97up-list-digest Monday, July 13 1998 Volume 01 : Number 149



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Ford Truck Enthusiasts - 1997 and Newer Trucks and Vans
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In this issue:

RE: FTE 97up - delivery date - start to finish
FTE 97up - Explorer suspension upgrades?
FTE 97up - RE: Customer Appreciation Rebate
FTE 97up - Questions about gas tank, tow package, anti-theft system, CD changer
FTE 97up - ExtraCare vs. PremiumCare warranty on Ford F-150

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Date: Sun, 12 Jul 1998 13:27:32 GMT
From: "Russell A. Hunter"
Subject: RE: FTE 97up - delivery date - start to finish

>Date: Thu, 9 Jul 1998 21:51:54 -0500
>From: "Roy E. Springer"
>Subject: FTE 97up - delivery date - start to finish
>
>99 F250SD
>Ordered 5/4/98
>Arrived railhead 7/5/98
>Arrived dealer 7/8/98
>Delivered 7/9/98
>
>Sorry to hear the dealer saying that dates are stretching out quite a bit
>now.
>
>Thanks to ? who recommended tracking by rail.
>If yours is coming via Union Pacific the URL I bookmarked is:
>
>http://www.ford-trucks.com//lc/lc.php?action=do&link=http://my.uprr.com/pub/pet
>
>You need to know the car # from the dealer printout.
>
>Roy

Does anyone know how to track a rail car being pulled by CSX? I checked
their web site and it looks like you have to be a customer of CSX to do it.
Is there another way?


Russell A. Hunter
rahunter traveller.com


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Date: Sun, 12 Jul 1998 11:51:04 EDT
From: LexRex aol.com
Subject: FTE 97up - Explorer suspension upgrades?

My Explorer's suspension is way too soft for me. I know this is a common
complaint, judging by comments in truck magazines (which state that Explorers
have a "Conestoga wagon" suspension) and my dealer, who shrugged apathetically
when I mentioned it. Low speed corners throw are unbearably nausiating. Other
SUVs are not known for this.

Does anyone have experience or recommendations in the Explorer suspension
upgrade department?

I've already switched to Bilstein shocks and I'm going to Kenny Brown
Performance to have it lowered 1 1/2 inch. and get Dunlop tires Will this
work? Any better ideas?

Thanks. It's a '97, two wheel drive, V-8, towing package.

Jack
LexRex aol.com
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Date: Sun, 12 Jul 1998 17:05:29 -0700
From: Nathan Bernard
Subject: FTE 97up - RE: Customer Appreciation Rebate

If your order was in before the 7th you will still get the Rebate if the dealer has done all the paperwork to guarantee it.

Nathan Bernard



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From: Russell A. Hunter[SMTP:rahunter Traveller.COM]
Sent: Wednesday, July 08, 1998 2:59 AM
To: Union Auto
Subject: Customer Appreciation Rebate

Nathan,

I heard that Ford extended the Customer Appreciation Rebate past July 7 if
you ordered the new vehicle before the July 7 deadline. Is this true? Thanks.


Russell A. Hunter
rahunter traveller.com




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Date: Sun, 12 Jul 1998 22:43:00 -0700
From: Tiger
Subject: FTE 97up - Questions about gas tank, tow package, anti-theft system, CD changer

Hello. This is my first post to the Ford F-150 list server which I just
joined. I'm also posting this on Usenet, which I hope is OK.

I had been looking for a car for months and thanks to many helpful people
on Usenet, especially in the Ford groups (several of whom are probably on
this list), I finally bought a 98 Ford F-150 Super XLT 4.6L V8 with
automatic. I know very little about cars or trucks, so I'm still learning.

After having my questions answered about gas mileage on a 3.55 limited slip
axle and how to drive my new 98 Ford F-150 SuperCab XLT during the break-in
period, I've moved onto some other questions regarding other aspects of my
new truck that I'm still confused about after looking through my truck manual.

1. GAS TANK. I know the F-150 comes with a 25.1 gallon gas tank, but how do
the markings on the Fuel Gauge relate to how much gas is actually in the
tank? In other words, what's the reserve fuel capacity below where the
needle points to empty?

2. TOW PACKAGE. When I ordered options XH9 (3.55 ratio limited slip axle)
and 535 (trailer towing package), I was under the impression that it came
with everything I needed to tow should I decide to do that. However, a
friend looking at my truck said "where's the tow hitch on the bumper?" All
I see is an electrical outlet and a large square connector beneath the
bumper which is where I thought the trailer ball attached. I thought the
ball was supposed to come with the tow package. I guess not. How is it
supposed to work?

