AD #2204 – How the Demon Was Kept a Secret, U.S. August SAAR Surges, Ford’s Plan to Cut Costs

October 4th, 2017 at 11:58am

Runtime: 6:59

- U.S. August SAAR Surges
- Most Big OEMs Post Gains
- Rich People Buy Fewer Cars
- Hurricanes Help Sales
- Hyundai’s SEMA Concept Truck
- How the Demon Was Kept a Secret
- Honda to Eliminate Japanese Plant
- How Ford Plans To Hack It

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24 Comments to “AD #2204 – How the Demon Was Kept a Secret, U.S. August SAAR Surges, Ford’s Plan to Cut Costs”

  1. Bob White Says:

    Ford’s plan is all fluff. Cutting costs and outsourcing to China is certainly not considered to be bold moves.

  2. Lambo2015 Says:

    I think you’ll continue to see all manufacturers cut engine platforms. It’s such a waste to have a 2.7L, 3.0L, 3.5L and 3.7L offered on a platform when the HP differences are negligible. GM has been just as bad offering a turbo 4 with almost the same HP as their small V6 then offering a larger V6 with only 20 more HP. They need to consolidate and build engine plants that will can produce over 1M engines to supply many platforms.
    Down side is when they have a engine defect it affects many platforms. Get back to the days when GM put same engine like the 350ci V8 in everything. Which that engine in its various forms I believe has exceeded the 100 Million mark.

  3. Lex Says:

    How did Hyundai / Kia do in the Sales Department?

  4. BobD Says:

    Interesting the new management at Ford is again promoting cutting development times. That was the mantra several design cycles ago until quality and durability problems became apparent, then management reversed course to add back time to fix things. Guess the old lessons were not learned and the mistakes will be repeated.

  5. motorman Says:

    Since high $$ cars are mostly leased thru a company so the payments are tax deductible have anything to do with the drop in sales and the new tax laws that may be put in place ???

  6. GM Veteran Says:

    Here is a curious question. The car in the Honda story was the Honda Legend, known here as the Acura RLX. The license plate has Japanese script on it and the driver is on the right side, so it sure seems to be a Japan-market car. Why then, is the nameplate Legend in English?

  7. BobD Says:

    I call BS on the secret Demon story… While the exact numbers may have been kept a secret, you don’t add 100 hp to an engine and keep everyone in the dark on the project. Their are dozens of design engineers and structural analysts who would need to know the design specs in order to do their work, and having worked in a development environment where test cell work is done, “re-calibrating” the instrumentation to hide the numbers is easier said than done without a lot of technicians and support people involved.

  8. Lambo2015 Says:

    #7 I agree, having ran dyno’s before myself. I mean recalibrating the cell to prevent what? The dyno operator from knowing. But then you have a calibration specialist that knows..
    More likely these people had to sign confidentiality agreements before being added to the project.

  9. Kit Gerhartk Says:

    Why is it now so expensive to offer more than one or two engines in a car, when in the 1960′s, you had a choice of about 8 engines in “mid-size” American cars?? Different people just “like” different type engines. I continue to believe that Cadillac would sell a lot more CTS’s and CT6′s if they would offer a plain, old pushrod V-8 in them.

  10. John McElroy Says:


    US August Sales

    Hyundai 57,007 -17.7%
    Kia 52,468 +2.5%

  11. Lisk Says:

    9) The cost in the engines isn’t the issue so much, it’s the cost of certifying the engines and the vehicle they go in. All the engines have to be certified to pass the emission laws throughout the operating limits of the engines. In addition, the engines are certified in different EPA weight classes so an engine that passes the emissions at 2800 lbs has to be re-certified for a vehicle for a 3001 lb one. This is one of the reason for lack of manuals (plus the lack of demand). It is not worth the investment to certify a combo that may only account for 5% of the volume. Also by eliminating V6s and olny offering 4s, the crash structure is different so you only have to crash one car not one of each.
    I’m old school too and I remember having Chevelles with sixes, 283s, 327s, and 396s with three or four variations of each.

