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Ford Atlas Named Autoweek's Most Significant Detroit Auto Show Debut, What Do You Say?

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The new Ford Atlas Concept, which previews the future of America's best-selling pickup truck for the past 36 years and the best-selling vehicle overall for 31 straight years, the F-150, has been named by the editors of Autoweek magazine, the "Most Significant vehicle of the 2013 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS)".

Bob Gritzinger, Autoweek executive editor, explains why:

“The Atlas Concept is clearly Most Significant winner for the things you don’t see, like hidden aerodynamic improvements and weight savings from high-strength steel and interior parts, like thinner seats. Those things add up to significant fuel savings for pickup trucks down the road. A next-generation EcoBoost with Auto Start-Stop technology also signals why Atlas is a real game changer.”

So, to get it straight, the Atlas deserves an award because it introduces many things that are readily available in other mainstream categories for years now to the pickup truck segment, not to mention that some of those features such as active aerodynamics, are already employed on current trucks, like the latest Ram 1500.

Isn’t that like saying the Corvette Stingray should be awarded for its interior because the C6's cabin was borderline terrible, not to mention more mundane than a Chinese toaster?

Well, yes, but then again, a) the Corvette that also improved upon its predecessor is a niche model and b.) after looking at all the new car and concept introductions at the Detroit Auto Show, we couldn't really choose a winner. So in some ways, Autoweek just may have a point since the F-150 is already the most popular model in the U.S.A., and whatever enhancements are made, will have an impact both on the market and on its rivals. Something like trying to pick a winner from a barrel of mediocre apples...

If you think otherwise, head over to the comments to share your thoughts.


PHOTO GALLERY

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5 Comments:

Carmaker1 said... »January 17, 2013

Looks great. If I wanted a full-size truck, this would get my vote. The production model is scheduled for a 2014 NAIAS debut.

Diesels and Manuals said... »January 17, 2013

Can we get a smallish turbo diesels in a 150 Ford? and really get even better mileage? also drop one in the transit, mondeo, and focus, and escape and fiesta while your at it, and bump the fleet MPG up about 20. And some wagons too

MarketAndChurch said... »January 18, 2013

The Atlas generated as much buzz value for the 2012 NAIAS as the Corvette did. It didn't necessarily show up the Corvette, but it certainly generated buzz unseen in quite some time, on par with the Fusion world debut of 2012, which helped Ford become the most looked up car manufacturer on search engines.

Truck buyers generally don't care for the niceties presented on this concept, but making this truck more sophisticated will ripple through the market, and prompt rivals to elevate their offerings, both trucks and SUV/CUV's. There's a market for styling, a market for utility, a market for technology, a market for safety, and a market for performance, and the significance of this concept is emulsion of all those things into one uber product. Sort of the epitome and peak of the rise of this type of vehicle, in 10 years we'll all be driven in self-piloting cars, so this sort of marks the last run of petro-beast.

I personally think the Atlas is the most significant vehicle at NAIAS. Blind spot monitoring and self-parking was tech that Ford made standard in even lower-end offerings from GM, Toyota, and VW. It will again be Ford who raises the standard with active wheel shutters and grill shutters across every product offering in all of its competitors. Dodge beat Ford to market with it, but it sells 1/6th the volume of Ford's F-series, and when a volume leader with hallowed prestige and excellent pedigree makes a move, the rest of the market better respond to the new standard/framework, or be left behind.

Rick said... »January 18, 2013

Personally, I don't need a truck to look like I'm compensating for something. To my eyes that's exactly what Ford's Super Duty trucks look like. Too much like big boy Tonka trucks.

Maricaibo said... »January 18, 2013

It looks like a clenched fist wearing braces.

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