Reading Between the Mach E Lines

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Why call another car Mustang if you’re not planning on retiring the Mustang?

Ford hasn’t said any such thing, but it’s implied.

Prediction: The “Mustang” Mach E electric crossover SUV is going to be the only “Mustang” in the near future. It is Ford’s attempt to carry on the name  . . . while retiring the car.

But why would Ford do this?

It almost did it once before.

Back in the late ’80s, Ford developed another car that was meant to replace the Mustang while still being called the same thing. It was a front-wheel-drive car with four and six-cylinder engines designed for the “world market”  . . . as opposed to the American market.

The rear-drive (and V8) Mustang sold well here – but hardly at all over there.

Chiefly, because over there, gas taxes were (and still are) extortionate, which made it very difficult to sell an American muscle car like the Mustang, except in very small numbers to the relative handful of people who could afford one.

Enter the Probe – which was going to be the new “Mustang.”

Ford figured it could sell lots of them in Europe – and that Americans would buy them, too  . . . because it said “Mustang” on the fenders.

Ford figured wrong.

The name, as it turned out, wasn’t fungible.

When word got out about Ford’s intention to call this front-wheel-drive (and no V8) car a Mustang, the reaction was salt-on-slug disastrous – Ford playing the part of the slug. It became very clear, very quickly, that almost no one here would buy a front-drive-car without a V8 masquerading as a Mustang.

Not that what eventually came to be called the Probe was a bad car.

The GT version of it – with a DOHC V6 – was almost as quick as a same-era Mustang GT 5.0 – but it was no more a Mustang by dint of gluing (almost!) that name to its fenders than Bruce is a woman because he put on a dress (and took something else off).

History isn’t fungible.

Ford may own the legal rights to the name, but everyone knows what the car is.

And isn’t.

Which brings us back to this Mach E “Mustang” isn’t-ness.

Ford can call a wheelbarrow “Mustang,” if it wants to. But that doesn’t make a wheelbarrow a Mustang any more than using a female pronoun makes someone born with XY chromosomes and the relevant equipment a male.

And a wheelbarrow is closer to being a Mustang than any electric car will ever be. You move the thing; you’re involved in the process.

EVs are cars in the way that inflatable sex dolls are women. They work – sort of – but something’s missing.

And a “Mustang” without a engine (and with four doors) is missing  . . . everything.

If this Mach E thing is a Mustang just because Ford (like Humpty Dumpty) says so, then anything can be a Mustang, which means, of course, that the name means nothing and Ford has just suicided more than 50 years of brand equity and possibly suicided itself in the process.

So, why?

Has Ford forgotten the Probe fiasco? That was almost 30 years ago, after all.

But that is just the point. Thirty years ago, Americans still cared about the Mustang; today, those same people still do  . . . but they are 30 years older and Ford eyes them as aging out of the market for a Mustang, as historically conceived.

Ford’s thinking – which may be right – is that people who weren’t around 30 years ago don’t have the same conception about what a “Mustang” is – and can be convinced to buy one that, by the standards of 30 years ago – isn’t.

So long as Ford says it is.

But, that still only covers part of it.

And it’s missing a lot of it.

The deeper reason for the trotting out of the “Mustang Mach E to eventually replace the Mustang as we know it probably has less to do with changing demographics than with anticipating regulations. The Mustang – with an engine – is a car that will be increasingly difficult to manufacture in the coming years.

And even harder to sell.

Ford -like everyone else trying to sell cars – knows that electric cars are being forced down Americans’ throats by regulations designed to make it increasingly tough to sell them anything other than electric cars.

Only electric cars qualify as “zero emissions” vehicles; and mass-producing EVs is the only way car companies like Ford will be able to comply with Corporate Average Fuel Economy fatwas that will soon curb-stomp any car company whose “fleet average” economy isn’t almost twice the current fatwa-mandated average of 36 MPG.

The Mustang – as currently configured – isn’t suitable for the government “market” that’s been created.

It’s all coming to a head, very soon. Picture Greta – suited-up as Joan d’ Arc, giddyapping Elon Musk.

Ford hasn’t said it yet, but my bet is that management has already decided that there’s no future for Mustang  . . . the car.

But the badge will live on for a bit, a sad reminder of better times.

. . .

Got a question about cars, Libertarian politics – or anything else? Click on the “ask Eric” link and send ’em in!

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106 COMMENTS

  1. Eric… unfortunately the regulations in the US are footprint based. We need to sell the EV’s to monetize co2 to offset the cost of making cars like the ICE mustang. The choice to run with a performance EV was conscious as to not put out a crap chevy bolt/prius compliance car. Given the options, we went with a mach-e to enable next-gen mustangs instead of GM’s strategy that didnt pan out with the bolt and ended up sacrificing the camaro.

    • Hi Char,

      I know… and I deeply sympathize. But I wish the industry would stand up to the “climate change” cult. If only out out self-interest. This business will be the end of the car business. VW set a terrible precedent by dropping to the ground and exposing its belly, begging to be kicked.

      For openers, the industry could put some money toward a PR/marketing campaign to explain the truth to the public about just how “clean” modern IC cars are (expose the fatuity of the EPA’s “bins” and “tiers”) and then dig into this carbon dioxide scam.

      Also: Attack the principle that the government has any rightful business decreeing “safety” standards for cars – which as you know has nothing to do with whether a car is roadworthy and controllable but only whether it complies with government crash tests and is fitted with various equipment. If Ford and the rest of the industry didn’t have to “comply” with all this weight-adding ukase, Ford and the rest of the industry could build economy cars that weighed less than 2,000 pounds and averaged 60 MPG… and cost less than $15,000 (with a good profit margin).

      The government and its leeches – the sssssssssssaaaaaaaaafety lobby, the people who hate cars and are using the regs to detroy them – will never be placated. I tell this to everyone I know in the business; many of them understand – and agree.

