Ford’s Driving Skills for Life Offers Virtual Assembly for Teens

Coming into its 14th year, Ford’s Driving Skills for Life program offers teens some valuable driving lessons. Just in time for prom season, the Virtual Assembly presented on YouTube will show teens the dangers of distracted and impaired driving.

During the program, you will get to see students from Hyde Park High School in Austin, Texas, try on the “Drunk Driving Suit” and then talk about their experiences. This suit simulates what it is like to be impaired by reducing coordination, blurring vision, and slowing down movement.

“Prom is both an exciting yet dangerous time of year for teen drivers,” said James Graham, global manager, Ford Driving Skills for Life. “One of the biggest distractions is additional passengers. We talk to teens about limiting the amount of people in their vehicle as well as buckling-up.”

While many classes participated in the assembly live, it is available to view in its entirety on YouTube.

Since its start in 2003, the Driving Skills for Life program has delivered free hands-on training to more than one million teen drivers around the world. This year the program will add virtual training to help drivers navigate alongside pedestrians and bicyclists and through traffic circles.

Here at Mangold Ford, we hope all the teens in your life have a fun, safe time at prom this year.

Three Ways to Spend Your Tax Refund at Mangold Ford

The majority of Americans receive a tax refund each spring after filing their taxes. If you fall into this group and are looking to improve your car status, here are three ways to spend your tax refund at Mangold Ford.

  • Use it as a down payment. Getting a large tax refund in a lump sum is a great way to fund a down payment on a new or used car. That money plus any trade-in you have will make getting your next car even more affordable.
  • Get some repairs. If you’re happy with your car, but it needs some work, use your tax refund to pay for the necessary work. In addition to any mechanical problems, you could consider getting new tires, smoothing out any dents, or just getting it detailed so it looks, feels, and smells like new again.
  • Accessorize your car. For those of you who really love your current car, make it even more fun with some new accessories. Add some performance parts, get premium floor mats, or upgrade your sound system. The options are nearly endless.

Whether you want to buy a new car or upgrade your current one, visit us at Mangold Ford, and we will take care of you.

Tips for New Drivers

Tips for New Drivers
Here are some tips that will help new drivers stay safe on the road. For more tips for new drivers, give us a call at Mangold Ford!

Whether you’re a teenager who’s just gotten your license or you’ve put it off well into adulthood, driving is a new and scary thing for everyone when they’re starting out. Here are some tips that will help new drivers stay safe on the road.

Driving takes a lot of practice, so don’t think that just because you passed your test you’re an expert. If you can find any further training, like defensive driving courses, consider taking them! You need to be prepared for more driving situations than you encounter during driver’s education.

Second, make sure you know the car you’re driving really well. You need to be able to turn the wipers and headlights on at the drop of a hat, as well as activate the hazard lights, put it in neutral, and more. Familiarize yourself with the distance between the gas pedal and the brake pedal. If there are steering wheel controls or voice controls for the radio, get comfortable using them. They’re much safer than looking away from the road.

Stay out of the far left lane on the highway. You probably don’t need to go 80 miles an hour, and you definitely don’t need to if you’ve just started driving. Always check your blind spot before changing lanes, and don’t touch your phone while driving.

Finally, wait for a day with crappy weather and find a safe place to get used to the feel of driving in rain, snow, high winds, fog, et cetera. You don’t want to drive in rain for the first time in rush hour traffic.

For more tips for new drivers, give us a call at Mangold Ford!

New Ford TV Streaming, Wi-Fi Hotspot Capabilities

2018 Ford Expedition - Eureka, IL
The 2018 Expedition will showcase Ford’s innovative new technologies.

Ford recently announced that the 2018 Ford Expedition will have a range of cutting edge technologies, including live television screening and Wi-Fi hotspot connectivity that supports up to 10 devices, beating out leading competitors.

