Ford Outlines its Electric Future ~ Hybrid Car Review
Hybrid Car Review: Ford Outlines its Electric Future

Monday, January 12, 2009

Ford Outlines its Electric Future

Possible significant in the long term, Ford has outlined its short term future in the electric vehicle marketplace. Ford hopes to bring four electric vehicles to market by 2012.

The will start with a battery powered Transit Connect van for commercial fleet customers, followed up by an electric Ford Focus powered by lithium-ion battery packs in 2011 for everyone.

Then a plug-in hybrid and third generation hybrid will make its way to market in 2012. Considering Ford reportedly dropped the cost by 30% between their first generation and their second generation hybrid system, those last two may be more significant in the near term than the first two.

But, still, many will be excited to see an all electric Ford Focus on the road. With a lithium-ion battery in place, the viability and use of E-REV, plug-in hybrids and electric vehicles will expand. But with a range of only 100 miles, the electric Focus will be of limited utility to most. Ford says it is aimed at urban customers and expects to sell 5 to 10,000 units a year.

Ford is partnering with Magna, a global auto supplier in Canada, to pair up its global vehicle platform with Magna-engineered battery electric vehicles (BEV) components and systems (link to pdf image).

"Magna is a world-class automotive supplier that’s an ideal partner for our BEV," says Nancy Gioia, Ford director of Sustainable Mobility Technology. "Our strategy absolutely depends on forging alliances with key suppliers whose expertise complements our extensive experience and global production capabilities. Developing these new technologies requires a major investment, so it’s especially important to have strong supplier alliances."

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