Detroit Bureau on Twitter

Posts Tagged ‘ford electric vehicles’

Ford Launches Plug-n-Play Focus Electric on Facebook

Charging across the country with new online game.

by on Apr.12, 2012

Ford will let Facebook friends plug-n-play with a new game based on the Focus Electric.

According to a recent study we reported on earlier in the week, young folks are waiting longer than ever to get their driver’s licenses – and one reason, said the researchers, is that they’re apparently too busy online.

So, no wonder Ford has decided to launch what you might call the plug-n-play version of the maker’s new Focus Electric, an online game that will allow virtual drivers to take a digital road trip with their BFFs – in this case, their Best Facebook Friends.

Subscribe Now! It's Free!

“This is a great way for consumers to both have fun and learn about the new Focus Electric at the same time,” said Chad D’Arcy, Focus Electric marketing manager. “We want to offer people the opportunity to experience the car now, especially those on Facebook who have supported us for so long.”

Dubbed “Plug N Play in Electric City with the 2012 Focus Electric,” the game allows up to five people to take a trip in the battery version of Ford’s compact sedan.  The maker is betting it’s a good way to spread the word about the Focus Electric which officially went on sale in California last December – though it is only beginning to be rolled out now in any real volume.


Ford Insists its Battery Cars Will be Safe

Maker has taken added steps to prevent post-crash fires.

by on Dec.14, 2011

A Ford Focus Electric using a high-speed charger.

Clearly concerned by the controversy that’s erupted over fires involving the Chevrolet Volt’s lithium-ion batteries, Ford Motor Co. officials pointedly stressed that they have gone to extremes to ensure there won’t be problems when they launch an array of lithium-powered products in the coming year.

Ford provided an inside look at their “electrified” line-up today, a mix of hybrids, plug-in hybrids and pure battery-electric vehicles, or BEVs, that the maker hopes will position it as one of the leaders in the growing green automotive niche.

Get Your Efficiency Here!

“The goal is to focus on affordable, sustainable technologies, not for 100s of customers or thousands, but for millions,” said Derrick Kuzak, Ford’s global product development chief, who added that the maker “will triple the production capacity for electrified vehicles to 100,000 by 2013.”


Ford May Build Battery Cars in China

Maker may also add Lincoln to its Chinese line-up.

by on Sep.26, 2011

Ford may produce battery cars, like the C-Max Energi plug-in, in China, suggests CEO Alan Mulally.

Ford Motor Co. may try to tap into the potentially huge market for electric vehicles in China, echoing the strategy of its rival General Motors.

Ford has already committed to producing at least five battery-electric vehicles, like the Ford Focus Electric, and plug-in hybrids, like the C-Max Energi, for the U.S. and Europe.  But some analysts believe the market for battery cars could be even bigger in China as the Asian nation takes steps to reduce pollution and minimize its dependence upon foreign oil.

Building vehicles in China would sidestep hefty import duties and qualify Ford for significant incentives the Beijing government has authorized for domestically-produced battery cars.

Subscribe Now! Free!

“As we move to more electrification, you’re going to see more hybrids, plug-in hybrids and all-electric” cars,” Ford CEO Alan Mulally said during an interview with Bloomberg TV during a visit to Chongqing, China to mark the groundbreaking of the automaker’s new transmission plant.


Ford CEO Mulally Lands Laughs with Letterman

Gets mileage plugging Ford’s electric cars.

by on Aug.04, 2011

Ford CEO Alan Mulally pitches David Letterman on the advantages of electric propulsion.

It wasn’t your typical auto show, but Ford CEO Alan Mulally was as boyishly exuberant as always when he rolled onto the stage for The Late Show With David Letterman in a new Ford Focus Electric – Letterman himself behind the wheel.

Grabbing a seat on the New York set normally reserved for movie stars  like Emma Stone, and other celebrities, Mulally used his appearance to promote Ford’s fast-growing line-up of hybrids and battery cars, including the Focus Electric, which will hit market next year.


Deeply invested in motor sports but also a fan of electric power, the often acerbic Letterman could find nothing but praise for Mulally, starting out by trading stories about their early jobs – both had bagged groceries and delivered newspapers – before turning to the executive’s experience at Boeing.  Asked to list the aircraft he’d worked on – everything from the old 707 to the more modern 777 – Mulally drew an enthusiastic response from the audience.


Ford Lines up European Buyers for Transit Connect Electric Van

Fleet buyers helping push demand for battery power.

by on Mar.29, 2011

The Transit Connect Electric has a range of up to 80 miles per full charge, and can be recharged using 110 or 220 volts.

Ford Motor Company and Azure Dynamics have announced that the Norwegian Post has becomes the first European customer of the Ford Transit Connect Electric, placing an order for 20 of the battery-electric vans, or BEVs.

“The Norwegian Post will be an environmental leader in the mail and logistics industry by taking advantage of the latest technology available,” said Dag Mejdell, CEO of the Scandinavian nation’s postal service.

“In signing a contract for delivery of the new Ford Transit Connect Electric, the Norwegian Post is taking an important step towards its goal of reducing 150,000 (metric) tonnes of CO2 annually,” Mejdell said, noting his agency has an option to purchase more.

