If there’s one market segment that has been growing by leaps and bounds, no matter the economic climate or recession, it’s the crossover one.
According to data collected by Ford, since 2006, sales have increased by a whopping 220 percent. Why 2006? Because that is when the Blue Oval introduced its own contender on the US market, the Edge crossover.
Now, with sales surging and major improvements being made left and right (see the 2011 Ford Explorer SUV or the 2012 Ford Mustang Boss 302), the company has also introduced the refreshed 2011 Ford Edge.
“Edge competes in one of the fastest-growing and most fiercely competitive segments in the industry,” said Amy Marentic, Ford’s Crossover Group Marketing Manager. “Still, Edge is growing sales at an incredible rate. Edge defined the crossover segment when it was launched in 2006. Ford has taken a great vehicle and made it even better. The new Edge promises to take the segment to an all-new level.”
So, what does the new crossover bring to the table? A better interior, new options, as well as two new engines.
First off, we have the revised appearance. The crossover now sports a new slightly tweaked front fascia, while the rear end has also seen new cues implemented. The pricier Edge SEL and Limited trim lines will get 18-inch wheels, with the option of 22-inch ones, while the top-of-the-range Edge Sport will get 22-inch ones as standard.
On the inside, the Blue Oval has packed in all of its latest systems and technologies. Leading the pack is the new MyFord Touch infotainment system, already seeing service on the 2011 Explorer, for example. It will use a new 8-inch touchscreen, and accompany the revised instrument gauges.
Most importantly, however, are the two new engines that will accompany the existing 3.5-liter V6, which has been upgraded to develop 285 HP and 253 lb-ft of torque, overtaking all of its V6 crossover rivals. Besides that, a 3.7-liter Ti-VCT V6 will be added on the Edge Sport, and will achieve an even more impressive 305 HP and 280 lb-ft of torque. Frugal-minded customers will no doubt praise the new 2.0-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder engine, which promises to combine adequate power with the best fuel average across the crossover segment.
According to Ford, the whole Edge range is now more efficient, achieving an improvement of 1 mpg in the city average, and 2 mpg better in the highway one. The best results will be 19 mpg city and 27 mpg highway, for the front-wheel drive Edge SEL and Limited versions. These models, according to the Blue Oval, make up for 80 percent of total sales.
All these changes will further help the Ford Edge continue to grasp the crossover segment in an mid-size fist. The market is expected to expand by 20 percent this year, while Ford hopes sales will continue to grow. Data shows that by July, 2010, Edge sales were 33% over 2009’s results, making a lot of Dearborn, Michigan executives really happy.
Expect the 2011 Ford Edge crossover to arrive in US and Canadian dealerships in the following weeks, with production taking place at the Oakville plant in Ontario.