First Ford Zero-Emissions Passenger Car – the All-New Focus Electric – at Geneva Show
- All-new Ford Focus Electric is the first fuel-free, rechargeable passenger car from Ford and one of five new electrified vehicles Ford will deliver by 2013 in Europe and North America
- Powerful on board charging equipment can charge the Focus Electric in three to four hours, if the car is plugged to an appropriate public charging station
- Connected to a dedicated charging box at home, the charging time will be five to six hours and will range from eight to nine hours from a standard European household plug
- Focus Electric will provide consumers with a zero-emissions choice
March 1, 2011 – The all-new Focus Electric, Ford’s first-ever all-electric passenger car – unveiled at the North American International Auto Show in January – makes its European debut at the 81st Geneva Motor Show today.
This zero-emissions, fuel-free, version of Ford’s popular hatchback will arrive in Europe in 2012, the flagship of the company’s growing fleet of hybrid, plug-in hybrid and all-electric vehicles that will go on sale in Europe and North America by 2013.
“Focus Electric is the flagship of our new family of electrified vehicles, showcasing our commitment to offer consumers choice when it comes to fuel-efficient or fuel-free vehicles,” said Derrick Kuzak, Ford group vice president for Global Product Development. “Its advanced powertrain will deliver significant energy efficiency advantages and zero CO2 emissions without compromising driving enjoyment. And its suite of smart driver information technologies will transform the way customers think about energy usage and their transportation needs.”
The Focus Electric will be launched in Europe in the summer of 2012 and is designed to offer sufficient range to cover the majority of daily driving habits. The sleek and stylish five-door hatchback leverages Ford’s global C-car platform shared by the petrol and diesel-engined Focus models shortly to become available in Europe.
Focus Electric will introduce new features and technologies – including a unique version of the MyFord Touch driver connect system especially for electric vehicles supporting the driver in enjoying driving an electric vehicle in the most efficient way.
Focus Electric is one of five new electrified vehicles included in Ford’s electrification strategy. Initial deliveries of the first battery electric vehicle from Ford, the Transit Connect Electric began in North America at the end of last year and it will be launched in Europe later in 2011.
A real car
Not only is Focus Electric designed to provide outstanding, energy efficiency and reliable operation, it also delivers real driving enjoyment. The all-electric powertrain and single-speed transmission provide immediate responsiveness and smooth acceleration when the driver depresses the accelerator, up to a top speed of 136 kph (84 mph).
Much of Focus Electric’s steering, handling and braking feel is shared with the agile and sporty fuel-powered Focus models upon which it is based, making Focus Electric a dynamic driver’s car. At the same time, the absence of a petrol or diesel engine, combined with the outstanding aerodynamics of Focus, lead to a remarkably quiet, comfortable in-car experience.
“More than any other electric vehicle on the market, Focus Electric loses none of the dynamics and quality of driving a traditional car,” said Sherif Marakby, director of Ford’s electrification programs and engineering. “It shares many of the same premium components and features as its petrol-powered counterpart, while delivering distinct efficiencies and a uniquely exciting driving experience.”
Focus Electric will offer a host of standard safety and security features including six airbags and electronic traction control, along with hands-free SYNC® telephone connectivity.
Plug and play
Future owners of the Focus Electric will likely recharge the car’s advanced, Ford-engineered lithium-ion battery pack at home on a daily basis, using the 230-volt convenience cord that comes with the vehicle. When plugged in, the Focus Electric on-board charger converts AC power from the electric grid to DC power to charge the liquid-cooled/heated battery pack within 8-9 hours, using a standard wall plug, and 5-6 hours using a dedicated charging box. Further more, the powerful on-board charging equipment can charge the Focus Electric in just 3- 4 hours if the car is plugged in to an appropriate public charging station.
“We’re very excited about the potential of Focus Electric in the marketplace. With so many of us accustomed to recharging mobile electronics on a daily basis, we’re confident our customers will take to the vehicle recharging process just as easily, because that’s exactly what it is – easy,” said Nancy Gioia, Ford director of Global Electrification. “Not only have we made the practice of plugging in simple and straightforward, we’re working with leading technology companies and the utility industry to make the EV experience empowering and engaging.”