  12. Lambo2015 Says:

    9&11) Totally agree with Lisk however the tooling and equipment to run an engine line is in the 60-90 Million dollars so producing 2 engines vs 6 can save the company @300M in conjunction with the savings associated with high volume. Ford can get a better price on say a forged block when they buy 2 million vs buying 30k.

  13. Lambo2015 Says:

    #9) To your point about people just liking different types engines I think that has changed over the years. For one due to complexity and specialized tools there are a lot less backyard mechanics that develop a love for a brand or engine. Secondly they are covered and hidden so very few drivers have looked at their engine or even know what they have. Thirdly they are all pretty quiet with the exception of sports cars. So that unique V8 sound is gone in the family sedan, CUV market.
    The only metric that people still know is what they feel when they push down the pedal. So it makes sense to reduce the offerings to the fuel sipper with limited performance, an acceptable powerplant that delivers on par performance and then maybe the HO or sports version.

  14. Kit Gerhartk Says:

    In the 60′s, multiple engines, like Mopar 361, 383, and 440 “B-Block” shared a lot of tooling, but I agree that it would be cheaper to make 2 million of exactly the same thing, especially if one line with one set of tooling has capacity to make all of them. I suspect it would take more than one set of block molds, machining lines, etc., though, if Ford made only one V-6 engine.

  15. Lambo2015 Says:

    #9) Oh and Kit you can get the Cadillac CTS with a 6.2L Supercharged V8. So if you like 640 HP and 630 lb-ft of TQ that’s the car for you.

  16. Kit Gerhart Says:

    #13 Yep, younger drivers don’t much care, but, “on general principals,” quite a few older people don’t want a turbo 4 in an expensive luxury car, no matter how well it works. As far as I know, GM’s turbo 4 works well enough, and I know BMW’s does, having driven them, but Cadillac’s cars aren’t selling well, and 3 series aren’t selling as well as when they had the NA six. Maybe the engine is not a factor in either, though.

  17. Kit Gerhart Says:

    #15 What I’d like in a CTS or CT6 would be a naturally aspirated 6.2 like in a base Corvette, or detuned from that a little, if it would help with mpg and quietness, and make it a purely regular gas engine. The 6.2 used in pickups should be good. It’s 420hp, as I remember, and regular is recommended.

  18. Lisk Says:

    On the dropping of engines, for 2018, GM is dropping the 4.8L version of the V8 engine. The engine only saw service in Vans since 2014 and for the most part had few takers in the earlier pickups. Even when the old body Colorado offered a V8, it was the 5.3L not the 4.8. The replacement for the 4.8 will be the 4.3L V6.

  19. Lisk Says:

    17) The 6.2 gets great gas mileage in Corvettes but it is a real guzzler in pickups. The 5.3 will get 22-24 highway mpg while the 6.2 struggles to get 17. It’s all weight and frontal area in the case of the pickups, but I don’t think a CTS would get the mileage near the Corvettes potential. I totally agree with the V8 it would be a lot smoother.

  20. Kit Gerhart Says:

    The 4.8 never made much sense in the older pickups, except as a marketing thing, as most people seemed to pay the extra $1000 for the 5.3, which had the same mpg ratings in most applications

    The 4.8 being dropped is probably the previous generation Chevy V8. They probably never made a 4.8 version of the new one.

  21. motorman Says:

    Smaller engines put out less pollution and that is the reason for them. 6 cylinders put out less than 8s and 4s put out less than 6s.

  22. Lambo2015 Says:

    21) Yes less pollution, less parts, less weight and more than adequate power. 300 HP is sufficient for most passenger cars and that can be easily had with many turbo 4s and naturally aspirated V6. The V8 is basically obsolete for passenger car applications.

  23. Kit Gerhart Says:

    I certainly agree that turbo 4′s and naturally aspirated V6′s have plenty of power. I have a turbo 4 in my 1989 minivan. I’m just saying that a turbo 4 doesn’t “belong” in a $70K luxury car, especially in the minds of older car nuts.

  24. Lisk Says:

    The 4.8L was made in the newest generation of V8s but being down nearly 50 hp, people anted up the $600 extra. Big advantage of the 4.8L over the 4.3 V6 was the smoothness.