      The Titanic is headed toward the iceberg. It will soon be too late to heel the thing over…

  2. To me, the Mustang died when it became a re-badged Pinto in 1974. Then it was a re-badged EXP, and didn’t have its own chassis again until the generation after that. Then it was a short pudgy thing like a RWD version of a Taurus or (rectal)Probe. The last generation is most akin to the original, but, as with all good things, it won’t last. It will be replaced with a “new” PC Enviro-Mustang piece of garbage.

        • First Fox platform car was the 1978 Fairmont. The Fairmont occupied the place in the line up left by the Maverick ending in 1977 and the Maverick replaced the Falcon. The Falcon platform was used to create the original Mustang.

          Thus the Fox platform Mustang was true to the Mustang roots. It shared heavily with Ford’s mainline compact which in the late 70s was the Fairmont.

    • Hi Graves!

      I have grown fonder of the Mustang II as the years roll by. It was a Mustang by all the must-have measures: Rear-drive/V8 available coupe that clearly looked related to earlier Mustangs. Yes, it was smaller and much less powerful. But it had the essentials – and you could easily make the limp 302 it came with into something serious with a cam change, intake/headers and a weekend’s wrenching. Plus, it was light – which the ’73 Mustang wasn’t. Put another way: It was easier to make a ’74 Mustang II quicker than a ’73 Mustang Mach I.

      I also like the ’80s-’90s era 5.0 GT and LX, too. Not the prettiest of the bunch but great performers and worthy carriers of the flag.

      The current car is simply outstanding. If it didn’t have those got-damned air bags, it’d be just about perfect!

      • The air bags in the current car are fine. The issues with too powerful deployment are in the past.

        I’d be more worried if they were Takata bags, but that’s not the case, as Takata declared bankruptcy.

        • Hi Mike,

          No air bags for me, thanks! They can still injure you – and they have uglified and homogenized car interiors, which all by itself is reason enough to loathe them.

          I’m fine, by the way, with them being available – for those who are willing to pay extra for them. But it’s an affront that we’re all forced to pay extra for them. My “safety” is my business – not the government’s!

          • eric, as if there aren’t still millions of Takata airbags waiting to do their worst. But I dislike airbags in the first place. I had a conversation a couple days ago with a woman who’d suffered injury by the shoulder belt as have I. I have no problem wearing a lap belt although it shouldn’t be mandated.

            • Hi Mike,

              Steering wheels have been homogenized; they all look the same (ugly). Before air bags, the steering wheel was a styling centerpiece that added character to the car. For example, my ’76 Trans-Am’s three-spoke Formula wheel. No other car has anything quite like it.

              But – again – my real objection is to being forced to buy air bags… to buy any ssssssssaaaaaaaaaafety technology. I am not an idiot child – and the government (read: other people) isn’t my parent. These other people are control freak busybodies who need correction…. in the form of my boot up their ass.

                • Hi Mike,

                  We can disagree on the effect of air bags on steering wheel appearance; what’s inarguable is that we’re forced to buy air bags and that’s inarguably tyrannical… unless you believe “the government” has rightful parental authority over us. My position is that when “the government” steps beyond protecting people’s rights – including their right to be let in peace so long as they are peaceful – it us abuser of the people’s rights.

                  Air bags may be a great idea – to you. And you and others who like them have every right to buy air bags, if enough of you make it worthwhile for the car manufacturers to offer them. But no one should be required to install them – or buy them – for the same reason that no one should be forced to “eat a balanced diet” or exercise.

                  • eric, it’s profitable to take rights away and profit from it. Whether it be private enterprise, govt. or both that profit, it’s all the same when you get to the nut-cutting.

                    This is nothing more than what’s been going on since 1913 when the income tax was instituted.

                    I think this quote sums it up fairly well ” “The best way to take control over a people and control them utterly is to take a little of their freedom at a time, to erode rights by a thousand tiny and almost imperceptible reductions. In this way, the people will not see those rights and freedoms being removed until past the point at which these changes cannot be reversed.”

                    ― Pat Miller, Willfully Ignorant

                    • Amen, Eight…

                      I focus on the principle at issue in my writing rather than the irrelevant utilitarian arguments usually trotted out to undermine a principle.

                      I tell people that I’m a got-damned grown man and grown men don’t accept being parented by other adults (not kin to them, at any rate; I tolerate lectures from my mother).

                      The enraging thing is how embedded this idea of parenting other adults (and being parented by them) has become; it’s the unspoken – but accepted – premise underlying practically every debate about practically every issue.

                      It makes me want to start swinging a bat… like the “Bear Jew” in Tarantino’s Inglorius Basterds.

                    • eric, I know just what you mean. It would feel great to have that bat in hand and feel it contact that offender.

                      I could only do that so many times(not enough to satisfy)before I’d be feeling the hurt in my shoulder. Besides, there are people I “see” do the same thing at great distances. Time to break out the 40 round mags clipped together.

                      BTW, I was just looking at my cellphone after hearing a text come in. The tiny piece of goriller tape I have over my selfy camera was looking frayed. I think I’ll use some black RTV when I take it off. I hope nobody here has a phone with that camera not taped over or similar.

                    • eric says – The enraging thing is how embedded this idea of parenting other adults (and being parented by them) has become; it’s the unspoken – but accepted – premise underlying practically every debate about practically every issue.


                      Yes. This.
                      And whatever does not accept and acknowledge that is “crazy talk”, dismissed without need of rebuttal or argument of fact, because it is obviously crazy….to them.

                      They don’t know that they don’t know, nor do they care, and they will cheer your destruction for having tried to explain a different point of view.

                      I fear it will get a lot worse before it will get better.

                  • This is dead on. It’s something I’ve run into on other forums. As far as I’m concerned, it’s my business if I want my daily driver to have a racing steering wheel instead of a big, fat, ugly, button-encrusted airbag wheel, but “Oh, no, the seatbelt is designed to land your face gently into the airbag, you’ll hit the steering wheel without the airbag”. Well a few things about that:

                    -I was under the impression that the seatbelt was there to keep your face from going anywhere near the steering wheel, my bad I guess.