3. ANTI-THEFT SYSTEM. I admit I didn't properly research the features of
the anti-theft system. I went solely by the recommendation of another Ford
F-150 owner who told me it was cheaper to have an anti-theft system factory
installed in the truck. All I asked the salesman about the anti-theft
system was "if I get the remote keyless entry/anti-theft system do I need
any other anti-theft system installed?" and he said no. So I paid an extra
$225 for option 904 (remote keyless entry/anti theft). When I took delivery
of the vehicle, I asked how all the features of the anti-theft system
worked. This guy said "What features? All it does is prevent someone with
the wrong key from starting your vehicle." Huh? Doesn't any key do that?

On pages 34-35 of the manual, it describes a "Perimeter Alarm System (if
equipped)". I assume this is what I got? It says "when unauthorized entry
occurs, the system will flash the parking lamps and the theft indicator
lamp, and chirp the horn". That's really helpful... Unauthorized entry how
and where?

Somehow I feel like I flushed $225 down the drain for this feature. I
thought I was getting something comparable to a $350 Alpine system I
priced. Now if I get the Alpine system, the $225 system has to be removed
or disabled?

4. 6-CD CHANGER. I'm very glad I paid the extra $340 for this. I found out
that I would've had to pay about $400 to get a new cassette/CD changer set
from Circuit City. AFAIK, it's a Clarion system. I priced how much an extra
CA-122 6-CD magazine costs and I nearly fainted... $35 each! Does anyone
else with this 6-CD changer know where to find these CD magazines cheaper?

5. RADIO ANTENNA. I never bothered to look at the antenna until after I
bought the truck. I noticed that it is not powered and doesn't retract. Are
all Ford F-150 antennas this way, or did I forget to ask for a power
antenna option?

Again, I couldn't find the answers to these questions in my Ford manuals. I
hope I didn't miss them. If there is a Ford F-150 FAQ out there that I
should read, please point me to it so I won't have to bore people with such
basic questions. I appreciate everyone's patience and help. Thanks!

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Date: Sun, 12 Jul 1998 22:45:37 -0700
From: Tiger
Subject: FTE 97up - ExtraCare vs. PremiumCare warranty on Ford F-150

Hello again. I was hoping people could give me some opinions on whether the
Ford extended warranties are worthwhile on a new 98 Ford F-150 SuperCab
XLT. Recently several people have given me mixed advice, which is usually
either "extended warranties are rarely worth the money you pay for them" to
"they are well worth the money if you plan to keep your truck a long time".

Initially, I was quoted $1200 for an extra 3 years/30,000 miles (6
years/60,000 miles total) of warranty, which I immediately rejected.
However, the finance manager (the nicest guy at the dealer IMHO) gave me a
more reasonable figure. He showed me a slide rule that he uses to figure
warranty costs. He said for the extra 3/30,000 he would charge me $561 for
ExtraCare and $701 for PremiumCare. (His slide rule showed a cost of $435
and $575 respectively, and he said he had to charge $126 over that.)

With no side by side comparison sheet of ExtraCare vs. PremiumCare, I
marked the 2 brochures to find out the differences.

PremiumCare covers the following that ExtraCare does not:

Electrical
- - Charge and volt gagues
- - Clock, electric
- - Coil, ignition
- - Mirrors, motorized (electrical only -- not glass/housing damage or breakage)
- - Temperature gauge

Front Suspension
- - Load leveler suspension system
- - Springs (front and rear)

Air Conditioning and Heating
- - Heater control cables
- - Instrument panel registers and air ducts

High-Tech
- - Anti-theft alarm, factory installed
- - Instrument cluster, electronic (excluding dash pad)

Ford Audio
- - Antenna, radio (base assembly)
- - Brackets, cables, and wiring
- - Controls, rear seat
- - Cellular phone, receiver, handset, speaker assembly, and antenna (factory
installed)
- - Radio (AM, AM/FM), speakers, cassette player, digital CD player, graphic
equalizer, premium sound amplifier (factory installed)

I think I have the anti-theft alarm (as useless as it may be) and the
premium sound system with 6-CD changer, but I don't have the cellular phone
options. I suppose these are worthwhile items that PremiumCare covers. I
noticed that ExtraCare has an additional exclusion on the Instrument
Cluster of clock, radio, and graphic equalizer. (I don't recall seeing a
graphic equalizer option listed.)

I'm aware that normal wear and tear items are not covered under the
warranty and that there is a $100 deductible on each repair, which makes
the likelihood of saving more money than the warranty costs unlikely short
of engine or transmission trouble. Of course Ford-bashers like to say that
an extended warranty is always a good idea on a "Fix Or Repair Daily"
vehicle. I believe a lower deductible is available at higher cost.

Are there any reputable third-party warranties with better coverage and
comparable costs that I should consider? Or should I just take my chances?

For instance, any ideas how much it would cost to repair my 6-CD changer
which is certain to wear out before 6 years given how much I'll use it? Is
the average electrical/high tech repair (the things most likely to go
wrong) under $100 or more like $200 or $300 a piece?

Thanks.


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