Ford has always had a very strong presence at the Woodward Dream Cruise and this year will be no exception. But there are dark clouds over Ford due to quality issues, for for enthusiasts very dark clouds over the Mustang because of the MT82 disaster. Nonetheless, Ford will be showing them, broken transmissions and all. And how interesting that Ford offers to install parts that many dealers would void the warranty because of.
Ford Press Release follows:
Ford Performance Past, Present and Future on Display at Mustang Alley during Annual Woodward Dream Cruise
- Next-generation Ford Focus ST – Ford’s first global performance vehicle and the first North American high-performance compact car since 2004 – makes its Woodward Avenue debut after traveling the world show circuit
- Ford Racing technicians at Mustang Garage will install performance parts on 2005 and newer Mustangs while drivers wait
- More than 700 classic Ford Mustangs, a special display of Shelby Mustangs and the latest racing crate engines will be at Mustang Alley Download Event Flyer
DEARBORN, Mich., Aug. 15, 2011 – A wide array of street and racing engines, a huge exhibit of classic and modern Ford-built performance vehicles and race cars, a glimpse at a future EcoBoost®-powered performance Focus, and Ford Racing parts installations – done on the spot for Mustang owners – make Ford Motor Company’s 2011 Woodward Dream Cruise display a must-see, high-octane destination.
Scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 20 – rain or shine – the annual Woodward Dream Cruise is the world’s largest one-day classic car event. About 1.5 million visitors and 40,000 antique and classic cars from all over the country are expected to visit the Dream Cruise, which stretches from suburban Detroit north to Pontiac in a celebration of all things automotive.
The Ford display will be located at the intersection of Woodward Avenue and 9 Mile Road in Ferndale, just north of Detroit city limits. Once again, 9 Mile Road will be turned into Mustang Alley. More than 700 classic Mustangs and other Ford-built muscle cars are registered for a classic car show. If the weather cooperates and all cars arrive as scheduled, this year’s event is expected to feature at least one of every type of Mustang model made since the car debuted in April 1964.
The full Mustang line will be on display, including 2012 examples of the 550-horsepower Shelby GT500, both street and racing versions of the Boss 302, and the Mustang GT and V6 Coupe with performance package. With its reborn 5.0-liter V8 packing 412 horsepower, powerful brakes, six-speed transmission and class-exclusive electric power steering, the Mustang GT remains one of America’s best performance car values.
The Dream Cruise will also offer spectators a close-up look at the next-generation 2012 Focus ST, the performance version of the all-new Focus five-door that features a 2.0-liter EcoBoost engine making an estimated 247 horsepower, a six-speed manual transmission and race-tuned suspension. The eagerly awaited Focus ST, due next spring, will be the first high-performance compact Ford has offered in the United States since 2004.
Other performance Fords on display include SuperCab and SuperCrew versions of the hot-selling SVT Raptor off-road pickup, a Ford GT supercar and a selection of Shelby Mustangs from 1965 to the present in the Shelby “Snake Pit.”
Ford Racing engines
Mustang Alley is the place to be for Ford performance enthusiasts who are building their Ford-powered street rods and race cars. Ford Racing will have a large display of street and strip crate engines at Mustang Alley. A cadre of Ford Racing technicians and engineers staffing the display will be available to meet with the public and answer detailed technical questions about performance, installations, tuning and other topics.
Also, a new Ford crate engine makes its debut at the Dream Cruise. It’s a stroked 363-cubic-inch pushrod V8 based on the classic 302-cubic-inch engine that has powered millions of Mustangs over the years.
Ford Racing engineers will also stage test runs of the new 5.0-liter V8 Mustang GT engine, which is mounted on a run stand.
High-performance parts installed
Mustang Garage on 9 Mile Road is again open for business during the Woodward Dream Cruise. Owners of Mustangs built from 2005 to 2012 can drive in and have Ford Racing technicians install high-performance parts, including axle-back exhaust systems, short-throw shifters and suspension packages, while they wait.
Jost Capito, Ford director of Global Performance Vehicles and Motorsport Business Development, and Dave Pericak, Mustang chief engineer, will also be on site at Mustang Alley on Saturday to meet with visitors. ###
And while the T-56 and TR6060 trans haven’t always been perfect, GM has always stood behind them.
