Eric Kuehn: Twenty-Six-Year Veteran of Ford Started on Cars of Yesterday, Now Focused on Cars of Tomorrow
Eric Kuehn, chief engineer, Global Electrified Programs
Eric Kuehn, chief engineer for Ford’s global electrified programs, started tinkering with cars long before he had a driver’s license. As a 13-year-old in northern Michigan, Kuehn took it as a challenge to get the former family car – a 1966 Chevrolet Impala – running again.
The work also kept him occupied in the rural setting.
“I was born in Dearborn and lived in Detroit until sixth grade,” Kuehn said. “When my dad retired, we moved up north. My parents bought about 40 acres of land that was surrounded by Huron National Forest. The nearest house was a mile away. So it wasn’t like you could just jump on your bike and ride to someone’s house.”
Kuehn spent about a year on the restoration project, repairing the car’s body, refurbishing the interior and getting the engine and mechanical parts in working condition. He sold it and dove into his next project: a 1970 Ford Mustang.
He drove that all through high school and the Mustang was still with him when he joined Ford right out of college in 1986. Today, the cars he works on are much more complex, featuring some of the world’s most advanced technology on the road.
In his current role since October 2010, Kuehn is directly responsible for the delivery of electrified programs such as the Focus Electric, Fusion Hybrid and Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid. He also is indirectly responsible for many deliverables for C-MAX Hybrid and C-MAX Energi plug-in hybrid along with fleet programs management for electrified vehicles, Auto Start-Stop planning and implementation, and human machine interface for electrified programs.
And even though he may be working on some of the latest and greatest automotive technologies, one of the most satisfying aspects of his job is the very company for which he works.
“What I enjoy most about working at Ford is the longstanding company heritage and what we mean in terms of our products and services,” Kuehn said.
His life and passion
- Kuehn graduated with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Lawrence Technological University and an MBA, also from Lawrence Tech
- Kuehn and his wife Teri have two daughters, Ashton and Sydni
- His hobbies include building, flying radio-controlled airplanes and helicopters and tae kwon do
- Kuehn and his family enjoy spending time together taking trips to various Michigan destinations
What he does for Ford
- As chief engineer for Ford’s global electrified programs, Kuehn is directly responsible for delivery of the electrified programs such as the Focus Electric, Fusion Hybrid and Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid. He also is indirectly responsible for deliverables related to C-MAX and oversees fleet programs management for electrified vehicles along with several other roles
- Kuehn joined Ford in 1986. His first position was as an electrical system engineer on the Lincoln Town Car, Continental and Mark VII
- Prior to his current job he was chief engineer for the F-150/Expedition/Navigator and responsible for the 2011 program that introduced an all-new lineup of powertrains, including EcoBoost®
- The list of positions Kuehn has held at Ford includes assistant chief engineer, T1 platforms manager, vehicle integration manager and North American Focus integrations manager, just to name a few
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May 3, 2012