Subscribe Now - It's Free!

Norwegian Post is the largest provider of mail and logistics services and the biggest employer in Norway.

Ford and its partner Azure Dynamics, of Oak Park, MI recently began a pilot program for the Transit Connect Electric last December.  (Click Here for more.) A conversion of the standard Transit Connect van, sales officially begin in the summer of 2011.


Ford Teases Launch of Focus Electric

Official unveiling scheduled for Consumer Electronics Show.

by on Jan.03, 2011

A close-up of the 2012 Ford Focus Electric reveals the battery charging port on the front fender.

Hoping to get potential buyers to plug into the upcoming launch of its new Focus Electric, Ford is offering this little tease of its new battery car, which first popped up on its Facebook site.

The Focus Electric will actually be the second battery-electric vehicle, or BEV, in the Ford line-up, following months behind the launch of the Transit Connect Electric, a battery-powered version of the maker’s compact commercial van.  All told, the Detroit maker plans to roll out five BEVs and plug-in hybrids over the next several years.

While the 2012 Ford Focus Electric will make an appearance at the upcoming Detroit Auto Show, it will actually debut several days earlier at the annual Consumer Electronics Show, in Las Vegas.  Ford has been a major player at CES and, yet again, CEO Alan Mulally will serve as keynote speaker, for the third time since he joined the automaker in 2006.

In the Know: Subscribe Now!

Ford is keeping details of the Focus Electric under wraps until Friday morning, but it has provided a few clues in recent months.  The compact model will reply on a lithium-ion battery pack expected to yield somewhere in the range of 100 miles per charge – though the exact figure could be 20% less using revised federal testing procedures (as Nissan learned when it launched the new Leaf).


Ford Betting On Partners As It Tests Battery Car Market

Maker ready to go it alone if market demand grows.

by on Dec.07, 2010

Ford will sell the Transit Connect Electric for $57,400, and expects demand for at least 700 during the coming year.

If it weren’t for the banner blowing in the wind over the front door one might not realize there was a revolution brewing inside the small, non-descript warehouse, along an industrial strip in the Detroit suburbs.

Operated by AM General, the company better known for producing the military’s trademark HUMMVEE, the facility has been quietly converting Ford’s little Transit Connect van to run on electric propulsion.  The first several dozen Transit Connect Electric vans will be reaching customers before year’s end.  And if they prove successful, 700 or 700 could follow in 2011.

Subscribe Now! Click Here!

In automotive terms, that’s not much, but as the market for electric vehicles slowly begins to ramp up, that’s nonetheless a significant development suggests Sherif Marakby, who oversees Ford’s electrification program.

The maker had made a hefty investment in battery power back in the 1990s – reluctantly, under pressure from California regulators who had hoped they could mandate a battery car market.  The project failed and Ford, like its competitors, slashed its investment in the technology.  Now, however, battery power seems to be coming back, in part due to new regulations, but also because of new technologies, as well as public concerns about issues as far flung as global warming and the import of Mideast oil.


Ford, Oregon Utility to Prepare for EVs

The automaker and Portland General Electric will share information, promote electric vehicles.

by on Aug.24, 2010

Ford's first electric vehicle will be a version of the Transit Connect utility van.

Ford is partnering up with Portland General Electric to prepare the Portland area and the rest of the Pacific Northwest for the arrival of electric vehicles.

Ford plans to roll out two electric vehicles during the next two years, as well as a plug-in hybrid vehicle.

Ford will supply PGE with information on charging needs so that the utility can ensure that the electrical grid can support the new range of electric vehicles. The automaker and utility will partner on consumer education outreach regarding EVs.

Electrified coverage!

Additionally, Ford will work with universities, including Portland State, on studies of urban mobility and integration of energy and sustainable design.  (more…)

Ford Adding Jobs as it Ramps Up EV Program

Investing $135 million, setting up Michigan center of excellence.

by on May.24, 2010

Transit Connect Electric will be the first step in the maker's expanding electric vehicle program.

With its first battery-electric vehicle set to go into production later this year, Ford Motor Co. is announcing big steps to move its “electrification’ program forward, including a $135 million investment and the creation of 220 new jobs.

Michigan will become its new “center of excellence” for the design, engineering and production of future battery-based vehicles, Mark Fields, Ford’s president of The Americas, announced from the maker’s Rawsonville (Michigan) Assembly Plant, a facility that will produce a battery-electric version of the new Focus model.

Meanwhile, production of hybrid battery packs will now be moved from Mexico to the Detroit area.

Sign Up...It's Free!

“Electrified vehicles are a key part of our plan to offer a full lineup of green vehicles, and we are building a center of excellence in the U.S., here in Michigan, to keep Ford on the cutting edge,” said Fields. “Today’s announcement is another important step in our larger strategy to launch a family of hybrids, plug-in hybrids and full electric vehicles around the world.”

Along with conventional hybrid-electric vehicles, such as the Fusion Hybrid – which was named North American Car of the Year, last January – Ford plans to launch two models that will run solely on battery power: the Focus Electric and the Transit Connect Electric.