Ford Probe

1997 Ford Probe: The Ford and Mazda design teams merged once again to give the Ford Probe a complete redesign for the 1993 model year. As before, the Probe was to share its under-structure with Mazda's MX-6 and 626. Mazda engineered the engine, transmission, and chassis, while Ford engineered the body and interior. Technically, the second generation Probe is 60% Mazda and 40% Ford. Despite the car being extended 2 inches and widened 4 inches, it was 125 pounds lighter than the first generation Probe. The second generation Probe was introduced in August 1992 as a 1993 model. It went on sale in Europe in the spring of 1994, filling the gap left there by Ford in that market sector since the demise of the Capri seven years earlier.

The base model started at just over US $13,000 and came standard with the 2.0L Mazda FS-DE 16-valve 4-cylinder engine, performance instrument cluster with tachometer and full gauge compliment, and an electronic AM/FM stereo. The sportier GT model started at $15,504 and came standard with the 2.5L Mazda KL-DE 24-valve V6 engine, low profile P225/50VR16 91V Goodyear VR50 Gatorback tires, 4-wheel disc brakes, unique front and rear fascias, fog lights, 5-spoke aluminum wheels, leather-wrapped steering wheel, and driver-seat power lumbar/seat back side bolster adjustment. Both engines featured dual overhead cam designs with the choice of a 5-speed manual transmission or a 4-speed automatic transmission.

Two automatic transmissions were available in the Probe. At first both engines shared the same automatic transmission, the Ford F-4EAT transmission, but from 1994 onwards this changed. The V6 engine continued to use the 4EAT, but the 2.0 L I4 engine used a different automatic transmission, the Ford CD4E transmission. It was sourced by Ford, and manufactured at Ford's Batavia Transmission plant in Batavia, Ohio.

A new SE (Sport Edition) trim level was available for 1995 and 1996. It included the GT front fascia (without fog lamps), unique 15-inch (380 mm) aluminum wheels, P205/55R15 BSW and Sport Edition "SE" nomenclature.

In Japan, the 2.5 L V6 was the higher performance KL-ZE. In Europe and America, the 2.5 L V6 was a lower performance KL-DE (often incorrectly referred to as the KL-03) and the 2.0 L was the FS. The primary difference of the Japanese version is that it produced 36 hp (27 kW) more power through higher compression pistons, aggressive camshafts, intake manifold and head. It also lacked an emissions control component called Exhaust gas recirculation that is required by law in North America and Europe.

In a coast to coast road test by Automobile Magazine in search of the best cars in the world, the Probe GT scored third place, right behind an $80,000 Mercedes-Benz and an $80,000 BMW. In the article, the Probe listed at about $15,000.

Source: Wikipedia, 2013

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