Ford Focus Electric

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Ford Focus Electric
2012 Ford Focus Electric 2011 LA Auto Show.jpg
2012 Ford Focus Electric
Overview
Manufacturer Ford Motor Company
Also called Ford Focus BEV
Production 2011–present
Assembly Michigan Assembly Plant, Wayne, Michigan
Body and chassis
Class Compact car (C-Class)
Body style 5-door hatchback
Powertrain
Electric motor 143 hp (107 kW) synchronous motor
Transmission Electric
Battery 23 kWh lithium-ion battery
Range 76 mi (122 km) (EPA)
Plug-in charging 6.6 kW onboard charger[1] on SAE-J1772-2009 inlet
Dimensions
Wheelbase 104.3 in (2,649 mm)
Length 171.6 in (4,359 mm) hatchback
Width 81.1 in (2,060 mm)
Height 57.7 in (1,466 mm)
Curb weight 3,691 lb (1,674 kg)

The Ford Focus Electric is a 5-door hatchback electric car produced by Ford Motor Company. The Focus Electric is Ford's first full production, all-electric passenger vehicle, and production began in December 2011.[2][3] Deliveries for fleet customers in the United States began in December 2011, and it was released to retail customers in May 2012 only in California, New York and New Jersey, in limited numbers, followed by the other 16 initial markets in the third quarter of 2012.[4][5][6][7] The European release was initially slated for late 2012, but was re-scheduled to start deliveries in August 2013.[8][9]

The Focus Electric shares the glider of a third generation Ford Focus. Its electric powertrain uses a 23 kWh, liquid-cooled lithium-ion battery pack,[10] which delivers a range of 76 mi (122 km) according to the US Environmental Protection Agency. The agency rated the Focus Electric combined fuel economy at 105 miles per gallon gasoline equivalent (2.2 L/100 km),[11] and ranks the Focus Electric as the most fuel-efficient car sold in the United States in the compact class.[12] The Focus Electric was awarded the 2011 Green Car Vision Award at the 2011 Washington Auto Show.[13]

History[edit]

The Ford Focus BEV was the concept electric car introduced by Ford Motor Company at the 2009 Frankfurt Motor Show.[14][15] The Focus BEV concept used the European Mark II as its donor vehicle and incorporated key components from Ford’s North American hybrid technology, including the electric climate control system from the 2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid.[15]

The Focus electric pre-production car was unveiled at the 2011 Consumer Electronics Show under the new name of Ford Focus Electric, and this pre-production version was based on the Focus Mark III.[10][16]

U.K. demonstration program[edit]

Ford Focus BEV concept car exhibited at the 2009 Frankfurt Motor Show.

The concept car unveiled at the 2009 Frankfurt Motor Show was developed to participate in the UK Government's "Ultra-Low Carbon Vehicles" demonstration initiative in early 2010.[14][15] A consortium of Ford, Scottish and Southern Energy and University of Strathclyde will use a fleet of 15 Ford Focus BEVs and a charging infrastructure in and around the London Borough of Hillingdon from early 2010. This new BEV demonstration fleet is being developed partly with public funding from the UK Government’s Technology Strategy Board (TSB) which promotes innovative industry-led projects that reduce CO2.[14]

Specifications[edit]

Powertrain and battery[edit]

The Focus Electric shares Ford’s global C-car platform and is based on the glider of the third generation Ford Focus. The electric car is powered by an electric motor rated at 100 kilowatts (130 hp) and uses a 23 kWh capacity lithium-ion battery pack, which together deliver 92 kW (125 PS; 123 bhp) and 181 lb·ft (245 N·m) of torque.[17] Ford indicated that a battery of an all electric vehicle similar to that of the Focus Electric weighs around 600 to 700 pounds and costs about US$12,000 to US$15,000, or between US$522 and US$650 a kilowatt-hour.[18] The Focus Electric has a top speed of 84 mph (135 km/h).[10][19][20]

