It seems as though Ford has been working vigorously in all aspects including new models, redesign, new features, ergonomics, fuel economy, and so much more. This economy has not been stopping them from pumping out more efficient, higher performance, and more gagetized (is that a word?) cars and trucks. The new 2011 Ford Edge is a perfect example of this. As a well desired crossover (the combination of an SUV and passenger car), the Ford Edge is paving the way with an attractive body style and more features. Rather than waiting for the competition to make one step ahead, Ford is constantly making improvements and addressing past problems and desires to further develop the Edge into not just a crossover but the crossover to be reckoned with.
Ford announced that 400,000 Edge crossovers have been sold since late 2006 which is pretty impressive. Ford feels this success has much to do with the Edge's styling which its competitors seem to be having difficult matching up with. For 2011, Ford has added a few new engine options as well as a remodeled interior. We will discuss this in detail.
Ford researchers have confirmed that the number one reason buyers choose the Edge over its competitors is because of its attractive design, not its efficient V6 or impressive technology.
For 2011, the Edge has continued its likable looks with with a newly designed front fascia and chrome front grille that looks very sleek and clean. New LED running lights seems to be the new fab and the 2011 Edge is no outsider. And yes, those good looking wheels are a factory option. You can also choose from a total of four other new wheel options, including 18, 20, and even 22-inch forged aluminum wheels. Want to buy a new set of tires for those 22-inch wheels though?
As we move to the interior, the 2010 model was not so ahead of the competition but the 2011 Edge has a redesigned dash which is similar to the 2011 Mustang. The center of the dash features those well designed and sleek climate and audio controls designed by Sony. Ford calls these new buttons touch capacitive since there are no buttons to push or levers to slide. A simple light touch of your finger will trigger the electronics to do the rest.
Another cool feature of the new Edge's interior is the instrument cluster hiding behind the steering wheel which Ford seems to be implementing into most of their new models. Two small LCD screens are on either side of the dial speedometer. The left screen displays pertinent vehicle information such as average fuel economy, traction control settings, temperature gauge and tachometer, etc. The right screen displays a summed up version of the information displayed on the large eight-inch touch screen in the center of the dash. These screens are color coded to help the driver recognize which function is displayed - red for the entertainment system, green for navigation, blue for climate control, and yellow for the hands-free phone system. This screen also will show turn-by-turn directions from the navigation system. Two five way switches located on the steering wheel control each of these screens.
The new MyTouch system Ford has developed is also debuted in the new 2011 Edge. This system can recognize over 10,000 different voice commands which will virtually allow you to control nearly everything in the vehicle without y0ur hands leaving the steering wheel. The navigation system has also been upgraded from the DVD or hard-drive based system to a simple SD card setup. This navigation system will set you back $800. If you prefer to do without the navigation, the standard system comes with Sync Services free for the first three years, similar to the new Ford Explorer.
With all these new additions, Ford also solved some simple problems from the previous 2010 Edge. One is the noise inside the cabin. The 2012 Edge is significantly quieter than the previous model which is due to the increased baffles mounted in areas previously vacant. A thicker firewall is also a necessity to isolate the cabin from engine noise. Plastic covering the engine also helps to direct noise away from its owner.
If you have driven a 2010 Edge, you will notice the lack of confidence in the brakes. Ford has solved this by building a firmer pedal feel backed by larger rear rotors as well as new calipers and pads.
The suspension has also been tweaked to accommodate the larger wheels. New springs, shock absorbers, and stabilizer bars were added to adjust for the new unsprung weight wich surprisingly is very smooth even with the 22-inch wheels.
Unfortunately, Ford has yet to release an Ecoboost four-cylinder engine. You will have to wait until late next year to see this as an available option. For the available engines now, there is the 3.7-liter V6 with 305 horsepower and 280 lb-ft of torque in the Sport trim which will give you 18 mpg city and 25 mpg highway. The SE, SEL, and Limited models all come equipped with a 3.5 liter V6 with 285 hp and 253 lb-ft of torque that will give you 19 mpg city and 27 mpg highway. This power it transmitted to either the front wheels or an all-wheel drive system through a six-speed automatic transmission.
Autoblog's Zach Bowman recounts his 2011 Ford Edge experience: Ford had us out to the hills of Tennessee to put the Edge through its paces on a variety of roads, from full-on interstates to twisty single-lane threads of asphalt, and rarely did it disappoint. Lean on the throttle in the Sport and you're rewarded with acceleration that's quick enough to get you to speed without feeling bored, but slow enough to keep you from getting into too much trouble. Down the undulating apexes of Tennessee's Natchez Trace Parkway, the Sport felt more planted compared to its SEL sibling, but we're not entirely sure the average Edge owner would note any differences in the suspension setup. They would, however, note the firmer, more capable brakes in both vehicles compared to the 2010 model. It's a big - and welcome - difference.
Now lets talk price. Ford will hand over the keys of an Edge SE starting at $27,220 but if you want all the goodies of the Sport trim, you will have to hand over $36,995 and possibly over $40,000 for even more options.
[Source: Autoblog, Zach Bowman, Ford]