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  Ford Thunderbird

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Country of origin:United States
Produced from:2002 - 2005
Source:Company press release
Last updated:Before December 1st, 2004
Download: All images
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Click here to download printer friendly versionAfter an absence in Ford's line up the Thunderbird returned in the 2002 line up. The 2002 Thunderbird is the production version of the Thunderbird concepts shown on the international car shows in 1999 and 2000. The styling is clearly inspired by the first Thunderbird. The designers of the modern Thunderbird took great care to borrow classic styling cues, but to never lose the modern look. Among other details, the car's two-seat configuration, hood scoop, round headlamps, egg-crate grille and porthole windows all pay homage to the past with 21st century materials, technology and design language.
As pushrods have gone the way of the poodle skirt, all 2002 Thunderbirds will be equipped with a smooth-operating, all-aluminium 3.9-liter DOHC V-8. The engine produces an 252 horsepower at 6,100 rpm and peak torque of 267 ft. lbs. at 4,300 rpm and uses a new generation powertrain electronic controller (PTEC). The engine was designed along with a specially engineered close-ratio, five-speed automatic transmission that provides performance and efficiency along with minimal levels of noise, vibration and harshness (NVH).
The Thunderbird is the first Ford Motor Company North American Car program born of the system called C3P - computer-aided design, computer-aided engineering, computer-aided manufacturing and product information management. C3P improves quality of the Thunderbird from the get-go by providing more accurate, timely computer images of car and components before manufacturing. C3P also is a cost- and time-saving process that reduces vehicle development time and the number of costly prototype vehicles needed for testing.
Although the design evokes memories of a simpler time, it won't take 50 yards of driving in a new 2002 Thunderbird to transport one back to the future. The new Thunderbird uses the latest engineering technologies to instill confidence in the driver.It's a well-balanced, rear-wheel drive car that utilizes a rigid, computer-engineered chassis and a fine-tuned four-wheel independent suspension system employing lightweight materials to reduce unsprung weight and improve response. The rack-and-pinion steering gear is a variable-assist design, providing lower turning efforts at parking speeds and higher-level road feel at highway speeds. Four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes (ABS) are standard and employ electronic brake force distribution (EBD). The brake rotors are vented for optimal performance and endurance and calipers are dual piston-type for quick response and evenly distributed pressure.

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  Article Image gallery (8) Specifications User Comments (2)