The 2018 Expedition will have available rear-seat entertainment mounted to the back of the front seat headrests.  Users will be able to stream live television through these screens using the SlingPlayer TV app, which requires at minimum an affordable $20 monthly subscription and gives you access to a range of popular channels. This is the first time Sling has been offered on a mobile app.

The new Expedition will also support Wi-Fi connectivity up to 50 feet away, so you don’t have to be inside your vehicle to use your hotspot. Going on a picnic and want to save data while you eat, or want to work on your computer in the park but need internet access? Set up shop close enough to your car and you get the best of both worlds—the great outdoors and superfast internet.

New Ford TV streaming, better media players, and infotainment tech on more vehicles will define the 2018 Ford model year. Keep an eye out for when new models hit dealerships this year and ask us about them at Mangold Ford!

How to Get Better Gas Mileage in Your Car

2017 Ford Fiesta - Eureka, IL
There are many easy ways to improve your car’s fuel economy.

Considering shelling out for a hybrid because you want better gas mileage? Before you give up on your current ride, try some of these tips to get more fuel economy without spending a dime.

Accelerate Slowly: The faster you accelerate, the more energy your car needs to expend in less time. Instead of accelerating quickly, gradually increase your speed; driving isn’t a race!

Coast More Often: You’ll need to accelerate more often if you use your brakes to stop a lot. Instead, trying coasting around turns or “riding the light” (coasting towards a red light so you won’t have to stop before it turns green).

Regular Maintenance Is Key: Okay, so we lied when we said you didn’t have to spend a dime. Keeping your engine functioning at the top of its game as well as keeping your tires properly inflated are only a few things that contribute to getting better fuel economy.

Avoid Rush Hour: The start-stop of bumper-to-bumper traffic is a death sentence for your gas tank. Try leaving a little earlier than usual to avoid the rush.

Clean Out Your Car: When your car weighs more, it needs more fuel to move the same speed. If you have a lot of junk in your trunk, try cleaning it out to reduce the amount of energy needed to move your vehicle.

If you implement these tips in your daily driving routine, you’re sure to get better gas mileage in no time.

Ford Super Bowl Ad Reinvents Brand’s Image

Over the past few years, Ford has been putting a lot of effort into becoming what it terms a “mobility provider” rather than just an automobile manufacturer. The brand has been collaborating with business startups and investing money in developing new in-vehicle technology in order to expand beyond the realm of simply selling cars. Until now, Ford has not been publicly reinventing its image. However, Ford’s Super Bowl ad is the brand’s first declaration of its new label.

This was clearly a strategic move. The Super Bowl is known for its commercials. Getting airtime during a Super Bowl commercial break is expensive – but worthwhile, as you’ll be broadcasting to one of the largest television audiences in the world. The commercial expands Ford’s image beyond that of your average automaker, introducing the brand’s upcoming ride- and bike-sharing services, electric and hybrid vehicles, and even self-driving cars. The ad will mark Ford’s first Super Bowl spot since 2014, when the company teamed up with James Franco and Rob Riggle to promote the Fusion.

The 90-second Super Bowl ad is Ford’s first televised commercial portraying the brand as a mobility provider. Prior to this, the campaign to revitalize Ford’s image had only been rolled out online and through public relations.

2017 Ford Mustang Changes

2017 Ford Mustang - Eureka, IL
The new-and-improved Ford Mustang.

There’s little doubt that the Ford Mustang is the pony car of choice for drivers who have a need for speed and nimble handling. The popular muscular car saw a major redesign just a few years ago and now Ford is making a new changes for the next model year. 2017 Ford Mustang changes include several price increases as well as a number of cosmetic updates that make this car more attractive.

The turn signals on the Mustang’s hood vents were a nod to the muscle cars of the 1960s but now, with a focus on modern design, Ford is doing away with them.

As for the price, that largely depends on the engine of choice. The V6 Mustangs will see an increase of $770 while the EcoBoost four-cylinder engine models will increase by just $275. Mustangs equipped with a V8 engine will cost $525 more.

