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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Given the forum I'm posting on and my handle here, I may come off as slightly biased at the gate. I recently checked out FoMoCo's blurb on the 2005 Ford 500 at the source, and have a few comments, along with a personal epiphany and, finally, a question for the forum.

First, the comments. Ford is drawing comparisons between the 500 & our sweet baby the 300. So far, their big attention-grabbing distinction is entry price to get AWD. Assuming that not all of us live in Montana, I'm not convinced the seasonal handling advantages of AWD is worth the yr-round MPG trade-off.
Pricewise, if you assume that a 300/500 comparison is accurate, the Ford is much less expensive.... but that seems like a pretty wild assumption. To remain remotely fair, you have to take the 300C out of the comparison, because IMO the Ford 500 does not have a comparable trim level to the 300C, and that's without ever opening the hood.
Given that I'm not a nuanced performance expert [i.e. not a speed freak?;)], I probably pay disproportinate attention to body styling. There is no comparison in that area. If you fall, like I do, on the love side of the immediate love/hate response that the 300 evokes, then you probably look at every Ford vehicle like I do and just yawn. There's absolutely nothing bad about Ford styling [except maybe the Focus], but can you find your Ford in a packed parking lot, without the telltale MickeyMouse silhouette antenna cozy?

The discussion between the Mercury Marauder and the 300C is interesting, but you have to keep it about performance, because styling is an unfair dimension to compare on. Arguably, with the $ you save on doing nothing to distinguish the outside from all other sedans, you deserve to spend more $ on making the Marauder fast. Without drifting too far into 300-phile subjective gushing, let's just say that Chrysler spent time going out on a design limb to come up with something that incites a reaction--love it or hate it, you will have a reaction--at least compared to what Ford/GM are shipping onto the lots.
I've only recently begun paying close attention to cars, and I can't muster oohs-n-aahs for a 4-dr sedan if I can't tell it apart from any other car. I don't know if that makes me inattentive or just a design snob, but to me $20-$40k is a lot of money to spend on anything, and doing so on a clone that elicits little excitement seems like a waste of money. I know we are talking about subjective responses to mass-produced items here, so 'individuality' is a relative term, but how many cars are churned out with what is labeled as 'distinctive' styling yet the mythical Average Joe can't tell one model from the next, let alone one year from another in the same model?

Which takes me to my little epiphany---Not everybody goes to buy a car for oohs-n-aahs. I don't know how typical of a consumer I am, but for the first time I noticed while reading Ford's ad copy that I was not being marketed to. I was not drawn in by any of their 'look over here,' with the exception of the 'Command Seating' spiel which sounded impressive, but left me suspicious that a mountain was being made out of an anthill. I'm not an heir to millions, so I'm still looking for value, quality, and all the other practical points that show up in marketing surveys. But I'm spending extra money to get a 1st-year design, and I suspect it's because I really like the 300------and that I have fallen victim to an especially effective Chrysler marketing campaign. :rolleyes: I'm still trying to get the hook out of my mouth.

Lastly, the question for the forum. I know this has been asked before in other forms, but I'm going to phrase it a little bit differently. If you believe others when they point to Chrysler's quality inconsistencies, and you still buy the old 'Ford--Quality is Job 1' pitch, why do you own/anticipate owning a Chrysler 300? What makes the 300 better and different from a Ford product, either in general or directly compared to the 500 [I say the 500 because that is apparently the comparison that Ford would like us to make]? Are there people really making oohs-n-aahs over the Ford lineup, and if so, what it is about them that elicits that response? Cause I'm just not seeing it.
 

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That's quite a write-up!! Slow morning at the office? ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
jjs said:
That's quite a write-up!! Slow morning at the office? ;)
Let's just say IndySilverC "has a case of the Mondays". :D
 

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A feeling I know all too well....most weeks my 'case of the Mondays' lasts until lunch on Friday, at which point its the home stretch anyway!! :D
 

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I have been a Ford man all my life, right up until I saw my C at a dealership. The Quality is Job 1 gig ended under Jaques Nasser in the 90's. Coming from Detroit, and knowing a lot of people from "Fords" (as it is called there) the mantra turned into "Cutting corners is job 1". Since I always felt I was buying a higher quality car, I dealt with poor dealers, and bland styling and kept buying Ford cars. I have had good and bad Fords. I almost bought a Marauder, (trading up from a grand marquis). Any brand car will eventually requre tiresome and expensive service, so why not forget about dollars and cents and go for something that moves you, not just moves you around. (Hey, that's catchy!) This is by far the best car I have ever owned...definitely the finest I can afford...barely.
 