                    -Why do or should you or the government care? It’s not your/their car and it’s not your/their face.

                    -Maybe I’m planning to give it a roll bar and a 5-point too, how would anyone be able to know that? The answer is, no one can know and it’s not their business to know.

                    It’s like people don’t understand that other people are perfectly capable of being concerned for their own health & well-being in the absence of the government telling them how safe they should be and how to be that safe.

                    • The air bag serves a purpose. It’s there to stun you so you won’t see that big limb, pipe, platform, etc. coming at you so you won’t duck.

                    • Mike S, please enlighten all as to what is the proper distance from an air bag.

                      From what I’ve seen, the person to be rendered by an air bag doesn’t have much of a choice as to the distance from it and is going to be moving towards it when it “goes off”.

                      I fail to see how it helps if you’re belted and fail to understand why you don’t realize how many deaths are caused by air bags.

                      I understand why some emergency devices exist but don’t condone putting a gun to somebody’s head to use them.

                      I get using parachutes in a military plane. I get using “ejection seats” in some planes. Let’s just be clear though, neither the parachute or the ejection seat keeps you alive. It’s a stop-gap measure to increase your odds.

                      The buying public shouldn’t be treated like enslaved soldiers who have no choice.

                    • >I fail to see how it helps if you’re belted and fail to understand why you don’t realize how many deaths are caused by air bags.
                      Basic physics, broski. You ever slammed on the brakes and noticed how you and anyone else in the car tends to keep moving forward, albeit temporarily? Multiply that by a factor of 4-5 and you get why they exist. They’re supposed to be a (temporary) cushion that prevents you from hitting the steering wheel or dashboard. The seatbelt alone can’t hold you in place when sudden deceleration like that of, say, and a head-on collision occurs.

                      They aren’t intended to be the primary method of restraint; that job falls to our good friend the three point lap-and-shoulder seat belt. There’s a reason they’re called SUPPLEMENTAL Restraint Systems. Think of them the same way you think of ejection seats and parachutes in fighter planes: as a stop-gap measure to increase your odds. In any collision, you’re gonna end up with at least a couple bruises; do you want to add, say a broken jaw from hitting the steering wheel to that?

                      I’ll readily acknowledge that there is a little bit of irony in having a pyrotechnic device in front of (and to the side of) you to help restrain you in the event of a collision, but that’s the reality of the world we live in. If you think you have a better idea, by all means, patent that shit and the world will beat path to your door.

                      I’m also gonna refer you to the Wikipedia page on airbags because you clearly haven’t done any reading on them.

                      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Airbag

                    • Hiya Mike!

                      Of course you’re right that wearing a seatbelt will usually improve your odds of surviving a crash/reducing injuries, etc. But so what?

                      I run every other day – by choice – because it keeps my weight down and probably improves my health/longevity. But it’s my decision to run – or not. And I would never dream of insisting that running be made mandatory.

                      So why should wearing a seat belt be made mandatory?

                      If you say: Because the unbuckled are at greater risk of being injured or killed and that might “impose costs on society,” then the same just as logically applies to running and myriad other things we do/don’t do that may or may not increase various risks to ourselves.

                      As for “costs to society,” that assumes a collectivist premise, which I reject as much as I do mandated seat belt use and mandated jogging.

                      People should be free to wear seat belts – or not – and reap the rewards (as they see them) and assume the risks/costs (if any). Just as they are – for now – still free to reap the rewards of a healthy lifestyle and assume the risks of a less-healthy one.

                      Who wants to live in a busybody hive where you’re only allowed to do what the other insects decide you’ll be allowed to do… for the good of the hive?

                    • If you really want to talk about useless safety crap, let’s talk about forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking. The former seems completely and utterly useless if you’re actually paying attention to the road (like you’re supposed to be) and the latter…far as I can tell, it’s to protect pedestrians; last time I checked, not jumping in front of a moving car was generally regarded as a smart idea, so I don’t see why you’d need it.

                      We shouldn’t be trying to fix stupid; it’ll just make people stupider.

                    • Amen, Mike!

                      These “assists” are really Band Aids… for poor driving. Why not encourage good driving? If this trend continues, toilets will be fitted with “assistance” technology… when people are no longer capable of wiping their own asses.

                    • As for what constitutes a ‘safe distance’ from an airbag, I’d say, assuming you’re sitting in the drivers seat and the steering wheel is about chest level, about 14 inches or so, give or take, accounting for height and level of fatness.

                    • Mike, I’ve been in a wreck that resulted in my only injury being done by the shoulder belt and know other people injured in this way.

                      I was in another accident where I wore no belt and I used my hands to stop myself via the steering wheel and the windshield where I was NOT injured. I preferred the latter.

                    • Eric: Your point is nominally valid, but unfortunately, everyone on this lump of rock is subject to the laws of physics, and there’s no known way of circumventing them; ergo, on paper at least, making it mandatory is a semi-noble attempt at protecting people from themselves. However, I’ll readily acknowledge that any such law is difficult if not outright impossible to enforce effectively, and relies on the citizenry to understand the consequences of what can happen if they’re in an accident while not wearing their seatbelt. That said, I would think that getting whiplash from an accident because you aren’t wearing one is incentive enough, but I could be wrong (I bring this up because a former coworker never wore his seatbelt and was in two accidents during the 3 years we worked together; he was out multiple weeks as a result of said accidents).

                      Eightsouthman: I’m gonna go out on a limb and assume that that second accident you mentioned occurred at very low speeds, because otherwise you’d have to have the reflexes of Ayrton Senna to physically react like that in a high speed collision. Low speed and high speed collisions are entirely different things. You wanna take the risk and not wear your seatbelt, go ahead, but don’t expect sympathy from anyone if you end up with a broken bone of three.

                    • Clover? Not sure what you mean.

                      Statist? I don’t think so. I just know that air bags do save lives provided you don’t sit too close to them.