The Ford Mustang saw a complete redesign for the 2015 model year, the muscle car’s 50th anniversary. Changes for that model year included an independent rear suspension, the addition of a turbocharged engine that balanced fuel economy with performance, and more.

We here at Mangold Ford are pumped for the arrival of the 2017 Mustang!

Fun Outdoor Winter Activities

snow - Eureka, IL
Make friends with the snow this winter!

Winter is one of the harshest seasons of the year but it doesn’t have to trap you indoors this year! There are plenty of activities for kids and adults to take part in outdoors. Bundle up and head out for a good old fashioned snowball fight. Here are a few fun outdoor winter activities recommended by us here at Mangold Ford. Stay warm out there!

  • Ice Skating – Ice skating is a fantastic winter pastime and, if you’re lucky enough to have a lake or pond near you, is affordable for most families. Take the kids out to the rink and teach them to hit the ice. They could find a new hobby they’ll love well into adulthood!
  • Painting – Painting is an activity you can do both inside and out. Snow painting, however, generally requires you to be outside. Take the kids, give them a spray bottle full of colored water and let them paint the yard! Add the desired food coloring to the water to create a rainbow the entire neighborhood will envy.
  • Shoveling – When all else fails, give back to the community by shoveling everything. Clear sidewalks, uncover driveways, and clear the area in front of local businesses. Making it easier for people to get around is a great thing to do during winter!

Ford Focus RS Hatch Faces Off Against a Rally Car in the Snow

Ford Focus RS Hatch
The Ford Focus RS hatch is a big deal in America, as we don’t get many sporty European hatchback models equipped for high-end performance capabilities.

The Ford Focus RS hatch is a big deal in the American market, as we don’t get many sporty European hatchback models equipped for high-end performance capabilities. The Team O’Neil Rally School wanted to put the RS model to the test, however, by pitting it against a Subaru Impreza STI rally car in the snow. The Focus RS was only slightly modified while the STI had heavy changes that put it at an advantage against its competitor, but the fact remains that the RS was able to hold its own.

With smaller brakes to fit rally tires and 15-inch wheels, a skid plate, and Bilstein shocks, the Ford Focus RS took on the Prodrive-built Open Class Subaru with no other tweaks besides the fact that its ABS had been disabled. The RS eventually fell behind its competitor, but not by much – and the goal of Team O’Neil was not to beat the STI, anyway. Their intention was to see how the Focus RS fared on icy roads against an actual rally car so they’d know how to modify the RS to make it rally-ready.

Will we see a Ford Focus RS hatch turned into a rally car from Team O’Neil soon? Only time will tell. Despite the RS model’s loss against the STI champion, the fact that a production hatchback held its own against a modded rally car is impressive in its own right.

How to Drive Safely in Winter Weather Conditions

Winter weather conditions can make driving a scary experience, but here are some tips for making it through slippery roads and snowy weather.

Stay Home

Sometimes the best winter driving tip is simply not to drive. Nature just can’t be stopped, and even if you’re experienced at driving in the snow, other drivers may not be.

Know Your Tires

Opt for winter tires for increased traction. But even if you use all-season tires, check the tread depth to make sure you’re good to go.

Be Cautious, Even With AWD

All-wheel drive helps your vehicle keep going even in deep snow, but it won’t keep you from sliding around corners or sliding at all, for that matter. AWD keeps you moving, but does nothing to help you stop.

Visibility is Key

Make sure to have your headlights on in low visibility so other drivers can see you and you can see other drivers. Your defroster and wipers should be working too, so make sure to have those inspected before you head into the winter months.

Slow and Steady

When all else fails, don’t rush. It’s better to be late for work by a few minutes because you were going 20 below the speed limit than to get in an accident or get stranded on the side of the road.

Be aware of winter weather conditions and the ways in which you can drive safely. Remember that safety is the priority no matter what!