It makes sense to develop a transmission that is rated higher than the torque capacity of the engine. Ford choose an off-the-shelf Getrag that was rated lower than the torque capacity of the new 5 liter engine. And while they may have tested the transmission like this a couple of times, they obviously didn’t do any long-term durability testing since the MT82s fall apart after the first few thousand miles.
We can hope that somebody at Ford is watching this video at this very moment… but being Ford we cannot count on it.
Follow the MT82 tag for for prior posts and background on this topic .
UPDATED 1 October 2011: For readers who haven’t been following this mess with the new Mustang’s 6-speed manual transmission, and Ford’s total silence and lack of warranty support on the issue thru two model years, read more via the MT82 tag: DrivingEnthusiast.net MT82 posts.
Now the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has started an investigation into the problems 2011 & 2012 Mustang V-6, GT and Boss owners are experiencing with Getrag MT82 manual transmissions. Read more here: Detroit News Auto Insider. Fox News. Motor Trend. The New York Times.
A recent article in USA Today (2011.07.27) covered Ford’s recent profit drive. With a particularly relevant sidebar article titled “Mulally: It’s OK to acknowledge problems“. This is an old story he tells about an early sales meeting he attended where every one of 320 charts from dozens of senior managers all showed “green” status – meaning everything was perfectly ok. Mulally asked why then the company was just about to lose 17 Billion dollars. His managers were sticking their heads in the sand, afraid to reveal the truth to him and each other.
Mulally says in the interview, about the next meeting where everybody was finally truthful in their sales forecasting, “At that moment I knew, and everybody else knew, that we had a chance now. You can’t manage a secret. It was all out in the open. And everybody was committed to helping everybody else.”
Is there a double-standard here? It seems that this practice hasn’t left the executive meeting rooms. It’s time to see this put into practice out in the field, especially for the MT82 disaster. Even though it’s going to seriously hurt the sales battle against the Camaro, addressing it would ultimately help ensure customer loyalty, which has always been a critical factor in Ford sales growth.
The following collection of videos show the problem in action, and the first reports of the NHTSA investigation.
An early symptom is considerable whining, then it often won’t shift at all.
NHTSA has officially sent Ford a directive to provide information to support the MT82 investigation. This includes engineering information, information about supporting systems (software, clutch, fluid, etc), and warranty information. The information is required to be submitted by Ford no later than 14 October 2011. Read the request here.
Image: shavings and broken teeth inside transmission
Here are links to the NHTSA reports filed over the MT82 problems:
Follow the complete story on AllFordMustangs.com here: http://www.allfordmustangs.com/forums/2011-mustang-talk/268693-official-2011-mustang-manual-transmission-rough-shifting-thread-329.html (if you have the patience, go back to the first post and follow the bad news along from the start. The number of posts is approaching 5000!). Ford, of course, has said nothing and continues to stay silent on the topic. Meanwhile, more transmissions are breaking, and it appears to be futile to replace them since they just break again after a couple of thousand miles. Dealers are either helpless, or telling customers they drive too aggressively and have caused their own problems.
A very disturbing video: note that his dealer threatened him with loss of warranty coverage if he engaged in any “irregular driving”. And their definition of “irregular driving” is enthusiast driving. Good luck if you happen to do an HPDE weekend… and if you happen to take your BOSS 302 to an HPDE weekend.
This kind of dealer nonsense is exactly that, nonsense. And it’s the reason why people leave Ford for good. And with no solution from Ford for this transmission issue, why take the risk of buying a GT, BOSS; or V-6 Mustang with a manual transmission?
And then there are the dealer problems. Read what happened to the owner of this Mustang: http://www.allfordmustangs.com/forums/2541254-post3195.html. Absolutely rediculous. Why would anybody want any Ford product after this? We know we don’t.
For about $12,000 USD, this crate engine can be yours. Forged and strengthened parts will benefit reliability.
Ford had initially said the engine and other Boss parts would not be available – meaning the Boss would be exclusive. But now that they have changed their minds an enthusiast will be able to build the equivalent of the Boss Mustang very easily. What you don’t want however, given all the terrible reliability problems, is the Getrag MT82 transmission.