          • Eric, the car companies knew they were dangerous too. As I believe you’ve pointed out in the past it’s the last time they really tried to put up any resistance to Uncle’s increasingly intrusive and sometimes irrational demands. (Remember seat belt interlocks? At least the gunvermin backed down on that one.)

        • “The issues with too powerful deployment are in the past.”

          No they are not. The regulators never admitted fault. They never backed down. Instead they passed more laws requiring children to be put in the back seat and rube goldberg devices on the front seats. The unbelted male standard for airbags is still in effect and it will still kill. The only difference is now if the kid is in the front seat they charge the parent criminally. Small adults are on their own.

          • Yep, I recall a few years back a guy put his child in the safety seat in his regular cab F 150. On the way home, an idiot ran a red light and he t-boned them and the child was killed and the airbag really mangled him. Because the pickup has a switch for the airbag and it was in the “off” position he was charged and convicted of murder. If the airbag had deployed and killed the kid, he wouldn’t have been liable and neither would anyone else I suppose. How they managed to charge the victim with murder was one I couldn’t and still can’t get my head around. Negligence, I guess, even though he wasn’t at fault in the wreck.

      • Eric,

        Even the Probe was more of a Mustang than the Mach E is! It, like the Mustang II, still had… some of the elements of a pony car: a stylish two-door body combining a sporty character with a modicum of practicality. This, in essence, is the pony car concept: a grand tourer, moved downmarket so anyone can afford one. The Probe was only missing the V8 and RWD; the Mustang II, though objectively a bad car, had both.

        The Mach E? Let’s see here:

        Stylish? Um, no. Two doors? Obviously not. Sporty character? It’s electric, of course not. A modicum of practicality? The only thing it gets right, except for the part where it’s electric.

        • SC, the ll got a V8 with 140 hp in 75 but the sales never made 190,000 ever and then tanked in 77. They tried variations like the Stallion and King Cobra but the sales got considerably lesser. 1979 was the year the Fox body arrived….luckily.

          All the while the Camaro could be had in many forms and at least a 350 engine. I knew guys who bought one, drove it hard for a while, then dropped in an engine they preferred and had serious power….for back then.

          I built an engine for a friend even finding some angle plug heads and it would scream but it was a damned auto. I never knew him to have a manual and could never understand why. OTOH, I was forced to buy auto’s for the wife. She somehow thought every manual would be like the Malibu that had a Schieffer racing clutch that caused me to rebuild every component except the pedal to stand up to the clutch. Most of the parts were C 50 and C 60 parts with the actuation rod being a Class 8 bolt with no head and both ends “dressed” to fit the ends of the pushrod and the clutch fork.

      • The ’74 Mustang II did not have a V8. At least not initially. The V8 was added either in late ’74 or for ’75. I would have to look it up. But I don’t think the II got the V8 until the ’75 model year.

  3. I think this Mach E mustang brings one more thing to light… how what were once the most innovative companies in the west no longer have any ideas left. I mean yes there is a case to be made for electric cars in certain markets / types of driving. but its not the Mustangs market segment. Instead of creating a new product and convincing customers its a good thing (as Ford once did with the Mustang itself) and therefore creating a legendary product – they just took a name with goodwill and stamped it on a product a created by a bunch of MBAs after reading some market surveys they paid a fortune to consultancies to create. And the consultancies also employ MBAs from the same cities and schools and could care less if they are writing a report for a car maker, a plane maker, or a chair maker – they basically regurgitate all the same headlines the media keeps telling us, ie electric is the future and everyone wants SUVs (of course they throw in a couple charts and tables to make it look like some work was done). Hence he Mustang Mach E was born…..

    You can see this across the whole car industry – people making extremely impractical electric cars (ie too big for cities, to expensive for a second city run around car). And also making SUVs. I think this week Aston Martin announced one…. nobody asks how many 200K SUVs can the market want!! But hardly any actual innovation of the kind we used to see when I was a kid… !!

    • Hi Nasir,

      I think several factors account for this, including cost-no-object dementia. This Mach E costs about $15k more than a current base Mustang. Yes, it’s “more practical” in that it has four doors. But it’s $15k more. The person who can just barely afford the base Mustang can’t afford the Mach E – leaving aside all the other problems.

      Note, in contrast, that the original Mustang was specifically meant to be affordable (like the GTO). You could buy a more expensive version, of course – but almost anyone could afford the base trim.

      EVs assume that a massive increase in the cost of a car is viable; I don’t see how. Therefore, I see this as a purposeful attempt to make cars unaffordable for most people.

  4. This is disgusting for sure. I first read of it a couple weeks ago in Atlas and there’s nothing “E” they don’t like, no matter how stupid the concept.

    I always preferred the Camaro because it was faster and handled better and held together better. But this last iteration should be a hatchback that slides into the roof with a gooseneck hitch and has a 2500 moniker on the side. It and the Dodge both are huge. Yeah, they run like stink and the Camaro even handles well……somehow. But it doesn’t resemble the original much and the Dodge and Camaro as easily mistaken from a distance.

    Ford, in my estimation, has the pony car market wrapped up and could sell them till the cows come home but they’re obviously trying to be the “new” FoMoCo……Beijing Motors….right beside GM.

    Now we had full size(huge)1/2 ton pickups with 4 cylinders. No doubt it would jerk an 18 wheeler lose after a few tries in 4WD, just like the old 82 with a 454……not, not not not not.

    My next ride will probably have “Bandag” branded on it. Just mark around your foot on an alligator you can pick up anywhere on the highways, cut along the lines, use some old inner-tube, bicycle if you like, and make the crossover and be like the “almost completely starving” masses of the world.

    This isn’t a mistake or something that just evolved. It’s been planned by the elite and all they really needed to put teeth into it was the Patriot Act and Fatherland security. Once us useless eaters are gone the world controllers my find they don’t get quite the quality of life they one had.

    Makes me want a bunker too, just like the ones they have. And there is a way to have one just like they have, take theirs.