An empowering experience
Focus Electric owners will be provided with a suite of driver information systems – on-board and off-board – designed to help them manage the recharge process, manage the most eco-friendly route on-board, monitor battery state of charge and maximise energy efficiency to optimise their driving range. This carefully engineered set of tools is designed to give Focus Electric the edge over competitive products, providing new electric vehicle owners the information they need to enjoy all the freedom fuel-free driving has to offer.
Among these tools is a unique execution of MyFord Touch driver connect technology. Thoughtfully developed for electric vehicle owners, it offers innovative presentation of vehicle information, such as battery state of charge, the corresponding range budget and expected range margin. The system’s MyView feature allows drivers to access even more vehicle data including the electrical demands of vehicle accessories such as air conditioning, which can impact driving range.
Just as the growing leafy vine of first-generation SmartGauge™ with EcoGuide represents fuel efficiency in the Ford Fusion Hybrid in the US, the cluster display in the Focus Electric uses blue butterflies to represent the surplus range beyond one’s charge point destination – the more butterflies there are, the greater the range.
Ford designers were inspired by the phenomenon known as “the butterfly effect,” in which a small change, like choosing to drive an electric vehicle, can have an enormous impact. To reinforce the message, at the end of each trip a display screen provides distance driven, miles gained through regenerative braking, energy consumed and a comparative fuel savings achieved by driving electric.
The new Focus Electric offers a unique value charging feature for owners in the U.S., powered by Microsoft, to help charge their vehicles at the cheapest utility rates, lowering the cost of ownership.
The tool is designed to help customers avoid unnecessary expense by providing an optimised charge. In the future, these smart charging habits will help utility companies understand and better manage the demands placed upon the electric grid because of electrified vehicles.
Ford is also currently in negotiations with several power suppliers in Europe to prepare the market for the introduction of a smart charging system to optimise the charging time and costs for future European customers.
Getting charged up
Focus Electric owners are likely to handle one of the vehicle’s charge cord connectors two or more times each day. That’s why Ford worked with supplier Yazaki to provide an industry-standard five-point plug that is ergonomically comfortable to hold as well as durably and distinctively designed.
The plug handle uses a matte-finished black rubber that allows for a comfortable, non-slip grip. The plug head is shielded with a protective glossy white plastic.
When the cord connector is plugged into the vehicle’s charge port, conveniently located between the driver’s door and front wheel arch, it activates a light ring that loops around the port twice in acknowledgement of connectivity. The light ring then illuminates in quadrants as the vehicle charges. Flashing quadrants represent charge in progress and solid-lit quadrants show stages of charge completion. In the unlikely event of a fault, the entire ring will flash. When the entire ring is solidly lit, the vehicle is fully charged.
Focus Electric will be powered by an advanced lithium-ion battery system engineered by Ford in cooperation with supplier LG Chem. The battery system utilises heated and cooled liquid to help maximise battery life and fuel-free driving range.
Thermal management of lithium-ion battery systems is critical to the success of pure electric vehicles. Focus Electric uses an advanced active liquid cooling and heating system to precondition and regulate the temperature in its larger, more complex lithium-ion battery system.
The active liquid system heats or chills a coolant before pumping it through the battery cooling system. This loop regulates temperature throughout the system against external conditions. On hot days, chilled liquid absorbs heat from the batteries, dispersing it through a radiator before pumping it through the chiller again. On cold days, heated liquid warms the batteries, gradually bringing the system’s temperature to a level that allows it to efficiently accept charge energy and provide enough discharge power for expected vehicle performance.
“Focus Electric is the culmination of years of research and development,” said Kuzak. “More importantly, it’s the start of an exciting new era for Ford and our customers.”
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About Ford Motor Company
Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 164,000 employees and about 70 plants worldwide, the company’s automotive brands include Ford and Lincoln. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford’s products, please visit www.fordmotorcompany.com.
Ford of Europe is responsible for producing, selling and servicing Ford brand vehicles in 51 individual markets and employs approximately 66,000 employees. In addition to Ford Motor Credit Company, Ford of Europe operations include Ford Customer Service Division and 22 manufacturing facilities, including joint ventures. The first Ford cars were shipped to Europe in 1903 – the same year Ford Motor Company was founded. European production started in 1911.