Ford-Toyota partnership is truly a good collaboration. Two of the biggest auto company is having a good deal. When I made a decision to go purchase a new car, I knew precisely what I needed to get. Toyota is such a reliable brand that has cars I can drive all over the place. I went to a dealership in Atlanta to get my new Toyota. Sandy Springs Toyota was a lot of help. They had experts to help me select the perfect car with all options that I wanted. I was very pleased with my purchase. You are able to go to Sandy Springs Toyota Atlanta too! AN dlet just see how this auto partnership works.
Chuck, glad to see a chance meeting and honest admiration of a competitor can lead to what has the potential to be a promising, yet challenging development alliance. Now if only we could get our two-party government to do the same!
Beth: In answer to your questions: It's a surprise to see Toyota and Ford team up. The way they tell it, it all started with a chance meeting in an airport terminal. It's well known, though, that Alan Mulally has always been a great admirer of Toyota. Regarding why it makes sense now: Yes, it's because these big hybrid powertrains are so incredibly expensive to develop. The GM-Chrysler-Daimler-BMW coop spent over a billion dollars, starting in 2004. Toyota and Ford both have significant experience in this arena, but the costs will still be very high.
Fuel efficiency is a function not only of drive efficiency but also rolling and aerodynamic drag. Although pickup trucks will benefit from a hybrid drive system, 30 MPH is possible but anything higher would be a real stretch. This is called managing user expectations.
What is realistic is to look at the 3.5L Highlander Hybrid compared to the 3.7L F150. Both have nearly identical payload, 3/4 ton, but the hybrid gets 28 MPG versus 18 MPG for the pickup. I've long wondered why Toyota didn't cut behind the front seats and back to the rear. Enclose the cabin and finish the bed to sell a hybrid pickup. Better still, eliminate the glass put in a sliding door on the 'street side' and sell a hybrid panel truck.
As for GM's two-mode transmission, a first generation GM effort, it reminds me of Rube Goldberg with way too many parts. It is as if the design teams could not make a clean break with hydro-mechanical transmissions but tried to force-fit motors into the case. But this is somewhat understandable.
Back when the two-mode design was being created, the management of GM, Chyrsler, and the Europeans were actively supporting hybrid-hostile efforts. It is hard for an engineer to do something advanced when those who sign your checks are willfully ignorant and dismissive of your future, hybrid customers.
I rode in a pre-production, Saturn Vue that had a down-sized, two-mode to compete with the Ford Escape. A nice, 5-seat, SUV, GM killed it and the whole Saturn line which characterized the poisionous corporate environment of the rapidly going bankrupt GM. - Bob Wilson
The collaboration between Ford and Toyota does seem to have the potential to dramatically increase the likelihood of a reliable truck hybrid powertrain. When people think pick-up truck, they think Ford F150. However, when people think F150, they think 21 MPG. Increasing a truck to the 40 - 50 MPG range would definitely be worth the higher price tag usually seen on hybrid vehicles.
It is amazing that this collaboration that will most likely involve millions of dollars started with a chance meeting in an airport. This incident shows that thre world indeed is getting smaller, and it is important to always be on the lookout for new opportunities no matter where you are.
When I saw this, my first thought was of how unusual it would be for two avid rivals to partner around something so highly competitive and so important to their future. I know you mention another prominent partnership among leading auto makers in this same post, Chuck. Is it usual that these two would team up?
That said, this kind of "coopetition," as some call it, became somewhat common place in the PC/IT industry to varying degrees of success. Is it because that the development stakes are so high and the costs so extreme that it makes sense now for Toyota and Ford to combine forces?
Samsung's Galaxy line of smartphones used to fare quite well in the repairability department, but last year's flagship S5 model took a tumble, scoring a meh-inducing 5/10. Will the newly redesigned S6 lead us back into star-studded territory, or will we sink further into the depths of a repairability black hole?
In 2003, the world contained just over 500 million Internet-connected devices. By 2010, this figure had risen to 12.5 billion connected objects, almost six devices per individual with access to the Internet. Now, as we move into 2015, the number of connected 'things' is expected to reach 25 billion, ultimately edging toward 50 billion by the end of the decade.
NASA engineer Brian Trease studied abroad in Japan as a high school student and used to fold fast-food wrappers into cranes using origami techniques he learned in library books. Inspired by this, he began to imagine that origami could be applied to building spacecraft components, particularly solar panels that could one day send solar power from space to be used on earth.
Biomedical engineering is one of the fastest growing engineering fields; from medical devices and pharmaceuticals to more cutting-edge areas like tissue, genetic, and neural engineering, US biomedical engineers (BMEs) boast salaries nearly double the annual mean wage and have faster than average job growth.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.