  5. This is my fear as well.

    I don’t necessarily take issue with an electric Mustang coupe, per se; electric seems to be the future (provided our power grids cane be made to handle it…). But a CROSSOVER Mustang? Miss me wit that shit.

    Maverick would have been a better name.

    • “Maverick would have been a better name.”

      Um no. The Maverick is “The Simple Machine” or otherwise known as the poor man’s Mustang.
      The Mach-E is neither.

      I think they should have brought back the Fairmont or Tempo names. 🙂

      • They haven’t used the Maverick name in 30+ years. It’s fair game now (assuming someone hasn’t trademarked it). Besides, releasing an electric crossover is kind of a maverick move.

        • Hi Mike,

          I had that thought also – about the Maverick. But the original was an affordable car – this thing isn’t. I think guys like Bill Ford (and Barra and the rest) are so far removed from economic reality – leaving aside politics – that they just don’t get that another $42,000 (to start) compact crossover is just what the people of this country don’t need.

          Leaving aside the EV idiocy.

          • As much as I wish I could disagree, people don’t seem to have any trouble paying 40k for high-end variants of the Edge, Highlander, Passport, etc.

            • Mike S. I think what you meant is “some” people don’t have trouble paying for those vehicles. Ever notice how big used car lots have become and dealers have expanded so you can look over new and used concurrently.

              A great many of those “used” cars weren’t traded in, they were lost to the finance company.

              When large manufacturers have 10,000 brand new vehicles “stored” on an unused air strip in dry country, it’s not because they Could sell them but that they Can’t.

              It affects the price of those they can sell.

              • What grade of used car lot we talking about, here? Buy-here-pay-here, most definitely filled with repos. The used section of, say, a Toyota dealer, I’ll hazard a guess and say that only 1 in 20 used vehicles there is a repo.

            • Hi Mike,

              But they’re not paying for them. They are financing them! And over loan periods unprecedented in duration. Six years, on average. Seven and eight commonly. This is dispositive that cars are unaffordable as they are. EVs will make them even more so. But financing can’t be extended much farther because cars depreciate. Most car loans are in danger of being “under water” (owing more on the debt than the car is worth) by the sixth year already.

              A nine or ten year loan on an IC car is untenable. On an EV, it is more so because in addition to depreciation, EVs need thousands of dollars’ worth of new battery pack by ten years old (or less).

              The music is about to stop.

            • Depends on the people doing the buying and how far into debt they are willing to go for a set of wheels. (Are we really up to 10-year car loans yet?) My own definition of being able to “afford” buying something is that you can pull the money out of your wallet (or write a check) and pay for the entire thing. I’m sure there are people who can just fork over 40 thou or so just like that but I sure as shootin’ don’t know any.

              Not to mention that the $42K electric vehicle fits the needs of far fewer people, has less utility than a gas vehicle half the price, and will have little residual value with a bad battery pack in 10-15 years while a gasoline car will likely still be going strong.

              • Jason, I’m the same. I think the last 3 vehicles we’ve owned we just paid outright for them. It allows us to save money on insurance too.

              • I’ve only financed three vehicles (2 new, 1 used). The last one was only because I didn’t want to spend all our savings at once so paid half down and financed the rest. I had just started a new job and the loan guy at the dealer was pissed that I wasn’t buying a new $60K Suburban instead of a used one, when he saw my income. But engineering jobs come and go.

                I like buying at least 11 years old so we can just pay once for the plates and then we’re done, and only carry liability insurance.

              • One of my neighbors paid $75K cash for a new Duramax 2500 HD.

                They also paid a half million cash for their place, which I thought would never sell because the improvements were beyond the level of this neighborhood. Goes to show you never can tell.

              • I for one am thankful for the suckers who shell out for 40-50-100k new cars. Without them there would be no 1000 dollar beaters in 8-10 years. Unfortunately uneconomical to repair electrics will play hob and wreak havoc with my lifestyle, which is part of the point. Can’t leave any escape hatch or anyone alone, the slaves might notice and eventually wake up and approve.

              • They are attempting to make cars a service along with just about everything else. A loan, even a ten year loan, eventually ends. They hate people like several of us here. People who own stuff and don’t have to pay a monthly nut to live and can’t be lured by new and shiny or keeping up with the neighbors. So the idea is not let anyone own anything. You pay for services every month.

                And if you get out of line, say the wrong things, don’t do as your told, well then you will be denied service. Keep your social credit score up or else. The whole world will be like social media.

  6. In the future, all passenger vehicles will be electric, automated, egg-shaped “pods” made by a generic Chinese manufacturer. The only thing that will differentiate them will be the emblems on the front.

    It’s going to be a very depressing future indeed…

  7. There is an elephant in the room regarding EVs that will either end their progress, or end us. Lithium reserves. The CIA recently overthrew yet another democratically elected government. this time in Bolivia for the sole purpose of securing Lithium reserves. Lithium reserves are NOT abundant, and there is currently a number of geopolitical squabbles over them. Of course, like fist fights, geopolitical squabbles pursued to their ultimate conclusion end in death.

    • I don’t believe that the price of batteries will ever come down as we are already realizing the gains from lithium technology for phones, weed eaters, lawnmowers, etc. There is only so much of the stuff and I don’t think the price will ever get lower.

  8. I was just on a FB thread with a friend and a few other guys – the topic was the LA car show, and the EV’s the on display. They’re all obviously fans – one commented that he was “amped up” about the future of the automobile ⚡️⚡️ I don’t get it – the total electrification of our transportation system (and everything else) is not a good thing!

    • Hi Keith,

      I don’t get it, either. Electric cars means all-the-same-cars. Different shapes and colors, sure – but all the same, fundamentally. But then, many people get excited about dey sail fawns, too. Because there’s so much difference between an LG and whatever-the-other-one is. Look! It has more apps! It has a more memory! Of course, they all make phone calls/send texts just the same.

      • The sheep care more about form rather than function. Hell, they shell out thousands for a flippin’ Tiffany & Co. branded tin can!