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IndySilverC, I enjoyed your write-up :)

LWOOD, good old Jac eh? He cut his teeth for Ford here in Australia and must have taken the "cutting corners is Job 1" mantra with him over to the US. Their products need to go a long long way for me to consider them again. I have been burnt by crap Fords numerous times over a 30 year period and quite frankly I am relunctant to ever let it happen again. Have you heard the First On Rubbish Dump, Forget Or Repair Daily, etc, ones for what FORD stands for? :)
 

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My last Ford was a 94 V-8 Thunderbird. I had it in for warranty service at least 20 times in the warranty period. After replacing most everything (including an engine rebuild) it stopped breaking. My father-in-law drives it now and is very happy with it. My current car is a 99 BMW 528i. It has been in for warranty work 7 times in the 30 months I have owned it. My point is all cars break so if I have to take a car in for warranty work it might as well be a great looking car that has lots of Hemi power and is fun to drive when it's not in the shop. Ordered 6/23/04...still waiting.
 

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Poor Ford no guts, no styling, no pricing, no feeling of "value", not yet in production, no sexy marketing. Just a mini Crown Vic with all the dated engineering. When I started looking at the 300C after the local auto show I just could not believe how "feature rich" this car was. Like getting a Mercedes for $20,000 less and still having more goodies. Plus repairable everywhere, not just in the $200 oil change MB dealerships.
 

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I haven't seen in person or sat in a Ford 500, but it looks fairly decent. The styling is conservative but nice. I have read great things about the interior. The real problems with the car are that it's front-wheel drive and that it doesn't have enough engine. They're using the Duratec DOHC 3.0L V6 engine, which is a very good engine but will be in over its head in a car that size. Once the 3.5L V6 debuts in '06, the 500 will be a complete car.

But how does it compare to the 300? Not terribly well, but the 300 is quite a bit more money. My prediction is that you will be able to option the 500 to a level competitive with the 300 Touring or Limited, but those options would probably drive the price up to 300 levels. People will buy based on styling, comfort, and their choice of front/wheel drive.

The Marauder has also been mentioned. There is alot to like in that car. It's the closest thing you can buy to a muscle car at a new car dealership. The exhaust note is perfect. When it comes down to it, though, it's a 25-year-old car with a disproportionately small backseat, awkward, hard-to-fill trunk, and just doesn't have enought cubic inches to back up the exhaust note.

Given those choices, I'd pick the 300, but I expect the 500 will sell well. The Marauder, of course, is already done and the Crown Vic will follow in a few years.
 

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I was looking forword to the car that is suppost to "beat" and take after the 300, but in no way does this car do anything like it. I am dissapointed, but glad I finally got to see the new ford. It lookes like nothing new from ford, the only ford that i like is the big excursion and mustang, but would never buy either.
 

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Im sorry but I don't see how this car can compare to the 300C. Not because its Ford but the styling on the Ford 500 isn't appealing imo, it looks like the Contour with a different grill. There is nothing bold or appealing on the 500 which can be compared to the 300's.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
Check out the Detroit News article making the 500/300 comparison. I thought that it mentions the entry price for AWD thing that I referred to earlier, but after glancing at the article, I guess I must be on crack. :eek:
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Yet another DetNews article on the comparison. What kind of deal with the Devil is required to get this guy's job? Seems like one step below professional beer and snack taster. :rolleyes:
 

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IndySilverC said:
Given the forum I'm posting on and my handle here, I may come off as slightly biased at the gate. I recently checked out FoMoCo's blurb on the 2005 Ford 500 at the source, and have a few comments, along with a personal epiphany and, finally, a question for the forum.