Ford Press Release from the original introduction of the Boss 302 engine follows:
HIGH-REVVING FORD 5.0-LITER V8 DELIVERS POWER, SPEED, FLEXIBILITY BEFITTING THE BOSS NAME
- 2012 Ford Mustang Boss 302 engine delivers 440 horsepower and 380 ft.-lbs. of torque without the aid of forced induction
- Purpose-built Boss engine is based on production 2011 Mustang GT 5.0-liter DOHC V8, heavily modified with unique, Boss-specific parts to withstand all-day thrashing
- Revised intake, CNC-machined heads, lightened valvetrain and strengthened reciprocating assembly result in a race-proven engine meeting production durability standards
MONTEREY, Calif., Aug. 13, 2010 – The all-new 5.0-liter dual-overhead camshaft (DOHC) V8 in the 2011 Mustang GT already is the most powerful naturally aspirated production V8 Ford has ever produced. To make it worthy of the Boss name, Ford engineers tweaked more than a few bits of the engine.
They reengineered an entire dynamometer cell to handle the engine’s projected 7,500 rpm redline; put the first engines into Boss 302R race cars and sent them straight onto the track; and they designed a torture test equivalent to running the Daytona 250 race flat-out more than 175 times – in a row.
Only when the 440-hp V8 passed these tests, ensuring maximum power output without sacrificing durability, reliability and drivability, was it worthy of being called a Boss.
Bulletproof and blower-free
Planning began with a small group of engineers within the 5.0-liter V8 team. Starting with open minds and enlisting the help of two members of the original 1969 Boss 302 design team, the group began working its way toward the ultimate evolution of the new 5.0-liter: 440 horsepower and 380 lb.-ft. of torque, along with a broad, flat output curve all the way through its projected 7,500 rpm redline.
The Mustang team knew a supercharger would be the simplest way to extract significant power improvements from the new 5.0-liter V8, but they elected not to pursue forced induction for the 2012 Boss to stay true to the original Boss 302 engine.
“The core group of engineers on the Boss 302 engine understands and respect the heritage of the name and the history behind the original engine,” explains Mike Harrison, Ford V8 engine program manager. “The first Boss 302 was a specially built, free-breathing, high-revving small V8 that gave it certain desirable characteristics on a race course – and we capture that essence in the new engine.”
The team also realized the additional hardware meant more weight, the bane of any racing program and the opposite of what the Boss design team was attempting to achieve. Instead, the same technology that has made the new Mustang GT engine such a formidable force was applied to the Boss 302.
“In keeping with the spirit of the original, the new Boss 302 engine achieves its maximum power output at speeds at or above 7,500 rpm,” says Harrison. “Unlike the original engine, however, low-speed torque and driveability are uncompromised thanks to twin independent variable camshaft timing (Ti-VCT) technology and computer-aided engineering design tools.”
Harrison and his team began exploring Boss 302 concepts starting with the engine’s ability to breathe – essential to the production of horsepower. Because credible track performance requires high power production between 5,000 rpm and 7,000 rpm, the team needed a new approach to intake manifold design.
Borrowing from the Ford Daytona Prototype engines, the resulting short-runners-in-the-box design virtually eliminates lag when the throttle is snapped open while producing peak power output at high rpm.
“The effect of the new intake design is dramatic,” says Harrison. “When I took the prototype car to Mustang Chief Engineer Dave Pericak, he took a short drive, tossed me the keys and said ‘Book it…it’s in the program.’ He knew what we were onto, and that’s really the point where the Boss 302 was born.”
To take advantage of the racing intake manifold, cylinder head airflow was fully optimized by CNC porting the entire intake and exhaust port and combustion chamber. The painstaking machining process takes 2.5 hours per head to complete.
To accompany the higher peak-power engine speed, the team had to engineer a lightweight, high-speed valvetrain and bulletproof reciprocating assembly that would not only hold together for 150,000-plus miles but also produce power at peak rpm.
“What most people don’t realize is that engine stresses increase exponentially as engine speeds rise,” explains Harrison. “So moving up from GT’s 7,000 rpm redline required significant re-engineering of many different parts. Sacrificing reliability and usability over the GT engine was never an option.”
