2.4.2012 Electric Ford Focus now available in US
Ford is on track to begin full deliveries of their battery-electric Ford Focus in the US this April, after delivering the first wave of vehicles to commercial partners, such as Google and Microsoft, late last year.
Ford has hinted that they have received numerous pre-orders for the car ahead of its public launch in April. Ford is planning to 'de-risk' the rollout by adopting a 'build-to-order' process, to reduce chances of over-production.
A network of Ford dealerships across the US will each display one demonstration electric Focus for test-driving – and those who wish to order their own will receive one in 4 to 6 weeks.
Mile Tinskey, director of vehicle electrification at Ford, said: "We've taken a different approach to other EV manufacturers in that we are producing the Focus EV on the same production line as the gas, hybrid and plug-in hybrid versions," he explained. "There are simply too many variables impacting the market that we have no control over, so this gives us real flexibility. If the price of crude rises and demand for EVs climbs we can produce more EVs and fewer gas vehicles."
New York, New Jersey and California will be the initial markets for Ford's electric vehicle, with a nationwide rollout planned over the summer and autumn. Towards the end of 2012, a European launch is expected, but is likely to depend on the success in the US.
Tinskey also said that charging times would be faster than that of competing electric vehicles already on the market – cut down to around 3 hours for a full charge. A full charge will return a driving range of around 100 miles, depending on driving style and road conditions, and it will have a top speed of 84 mph.
To enhance the green credentials of owning an electric car, Ford has partnered with solar firm SunPower, to offer a solar panel setup capable of providing electricity for 15,000 miles annually at a cost of less than $10,000, with a 25 year warranty.
It will be a little wait until the electric Ford Focus is available to UK customers. However, as more and more electric vehicles reach the UK market, Ford is likely to launch the Focus here before too long to compete with other manufacturers.
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