      • There is certainly a fan-boy cachet over these over-priced, overly complex, soulless transportation appliances. Unfortunately, our government masters are fan-boys too. The whole battery-EV concept seems like a total dead end. It makes absolutely no sense when you consider the big picture.

        • Hi Keith,

          In my darker moments, I wonder whether the EV Mania is a natural consequence of sail fawn mania. People have become habituated to taping, swiping – and living in a virtual world of electronics. Mechanical things are the Yang to this Yin. It’s a different mindset.

          Like the freedom mindset.

          I and most of those here cannot understand – at a gut level, as well as emotionally – the appeal of collectivism; of being “governed” by other people. Yet it seems a majority of people are just fine with collectivism – imposing it on others and having it imposed on them.

  9. I remember seeing a documentary about the Mustang. Part of the program dealt with its possible demise in the late 80s-early 90s. They had a Ford bigwig in the documentary; I think it might have been the CEO at the time Ford contemplated discontinuing the Mustang. Anyway, when Ford proposed dropping the Mustang, he said that the reaction was swift and severe. He said that people wrote by the thousands; the people called them bad names, question their manhood, and questioned their intelligence to even THINK about ditching an American icon! Ford’s management was shocked. The Mustang remained in production…

  10. “Why call another car Mustang if you’re not planning on retiring the Mustang?”

    They are trying to launch a mediocre EV so they are trying to give it a legendary cachet. The Germans tried that and failed. Will the Mustang have autopilot, smart summon and the rest of the cool Tesla capabilities? If not why would anyone buy it?

    • Hi George,

      We’ll see, I guess! GM tried to sell “Pontiacs” that were just rebadged Chevys; Pontiac died off. I hope the same happens here – because I am as much as fan of the Mustang as I am of real Pontiacs (I own one). I dislike badge-engineering and that’s what this thing is.

      • I recall when the Mustang became a Mustang 2. Never could figure out why the public would go for the “anything” 2. Look around. How many Chevy ll’s do you see? I guess more than the Mustang ll.

        I hate the thought of the new F 150 ll….or the new Silverado ll. Just try to hide your eyes and not read anything about the “all new” Corvette “ll”.

  11. How germane: https://twitter.com/GarbyJooman/status/1197228952047124480/photo/1
    Opinion: Ford v Ferrari depicts a ‘car guy’ generation best left dead and gone
    During all 152 minutes of the film, men dominate the screen for 98% of the time. And when I say men, I mean white and straighthttps://nationalpost.com/entertainment/movies/ford-v-ferrari-depicts-a-car-guy-generation-best-left-dead-and-gone

    “It’s a beautifully shot film that will be enjoyable for modern car buyers and enthusiasts alike — engines rev, tires squeal, stopwatches click. But what I saw is a devastating picture of the lack of diversity that permeated the industry in the 1960s.”

    • Hi TC,

      History must be rewritten. It doesn’t matter that – like it or not – America was not “diverse” in the ’60s. History must be corrected as well as hair-shirted. It’s just fine to have Alexander Hamilton played by a black actor – and white/straight male comic book characters played by non-white (and gay) actors… But if Othello or MLK were portrayed as white there’d be a ruckus!

      “Diversity” is tearing us to pieces; making us despise one another.

      PS: The final scene of Man in the High Castle was turned into a Woke lecture on the wonderfulness of black racism and communism. The previous seasons were obviously not “diverse” enough, either – notwithstanding the events take place in the early 1960s.

      • Don’t even get me started on “civil rights” or “diversity”, and I say that as an African-American! I just happen to be one that does not believe in piggybacking off the government or scapegoating the “white” man to avoid responsibility for my actions.

        Anywho, those “rights” as you already know are just another part of the “divide and conquer” strategy. I’ll admit growing up, I used to believe in the whole civil rights/diversity dogma. Then “Black Lives Matter” happened. However, what really woke me up was learning about the Ferguson, MO shooting about 5 years ago. Apparently, some “white” cop shoots an unarmed “black” guy (Michael Brown) who was robbing a convenience store. Afterwards, people began protesting and shouting “Hands up, don’t shoot!”, basically saying that the officer should’ve told Michael to put his hands up instead of shooting him. Moments after hearing that, the bullshit alarm immediately went off. In my mind, I’m thinking even though the officer was obviously in the wrong for shooting an unarmed person, Michael shouldn’t have attempted robbing the store in the first place! At that very moment, it became clear to me that (most) African-Americans, just like every other “minority” group (LGBT, women, etc.) don’t really want equality; they want to be worshiped.

        Just like Orwell’s book “Animal Farm”, we’re all equal; but some of us are more equal than others. I wouldn’t be surprised if in the future, one gets carted off to the “gulag” for even mentioning a “minority” group.

        • Excellent stuff, bluegrey!

          Most people are unaware that the term “racism” is of Soviet (Stalin-era) derivation; it was used – as now – to distract people of different ethnic/racial backgrounds and keep them at each others’ throats – in order to keep them from perceiving their common enemy (Stalin, the Communist Party of the Soviet Union).

          Reasonable people – white, black – whatever – don’t like or countenance thugs, whether badged or not-badged. And I think reasonable people of all backgrounds aren’t out to “get” anyone because of different ethnic/racial backgrounds. Live – and let live – is an appealing idea, regardless of your background.

          So long as you’re a reasonable person!

          But all too many aren’t. When I point out that Lincoln didn’t “free the slaves” – just the ones in the South, whom he had no power to free – and that his whole program was about enslaving everyone, black and white, by making them the property of the federal government – I get snarls and denunciations. I tell ’em to go read what Father Abraham had to say about black people… and get back to me.

          They never do.

          • Hi Eric,

            “I tell ’em to go read what Father Abraham had to say about black people… and get back to me”.

            Lincoln cultists are like Trump worshipers, they see everything they do as some form of multi-dimensionless chess. Pointing out what they actually think, do or did, is irrelevant to them, as these are merely strategic moves in a larger game. Propagandist and court historian, Doris Kearns Goodwin, asserts that Lincoln wasn’t really racist, despite his words; he had to say those things to achieve power, then his “real” agenda could be loosed upon the States. In a way she’s right, his “real” agenda was to destroy the voluntary union and replace it with a centralized monopoly. He had to destroy the union in order to save it.

