not going to get the 3.5L.

    This is why I don't trust wikipedia...

    Click Me

    More '09 Mazda6 info:

    It also mentions that the redesign will retain the 5-door and wagon as well as the sedan, and a hybrid version is expected as well.

    Am I saying any of this is set in stone? Nope. It means that I'm not ruling ANYTHING out (in terms of the 3.5L or body styles) until official word comes from Mazda.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    The article will give you a good idea of how these systems as well as other electronic systems, improperly applied, can work to make a car almost undriveable.

    Which is why there should always be an OFF button to these systems. I'm all for putting these systems in every car made, but WITH AN OFF BUTTON like Honda provides.
  • hey w9cw , you raise a very interesting issue indeed concerning the differences between the European and American perspectives on KIA products. KIA has a lot of work to do to improve it`s market share here but is, from what I read, beginning to make some small inroads.
    I find it fascinating (and amusing) that many of those who diss the Optima justify their comments simply on the grounds that `its a KIA`!! It`s my bet that they have never closely looked at, sat in, or driven one and the long -held negative perception prevails .
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    don't know about the Honda system, but there are several makes out there, that turning these things off doesn't mean that is necessarily off! Probably some TV lawyers at work.
  • Disabling the stability control also flags the black box in the car (event data recorder) to help absolve the manufacturer in the event of a crash.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,934
    Anyone who disses the Optima because "it's a Kia" should read the recent reviews by MT, C/D, and CR... thoroughly.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    same source - different stories, and who says we can't trust the press? ;)
    Hope the article is right, the 6s would really be nicer with a smooth 260hp or so and likely less pricey than the Speed6. It is interesting to me that also in the same article it is noted that the better acceleration times on the Speed6 were possible only with the stability control off
This discussion has been closed.