First, the comments. Ford is drawing comparisons between the 500 & our sweet baby the 300. So far, their big attention-grabbing distinction is entry price to get AWD. Assuming that not all of us live in Montana, I'm not convinced the seasonal handling advantages of AWD is worth the yr-round MPG trade-off.
Pricewise, if you assume that a 300/500 comparison is accurate, the Ford is much less expensive.... but that seems like a pretty wild assumption. To remain remotely fair, you have to take the 300C out of the comparison, because IMO the Ford 500 does not have a comparable trim level to the 300C, and that's without ever opening the hood.
Given that I'm not a nuanced performance expert [i.e. not a speed freak?;)], I probably pay disproportinate attention to body styling. There is no comparison in that area. If you fall, like I do, on the love side of the immediate love/hate response that the 300 evokes, then you probably look at every Ford vehicle like I do and just yawn. There's absolutely nothing bad about Ford styling [except maybe the Focus], but can you find your Ford in a packed parking lot, without the telltale MickeyMouse silhouette antenna cozy?

The discussion between the Mercury Marauder and the 300C is interesting, but you have to keep it about performance, because styling is an unfair dimension to compare on. Arguably, with the $ you save on doing nothing to distinguish the outside from all other sedans, you deserve to spend more $ on making the Marauder fast. Without drifting too far into 300-phile subjective gushing, let's just say that Chrysler spent time going out on a design limb to come up with something that incites a reaction--love it or hate it, you will have a reaction--at least compared to what Ford/GM are shipping onto the lots.
I've only recently begun paying close attention to cars, and I can't muster oohs-n-aahs for a 4-dr sedan if I can't tell it apart from any other car. I don't know if that makes me inattentive or just a design snob, but to me $20-$40k is a lot of money to spend on anything, and doing so on a clone that elicits little excitement seems like a waste of money. I know we are talking about subjective responses to mass-produced items here, so 'individuality' is a relative term, but how many cars are churned out with what is labeled as 'distinctive' styling yet the mythical Average Joe can't tell one model from the next, let alone one year from another in the same model?

Which takes me to my little epiphany---Not everybody goes to buy a car for oohs-n-aahs. I don't know how typical of a consumer I am, but for the first time I noticed while reading Ford's ad copy that I was not being marketed to. I was not drawn in by any of their 'look over here,' with the exception of the 'Command Seating' spiel which sounded impressive, but left me suspicious that a mountain was being made out of an anthill. I'm not an heir to millions, so I'm still looking for value, quality, and all the other practical points that show up in marketing surveys. But I'm spending extra money to get a 1st-year design, and I suspect it's because I really like the 300------and that I have fallen victim to an especially effective Chrysler marketing campaign. :rolleyes: I'm still trying to get the hook out of my mouth.

Lastly, the question for the forum. I know this has been asked before in other forms, but I'm going to phrase it a little bit differently. If you believe others when they point to Chrysler's quality inconsistencies, and you still buy the old 'Ford--Quality is Job 1' pitch, why do you own/anticipate owning a Chrysler 300? What makes the 300 better and different from a Ford product, either in general or directly compared to the 500 [I say the 500 because that is apparently the comparison that Ford would like us to make]? Are there people really making oohs-n-aahs over the Ford lineup, and if so, what it is about them that elicits that response? Cause I'm just not seeing it.
hmmm. epiphany..
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Could Ford perhaps be mistaking the mythical Average Joe for the Borg: <read this in your best monotone Speak-n-Spell voice> "Re-sis-tance is fu-tile....I will pur-chase the same de-sign with a new name be-cause I am told that now it is dis-tinc-tive, and I will like it and be hap-py with it as I drive to the vo-ting booth to vote straight par-ty and then go treat my-self to the same tap-i-o-ca pud-ding that I have been eat-ing ev-er since I was hatched from my pod..."

Are we overestimating the Average Joe? Or is Ford underestimating him?
 

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Getting a little to deep for me. I'll take the 300C over the Ford and Marauder. Though the Marauder was tempting but to much old style looks and too little get up and go. I know, when modded up they can be quick.

Bob
 

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2005 Ford 500

1997 Ford Contour


This is progress? Its no wonder I have never owned a Ford product except those made before 1965. If I wanted an overgrown Ford Contour I would contact Cosworth to MAKE me one that will run circles around my 300c. Ford better release that Mustang concept they have been promising or I see a dead end for their passenger car market. Maybe they can continue to make Cabs and Cop cars to stay afloat.

Back in the day, Ford would have been my car of choice. Innovation, striking design, and bold vehicles. :confused:
 
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