(from Ford Press Release)
The 2002 Thunderbird is a production version of the Thunderbird concept
car that stole the spotlight at auto shows in 1999 and 2000.
Although the design evokes memories of a simpler time, it wonít 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.
Itís 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
Thunderbird comes standard with 17-inch cast aluminum wheels and
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.
An optional all-speed traction control system helps ensure driver
confidence in adverse road conditions. The system provides excellent
start-up on slippery surfaces and improves cornering stability.
As pushrods have gone the way of the poodle skirt, all 2002 Thunderbirds
will be equipped with a smooth-operating, all-aluminum 3.9-liter DOHC
V-8. The engine produces an estimated 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).