Some of the Boss-specific parts contributing to the Boss 302 V8’s output and durability include:
- Revised composite intake system with shorter runners, inspired by Daytona Prototype racing engines, for high-rpm breathing
- Forged aluminum pistons and upgraded sinter-forged connecting rods for improved strength, needed for the higher combustion pressures and engine speeds
- New high-strength aluminum-alloy cylinder heads with fully CNC-machined ports and chambers for exceptional high-rpm airflow without sacrificing low-speed torque
- Lightened valvetrain components to provide excellent dynamic performance up to speeds well above the engine redline
- Sodium-filled exhaust valves for improved heat dissipation
- Race-specification crankshaft main and rod bearings for higher load capability and improved high-speed durability
- 5W50 full-synthetic oil with engine oil cooler for improved oil pressure and longer-lasting lubrication during extreme racing conditions
- Revised oil pan baffling for improved oil control under racing conditions and during cornering loads greater than 1.0 g
Close connection with race teams
Contrary to normal engine development protocol, the first batch of durability test engines weren’t installed in an engine dyno. Instead, thanks to a request from Ford Racing, they went straight to the track.
“Ford Racing had challenged the Boss engine team to give them the first available Boss 302 engines,” explains Harrison. “They came to us in August 2009 and told us they needed engines as soon as possible to build a limited number of Ford Racing Boss 302R cars for the January Daytona race. They got the engines 12 weeks later and the team got five Boss 302R cars prepped for the January race. This gave us a fantastic opportunity to be able to get full-on race experience with the engine so early in the program.”
The Boss engines have run reliably all season without a single mechanical failure. Boss 302R cars have also racked up the most laps led so far this season in Grand-Am racing.
Using race telemetry, the Boss team has been able to gather on-track data to help optimize engine calibrations, oil pan designs and cooling. In order to engage in virtual racing whenever they needed, the team used the telemetry data to re-create a hot lap at Daytona on the dyno back in Dearborn, allowing further fine-tuning.
“Working with Ford Racing has been invaluable,” said Harrison. “They were a wealth of information for setting up torque and power curves for road racing and for identifying areas of concern during track runs that we wouldn’t have considered if we were just building a hot street engine. Every Boss 302 owner will benefit from their contributions to the program.”
Production engine durability testing
Despite its racing heritage – and the rigors of track-day testing – the Boss 302 V8 is still a production Ford engine, built alongside the 5.0-liter GT engine at Essex Engine Plant in Ontario, Canada. That means it has to meet or exceed all the standard durability testing every Ford engine is required to complete.
The high-winding engine presented a challenge: The engine had no trouble staying together at its redline, but the Ford durability dynamometers weren’t designed to operate at the speeds the Boss engine was capable of.
“Ford had no engine test cells built to run at that kind of sustained speed,” said Harrison. “Ford Racing had one, but it wasn’t instrumented to do production durability testing. So we had to re-engineer the dyno cell with new balancers and jackshafts so the dyno wouldn’t fly apart running at redline hour after hour.”
Once an adequate test stand was configured, the Boss engine was run at its full rated output for tens of millions of cycles, eventually outperforming its specifications at every stage of testing. Engineers calculated that the test regimen was equivalent to running the Daytona 250 race flat-out more than 175 times – in a row.
Team members also devised an additional durability test specific to the Boss 302 engine – one that reflects the unique demands of Boss drivers. The engine was subjected to a regimen simulating 1,500 quarter-mile races typical of events at drag strips across the country.
“Even though the production Boss engine is designed to be very close to a full race engine, it had to achieve the same vehicle durability signoff any other production engine requires,” says Harrison. “Then it went on to get the track durability test signoff too. It’s really an engineering accomplishment that a Boss owner can thrash his car on the track and still expect the same outstanding reliability that the owner of a regular Mustang GT will enjoy.”
Think again: this time the MT82 Getrag transmissions behind both the V-6 and V-8 are repeatedly failing. Whether it’s an assembly error or a design error doesn’t appear to be known… what is obvious is that there is a serious problem occurring with the clutch, slave cylinder, flywheel, and MT82 transmissions in many of the 2011 to 2012 Mustangs. Ford doesn’t know or isn’t saying what the problem is, but has replaced some transmissions multiple times and experienced repeat failures. Some customers are unable to use their cars.