            Cheers,
            Jeremy

          • Eric, though I certainly agree with you on the way term “racism” is being used, the word has actually been attributed to one Richard Henry Pratt who the Oxford English Dictionary records as having used it in 1902. (Pratt was using the word “racism” to decry the practice of racial segregation.)

  12. $50,000 for this POS. In 5-6 years the battery will be at half power making your 7 year investment a money pit.
    How many moron Americans working 2-3 yobs just to cover rent, food and cell phone can afford this? Sure,,, the .01 percent can but that won’t put Ford in the Black.
    It used to be that the customer determined what would sell and what wouldn’t. Today they are trying to reverse that. We’ll have to see what happens. Back in the day I didn’t think cell phones would make it but boy was I wrong! These idiots are hooked on these playthings worse then if they were heroin. They’ll spend most of their income just to have one. A status symbol, dontcha know! And they get a new one every couple years. My son pays over $400 per month on these things for the “family call anywhere package”. So in this era of not so smart people,,, these EV’s may sell like hot cakes.

    • “So in this era of not so smart people,,, these EV’s may sell like hot cakes.”

      Of course they will! After all, the smarter the tech, the dumber the user. Remember, we live in the “just because we can” era.

  13. Apparently, this was Jim Farley’s idea and the Steelcase guy embraced it. Bill Ford and the car guys (engineers) were vehemently against it.

    It’s a relief knowing not everyone at Ford has gone berserk.

    As you mentioned, the Mustang means nothing to younger generations, anyway. So why not let the Mustang die with dignity?

    • Bill Ford WAS against it. He apparently changed his mind after riding in a mule or looking at the specs (I forget which).

      This isn’t really a surprise…Billy nearly sank the company in the mid-00s, so dumb decisions are clearly nothing new to him.

  14. Well, we will see what the car enthusiasts and the public at large do about this. I am not entirely sure that people are going to want to have their cars effectively taken from them. I thought those nasty oil companies would have something to say to, or are they willing participants in their own market destruction. Of course they are.

    My guess is that the American public will collectively yawn just as they did when pollution rules sucked the wind out of performance, gas mileage rules further gimped performance, saaaaaaaaaafety rules made cars ever more complex and unrepairable, and when Uncle imposed a unenforcable 55 mph speed limit for 21 years.

    Yawn. Where’s my phone, alcohol and beer. What’s on TV?

    • swamp, I didn’t really think about using my smart phone as a computer for a long time. The reason was, I was working so many hours I didn’t have time to do anything with it.

      Once laid off though, I found I had a computer nearly as good as the desk top. One of the best things I have found to do with my phone is to use my headseat while working and listen to TED talks. I’ve learned so much my head’s about to explode.

      I really was delighted to find I could find a video to watch and stream it to the tv. Then I realized the tv was showing the same things my phone had in its memory so I bought a wireless keyboard and plugged it into the tv. Of course I rarely get to watch it since the wife watches the most boring shit you can imagine. When she turns on one of those romantic comedies I say, loud enough to be heard, “Oh shit”.

      I bought a wireless speaker for the computer so we play volume wars at times. I get frustrated, leave and go somewhere I can’t hear the damned tv and do my computer thing on the phone. Yep, I need a laptop but I don’t have good luck with them. Seems like something’s always going wrong with them.

      A month ago my phone began updating everything on it, against my setting’s wishes. I checked, they weren’t allowed but it makes no difference. Google just does what it wants. I had a threat on the screen of my old phone for a couple years. I ignored it till they ruined it somehow. They were pissed I wasn’t updating “their” shit.

      I wish somebody would make a smart phone other than Google or Mac.

      • “I wish somebody would make a smart phone other than Google or Mac.”

        8, there are a few around but they tend to be more expensive and less functional than the ones offered by the Evil Empires since they lack the economies of scale, higher end hardware, and software support of the big guys. For example:

        https://puri.sm/products/librem-5/

        • Jason, I became aware of those about a year ago. After all the research I could do, it became obvious they were nearly useless….dammit. I had high expectations when my buddy sent a link to them.

          • It’s unfortunate, but Google and Apple have a total lock on the smart phone market. Canonical (Ubuntu Linux) and Mozilla (Firefox) tried to take them on and failed. Even the 3rd Evil Empire, Microsoft, wasn’t able to take them on.

            That’s one of the reasons I stick with a simple pre-paid flip phone. (I do understand though that not everyone has the flexibility to make that choice due to work or other issues.)

            • Jason, I’m currently unemployed But, as soon as I’m working again, I’m going to buy a stand alone GPS and a dedicated camera. I’ll buy a flip phone when this one quits. I know there are a couple new phones with cameras that will take pics at long range…..but I ain’t paying $1500 for one.

            • We have a $20 flip phone from Trac-Phone that costs $20 for three month’s service. There is no cell service at our “ranch” anyway so we only use it away from home, emergencies or just one of us calling home from town.

              As far as GPS, I’ve been reading maps since I could read and see little need for it now. It’s almost impossible to even buy a camera now except for really expensive ones since everyone just uses their phone camera.

              • Let me know when you find a map for every oil lease road in Texas and New Mexico. That might be a bit tough since that road that wasn’t there last week is the road you will eventually need.

                Well, it’s an expensive camera I want, hopefully something that will work with the lenses to fit the old Canon film camera.

  15. I have done many 0-to-60 runs in my friend’s Tesla Model S P95D and while it is impressive, it’s never what I would call “fun.” It makes going really quick into a non-event, something routine and predictable. And as a passenger, it creates a nauseating sickness in your stomach because your body feels neck-snapping acceleration from a standstill, there is no build-up like with a fast ICE car. And there are no auditory or NVH cues that your brain uses to sense speed. Just neck snap, a sinking queasiness, and sigh of relief when you hit 60 and can ease off.

