2010 Mustang Unleashed – Mustang Spellbinder

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I was pretty excited when Mustang invited me to experience the last installment of the Mustang Unleashed campaign in Las Vegas for Dashboard News and Bullz-Eye.com. We stayed at Planet Hollywood on the Las Vegas Strip and were witnesses for an incredible illusion.

The 10th experience of the Mustang Unleashed campaign featured famous Las Vegas magician Steve Wyrick, who regularly performs at Planet Hollywood. We met Steve the night of the event and he peaked our interest right away with some incredible illusions as we enjoyed our drinks around the dinner table.

We also met world champion drifter Vaughn Gittin Jr., who kicked off Ford Mustang’s ‘10 Unleashed campaign by taking the American muscle car to the streets of Japan to drift the streets where drifting was born. Vaughn is a Mustang fanatic and he was pretty pumped about his role in Steve’s plans. As a Mustang fanatic you can always find a way to upgrade your Mustang with different parts online.

Ford and Wyrick shut down the Las Vegas strip to perform what was one of Wyrick’s biggest illusions yet. In front of Planet Hollywood in the middle of the night, Wyrick shackled himself in the middle of the Las Vegas strip and asked Vaughn to come racing down the street in the 2010 Mustang and slam into him. Check out the video below and you can see what happened next. Vaughn’s driving alone was a site the see, but that just set the stage for Wyrick’s big surprise. I have to admit it was just as spectacular seeing it live. The crowd that waited late into the night to see it wasn’t disappointed.

This was the last of 10 dream Mustang experiences Ford brought to life this year with the Mustang ‘10 Unleashed campaign. Famous drifter Vaughn Gittin Jr. slid sideways around Japan, consumer Roger Keeney drove blindly, 18-year-old consumer Derek Murrell drag raced his high school shop teacher, Queen Latifah hit the track with NASCAR racing phenom Colin Braun and Los Angeles resident Daniel Verlarde got inked and customized his own 2010 Ford Mustang. Videos were created for each event and you can see them here.

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Motor Trend road test of 2010 Ferrari California

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Scott Mortara loves the new Ferrari California.

The California is a car filled with firsts for Ferrari: the first front-engine V-8, the first use of direct injection, the first seven-speed transmission, the first true launch-control system, the first retractable hardtop, and the first stacked exhaust. But fear not, all these firsts have not changed the purity of Ferrari; they’ve just expanded its range.

There have been front-engine sixes and 12s, but this is the first front-engine eight and with it Ferrari has managed to make the entry-level California a true supercar in every sense of the word. The direct injection helps improve mileage and decrease emissions but because the California is heavier than the F430 it shares its engine architecture with, the tuning is optimized to boost torque by 14 lb-ft at the expense of 29 horsepower, for a total of 454 hp and 357 lb-ft.

Mortara also liked the interior, calling it the best Ferrari interior so far. Looks like a winner.

  

Ford ramps up for the Taurus SHO

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Ford is getting ready to produce the 2010 Taurus SHO, and the engines will be built in the Cleveland area.

Ford Motor Co. will restart its Cleveland Engine Plant No. 1 in Brook Park this spring, putting its flagship engine into the 58-year-old facility.

“To be part of Ford’s future, we’re thrilled to death,” said Jan Allman, site manager for Ford’s campus in Brook Park.

Engine Plant No. 1, which was idled nearly two years ago, will get the engine that Ford has called a key to its future. However, for the next year or two at least, the engine will go into only a few specialty products. That means low volumes, so Ford won’t need a lot of people to produce it.

When Ford idled Engine Plant No. 1, it employed nearly 600 workers on two shifts. When the plant reopens in the spring, it will require only 250 workers on one shift.

The new SHO made its debut at the Chicago Auto Show.

The reborn SHO–the favorite of enthusiasts everywhere since it first was introduced on the first-generation Taurus–completes the new Taurus lineup with twin turbos, a tuned suspension, and some of the visual flair that made the original hotted-up Taurus a hit when it took its bow in 1989.

Over the course of ten years, Ford sold about 100,000 Taurus SHO sedans, most with a Yamaha-made V-6 engine, some with V-8s built by Yamaha. This time around, Ford’s brought the engine work in-house, with a twin-turbo edition of the 3.5-liter V-6 that’s taking a place in Ford products like the same-sized six over at Nissan. All that power shunts through all-wheel drive and a six-speed, paddle-shifted automatic.

With reasonable confidence, Ford says the new SHO should reignite interest in the big four-door. “The new Taurus SHO delivers on the authentic sleeper sedan formula but adds all-new luxury-appointments, convenience features and technologies to an unsurpassed balance of power and fuel economy,” said Mark Fields, Ford’s president of The Americas, in a release. “This new sport derivative answers enthusiasts’ calls for a premium Ford flagship sedan with even more attitude.”

While the 2010 Taurus carries a mid-size price tag of $25,995, the new Taurus SHO checks in at a BMW-like $37,995. How will that go over with Ford fans? We’ll find out this summer when the new SHO goes on sale.

This is a great move for Ford, as the new SHO looks great.

  

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