New Ford Mondeo - F1 Technology For Refined Automatic | Part Four

Durashift 5-tronic: F1 Technology For Refined Automatic

F1-style, steering-wheel-mounted pushbutton shifting now adds to the sophistication of Ford Mondeo’s five-speed Durashift 5-tronic automatic transmission.

Durashift 5-tronic operates as a conventional automatic transmission, with the added freedom to select gears manually using its sequential ‘Select-Shift Manual’ feature. The driver can now use new steering-wheel-mounted button shift actuators instead of the gear lever and further improve control by keeping both hands on the wheel.

While in manual mode, the driver controls shifting by pushing one of two buttons on the steering wheel that signal the transmission to change up or down. Alternatively, flicking the gearlever rearward toward the "+" sign instructs the transmission to move into a higher gear, while flicking forward toward the "–" sign sends an instruction to downshift.

Durashift 5-tronic features an Automatic Transmission Control Unit (ATCU), which delivers new levels of shifting smoothness and allows the transmission to adapt to the driver’s style or varying road conditions. Durashift 5-tronic selects from five different operational modes depending on conditions or driver demands, allowing it not only to act like a manual transmission but also to think like one.

Specially engineered for higher torque engines, Durashift 5-tronic can be specified with Mondeo’s two Duratorq TDCi common-rail diesel engines, or 170-PS Duratec V6 petrol engine.

Refined Environment: New Interior Features and Craftsmanship

To create a relaxed and comfortable environment, an impressive collection of new premium interior features is available in new Mondeo including: heated and ventilated climate seats, colour, touch-screen DVD navigation system, automatic headlamps, rain-sensing wipers and new Sony™ audio systems – all ‘firsts’ in a European Ford.

"In 2000, the all-new Mondeo introduced a leap in craftsmanship for Ford that was obvious at first glance," said Chris Bird, Ford of Europe director of design. "With new Mondeo, we have built on that achievement with new luxury features and touches of craftsmanship which are evident not only to the eye, but also to the ear and to the touch. It builds on the strengths it inherited."

Most noticeable at first glance is new Mondeo’s revised centre console, with new levels of quality clear from the look and feel of the thoughtfully-placed switches and controls, high quality finish and the larger Sony™ audio systems, available in a Ford for the first time.

Mondeo’s new climate seat option is also a first in its class. A feature more commonly found in luxury cars, climate seats augment heating with ventilation in warmer conditions, to keep occupants cool and comfortable. Climate seats have a choice of five heating or ventilation levels. Rear-seat passengers are not left out either, with Mondeo’s new heated rear seat option, another first for a European Ford.

Another new luxury convenience feature is Mondeo’s rain-sensing wipers, with automatic "afterwipe" windscreen-cleaning feature.

New colours, materials and textures add to the feeling of plushness and calmness. with which Mondeo reassuringly surrounds its occupants. Upgraded leathers and new fabrics, including Alcantara sports seats on ST220, convey a feeling of luxury, and other surfaces in the Mondeo interior feature revised graining and new soft-touch finishes.

Air-conditioning remains standard on all Mondeo models, with improved electronic temperature control on Ghia, Ghia X and ST220.

Mondeo’s reliably high level of safety continues with its standard Intelligent Protection System, comprising six airbags, active head restraints, anti-submarining front seats, ABS and emergency brake assist. ESP is also available as standard on all V6 models.

continues... | Part Five
Published 31 May 2003 Melanie Carter

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