Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Ford to Kill Mammoth Excursion

Ford Motor Co. will kill off the Ford Excursion, its largest sport utility vehicle and a lightning rod for criticism from environmental groups, next year, a source familiar with the plan said on Monday.

The mammoth vehicle will stop rolling off the assembly line in September, as Ford moves to free up production capacity for the refreshed Super Duty pickup truck, said the source, on condition of anonymity.
U.S. sales of the Excursion, which was launched in 1999, are down 25 percent so far this year. The Sierra Club (news - web sites), which dubbed the Excursion the "Ford Valdez" after the infamous Alaskan oil spill, called it an environmental disaster because of its poor fuel economy rating.

Official gas mileage figures are not available from Ford or the Environmental Protection Agency (news - web sites), but a review on Kelly Blue Book's Web site says the Excursion gets about 14 miles per gallon on the highway and 10 miles per gallon in the city.

The reason official figures are not available for the Valdez is that the EPA, in its wisdon, does not publish numbers for vehicles larger than the average Manhattan 2-bedroom apartment. Also exempt is the equally ludicrous Hummer.

Mr. Bluememe has been known to foam at the mouth when discussing the insane American obsession with slow, evil-handling, unsafe, lumbering behemoths like these. The world would be no worse off if owners of these badges of profligacy had bought Volvos instead and punched 1/8" holes in their gas tanks.


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