  16. Another angle to this is “when car guys don’t make cars”. One of the things that made Detroit products great in the 50’s and 60’s (and a small slice of the 70’s) was that the designers and engineers were car guys. They were the initial test market. I well recall cruising Woodward Ave. in the early 70s. Weird, amazing non-production cars were seen from time to time- driven by engineers and designers. I recall Ram Air V 302, a 390 powered AMX3 that looked like a Pantera driven by Dick Teague (President of AMC), some wild carb experiments on 427 powered Mustangs, some really crazy Hemi set ups in fiberglass Darts and a LS7 powered ’71 Camero, and a turbine powered Chrysler- many of these were “idea cars” driven by enthusiasts employed by the big 3. Some were just their personal hot rods with unobtanium parts like aluminum Top Loaders and quad 2Vs on aluminum intakes or turbines!

    Now we have lawyers, bean counters, marketing fags, and PC Police “making cars” or more accurately screwing up good ideas from the real car guys in back.

    Remember that petty asshole who was the EVP Leo Bebe at FoMoCo in Ford vs. Ferrari? That actor and the script perfectly embodied the exact crap these non-car guys pull to wreck the best parts of American creativity. All for their own destructive self indulgence. They are the little looser kids we all knew growing up- whiners, tattle tales and destructive. That was their contribution and their sense of belonging. If you ask me that’s a mental illness. And they grow into IRS employees and other useless bureaucrats existing to wreck anything that might be constructive or God forbid FUN.

  17. I remember when I was 9 years old or so and my favorite car was the Dukes of Hazzard Charger, then I started seeing these little hatchbacks running around with the Charger name on em. It upset me…. how could they do this to my favorite car? These companies just don’t get what a name means.

    I’m sure the Mustang fans are pissed, but at least the stang is still living on in true form for now.

    • At least in the Charger 2.2’s case, it eventually became the Omni GLHS, and started blowing V8 Mustangs and Camaros into the weeds…unlike the Ford Vic-E Mustang-E. It’ll blow things into the weeds all right, like an electric loco’s cooling blowers does.

      • Crusty, I was 18 and working road construction when one day a train is about to pass under the overpass we’re working on. I notice a couple guys stepped back and so being the genius I was, I bent over to see what they weren’t looking at. The blast from that first cooling fan sent me reeling backward to which I went to the cooler, got water on my kerchief and tried to cool it down. I have never been that curious again. I think I “saw” everything I needed that one time.

  18. Groovy!

    When Ford decides to introduce a sporty, two-seater electro cart, they can call it The “Thunderbird.”

    And should they offer a larger sedan…..you got it…..The “Electro Victoria.” AKA the “E-Vic.”

    The best name for all Ford’s electro trash would be “Edsel.” And I wish the E-Stang the same fate.

    • Not the “E-Vic”, rather the “Vic-E”…feminized like the name.
      Oh yeah, that is a good point, the “E” stands for Edsel not Electric!

    • I’m planning to get a new Mustang this year, a real one with the biiiiig engine. I figure it will be my last one. I’ll drive it until my dotage and then take Ubers.
      Sad to see this happen. Ford owns the brand, but it’s been around so long I think it’s now in the public domain. Sure it’s not the same car as it was in the 60s, but Ford isn’t the same either. Fans have every right to be pissed. Ford, as it is today, owes us good stewardship of the brand that was conceived by far better men than those in the business today. Most changes, with the exception of the mid-70s have improved the car or at least didn’t make it suck. This, however, will suck and suck hard.
      Ford can make whatever car it chooses, but they shouldn’t put Mustang on it. Give the e-car something suitably soy boy like “Ford E-Frog,” retire the Mustang with dignity and let us mourn in peace. I don’t want to see these on the road sporting the horse logo.
      This reminds me of one of my favorite homilies, learned at grandpa’s knee: “You can stick a flower in your asshole, but that don’t make it no vase.”

      • Amen, Amy…

        Glad to hear you’re getting a real Mustang. And – my take – all the preceding cars to wear the badge qualified, even the Mustang II. It may have been smaller and de-powered, but it was still rear-drive, two-plus-two and offered an available V8 that was the same basic Ford small block V8 that the earlier cars had – and easily upgraded to spec!

        In what circus house of mirrors does a four-door crossover powered by batteries qualify as a “Mustang.” Would you look at me funny if I insisted on calling a soy patty vegan sandwich a “cheeseburger”?

        I hope so!

  19. Eric, if you are right, then I am absolutely convinced that the these car Corporations absolutely have gotten in bed with the devil (uncle) and know, for sure, the the regs will be changed in favor of EV-only. ICE to be dammed. God forbid.

    • No big innovation or change takes place by these people unless it is agreed to by uncle scam. They have shareholders to support and aren’t about to drop $billions in investments and retooling if they didnt already know what is coming.

    • Regulatory capture is also part of that notion. Mega Corp and its lobbyists write a law and pass it to Loser Congressman B. Congressman B proposes this new law for safffffettty and childrunz and such. Law passes and Mega Corp is johnny on the spot with its new product that magically already meets the new standards. See the sacrificial cow killing of VW as Eric has mentioned before. And anything that benefits fuel efficiency or affordability being nixed over safety concerns.

      No congressman writes their own laws anymore nor are there any laws that protect our freedoms coming out of cungress. EVERY bill passed is about competitive advantage and regulatory capture. The bogeymen propped up by the state are the drivers for these things as a lot of people would start questioning what the hell our congress does every day if they didn’t pass make-work bills pretending to make a difference.

      • “regulatory capture” indeed. except it’s not the corps that capture the regulators, it’s the regulators that capture the corps

        government agencies (all corporations themselves) are the largest shareholders of all publicly traded corporations, including automobile makers.

        Calpers has 370 billion in assets and that is only 1 of 10,000+ corp gov agencies in the usa. tiny Norway has a swf worth 1 trillion and owns 1% of all stocks globally.

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