Ford is investing $135 million in the design, engineering and production of key components – including advanced battery systems – for its next-generation hybrid-electric vehicles going into production this year.
For example, Ford’s battery-testing capabilities will double by 2013 – to a total of 160 individual battery-test channels. This includes investing in more of the highly specialized machines that can test and simulate everything from power and performance to life and thermal behavior over a complete range of temperatures and possible operating conditions.
Also, Ford is dedicating a 285,000-square-foot research and development lab in Dearborn, Mich., to focus almost entirely on hybrids and electrification. The building formerly known as the Advanced Engineering Center is renamed the Ford Advanced Electrification Center and houses most of the 1,000 engineers working on hybrid and electrification programs.
Ford continues to build its electrified team with 60 engineers hired in the past year and dozens more positions to be filled this year.
Ford is launching five electrified vehicles this year as part of its power of choice strategy to deliver leading fuel economy across its lineup and triple electrified vehicle production capacity by 2013.
The five electrified vehicles Ford is launching fall in line with its goal of providing customers with power of choice when it comes to fuel-efficient vehicles. The five electrified vehicles are:
Focus Electric: Production began late 2011; America’s most fuel-efficient compact with 110 MPGe city; charge time of four hours with the available 240-volt charging station, which is nearly half the time as Nissan Leaf
C-MAX Hybrid: EPA-certified to deliver 47 mpg highway, 47 mpg city – at least 3 mpg better than Toyota Prius v – and 47 mpg combined with more performance and technology, and all at a $1,300-lower base price
C-MAX Energi plug-in hybrid: Coming this fall; a projected electric-mode miles per gallon equivalent that is more than three times that of Toyota Prius plug-in hybrid per EPA testing methods; 95 MPGe; total range of 550 miles
Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid: Will begin production by the end of 2012; aiming to be the most fuel-efficient midsize car in the world