AllFordMustangs.com has a dedicated and moderated thread: of (as of this writing) 2700+ posts on 193+ pages about this problem. Now the problem has come to the attention of Mustang enthusiasts all over.
Including ourselves, whose 2003 Cobra suffered a multitude of electrical and engine problems until the engine finally let go (after which casting sand was found in the block). An enormous amount of aggravation, a personal call to Coletti, and a switch to a better dealer (the first being stupid bastards who drove the car around their lot with clanking noises coming from the broken engine while attempting to diagnose it) finally yielded a 2004-spec replacement engine and (at long last) an improved computer tune that didn’t stall every morning. As an example of how pervasive the engine issue was, three Cobras of identical color were receiving engine transplants at the same time as ours. This was the “final straw” for us after a troubled run of SVT Cobras that included our 1999, which suffered the infamous power loss issue (where what Ford originally engineered was different from what was actually built); our 1996 which suffered from severe over-heating and weak synchros in the then all-new T45 transmission; and our 1994 which suffered various issues on small parts that were SVT-specific. While Ford does engineer products that work well in magazine tests, testing before production begins – and perhaps during - appears to be severely lacking. Which makes for a lousy real-world ownership experience. We also observed the sad Ford GT issues, including the enormously expensive multi-issue recall and numerous overheating situations in track events (including SVT’s own Ford GT, whose engineer told us in person that despite two rebuilds it couldn’t be made to run cool enough to survive SVT’s own track events).
How pervasive is this problem? Here is a quote from the head of Ford Customer Care for Northern CA: “We are seeing Mustangs all over Northern California coming in with these shifting problems… it is no longer a limited number… the engineers and tech hotline are aware that this has become systemic with these cars”.
We no longer have any patience for the same old issues with Mustangs. Any thoughts we may briefly have had of enjoying a Mustang with a fabled Getrag transmission are now at an end.
Getrag MT82 Transmission, engineered in Germany and built in China. Note: some posters in AllFordMustangs.com expressed some ugly prejudice about the supposed inability of Chinese workers to properly build these transmissions, and expressed their opinion that the “American built” Tremec transmissions would be superior because they were built in the USA by union workers. Wrong – the Tremecs including the TR6060 are built in Queretaro, Mexico. Ignorance and prejudice don’t help here.
AutoWeek is the latest magazine to break the press embargo: http://www.autoweek.com/article/20091218/DETROIT/912189996
So instead of having to wait until Dec 28th for the embargo to expire, we are starting to get the goods right now.
How about 412 HP? And 390 torque.
Breathing issues of ye olde “modular” motor are a thing of the past – the intake valves sit vertically atop the engine and the matching runners straighten out after crossing over the top of the engine to provide a straight flow of air into the engine.
And, as we pointed out here from the first spy photos, the timing on the separate intake and exhaust cams is independently variable (oddly, some of the professional automotive sites saw the same pictures and proclaimed this to be a 3-valve SOHC engine – which was so obviously wrong as any careful examination of the spy photos would easily reveal). State of the art – again, and something you can’t do with ye olden pushrod engine (remember that variable cam phasing is very limiting compared to separately variable cam timing).
What’s interesting is the 6R80 auto transmission and MT82-6-speed. This confirms that Ford has gone to 6-speed transmissions across the board, on both the 3.7 and 5 liter engines. We’re looking forward to the details of the MT82 – although AutoWeek might have this designation wrong since the same thing means a totally different transmission in Ford of Europe.
One might ask where the Direct Injection is… but remember that Ford still owes many billions of dollars to various banks. And that the engine development bill is being paid for by the F-150 line, as the 3.7 bill was paid for by the 2011 Explorer development budget. History repeats itself again.
We’ll see the car in Detroit next month, and am looking forward to it.
So much is right about this car, except for the stone-age suspension and overall size. One wonders what is happening in Ford Planning long-term… will budget woes again result in a dumbed-down version of some other Ford chassis… or a host of band-aids to this one to keep it going a little bit longer? And will some Ford wonder-braintrust cut the budget at the last moment again – which earlier this decade cut the already-developed IRS out of the lineup? As is so normal with Ford, we will have to wait a few years more to see – yet again – if Ford will step up the suspension to something representative of this century.