Based on its five-cycle testing, the United States Environmental Protection Agency rated the Focus Electric combined fuel economy equivalent at 105 MPGe (2.2 L/100 km), with an equivalent 110 MPGe (2.1 L/100 km) in city driving and 99 MPGe (2.4 L/100 km) on highways. The Focus Electric's EPA certified all-electric range is 76 mi (122 km).[11]

The charging port in the production version is located on the left front fender

Ford used a complete electric drive train developed and supplied by Magna International,[21] and the advanced lithium-ion battery system is being engineered by Ford in cooperation with supplier Compact Power, Inc., a subsidiary of LG Chem.[20][22] A full recharge using the car's 6.6 kW charger takes 3–4 hours using a SAE J1772-2009 charging station powered from a standard 240 volt socket. A 120-volt convenience cord is also included allowing recharging from North American standard 120-volt outlets which could take up to 20 hours.[19][20]

The advanced battery system uses an active liquid cooling and heating thermal management system to precondition and regulate the temperature in the battery system. This feature helps to maximize battery life and driving range. 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 a hot day the cooled liquid absorbs heat from the battery pack, dispersing it through a radiator before pumping it through the chiller again. On a cold day the 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.[20][23]

Ford conducted research to define the optimal location of the charge port for the Focus Electric and the Ford C-Max Energi plug-in hybrid. The carmaker decided to locate the port in the left front fender as such location is more convenient for home charging, which Ford found is what most customers would do. Also the side location avoids areas with high risk of damage in the event of small crashes. Ford says this fact was a driving factor in the choice of the side location rather than the rear or the front.[24]

Connectivity and other features[edit]

Lateral view of the 2012 Ford Focus Electric

The Ford Focus Electric will introduce new features and a high level of technological connectivity including a unique version of the MyFord Touch driver connect system adapted for electric vehicles, a new value charging feature powered by Microsoft and a smartphone application called MyFord Mobile that owners can use to control and charge their vehicles remotely.[10][20]

The specialized version of the MyFord Touch technology for the Focus Electric offers an innovative presentation of vehicle information, such as battery state of charge, distance to charge points, 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. This feature would be used to plan multiple-stop journeys within the car’s range and to locate charging stations. The improved MyFord Touch system will also allow drivers to customize the display on a case-by-case basis according to the owners daily, weekly or monthly driving needs.[10][20][25]

Ford's leaf road logo badge for the Focus electric car

Inspired in the Ford Fusion Hybrid growing green leaves of first-generation SmartGauge with EcoGuide, the Focus Electric cluster display uses blue butterflies to represent the surplus range beyond the drivers’s charge point destination, as more butterflies are shown the greater the range is, and the blue butterflies gradually disappear as the car’s battery is depleted. Ford says the designers were inspired by the butterfly effect, a phenomenon in which a small change, such as choosing to drive an electric vehicle, can have an enormous impact. At the end of each trip a display screen provides distance driven, miles gained through regenerative braking, energy consumed and a comparative gasoline savings achieved by driving electric.[10][20][25]

The display cluster is integrated with the MyFord Touch map-based Navigation System using the car’s center stack 8-inch touch screen. After the driver adds destinations, including their next charge point, into the Navigation System, the system provides coaching advice about driver behaviors such as optimizing regenerative braking and accelerating without drawing too much energy; or on how to achieve the desired range, or if travel plans need to be adjusted. The on-board Navigation System provides an EcoRoute option based on characteristics of efficient EV driving.[20][25]

The 2012 Focus Electric was planned to include warning sounds to alert pedestrians of its presence when the electric car was running at low speeds. Ford developed four alternative sounds, and in June 2011 involved the car fans by asking them to pick their favorite from the four potential warning sounds through the Focus Electric Facebook page.[26] However, ultimately Ford decided to hold off including warning sounds unless federal legislation required it, and no such system was implemented on the production vehicle.[27]

Production[edit]

2012 Focus Electric's frontal view
2012 Focus Electric's rear view

Production began in December 2011.[2] The Focus Electric is being built at the Michigan Assembly Plant in Wayne, Michigan on the same line as the gasoline-powered version of the Focus, the C-Max Energi plug-in hybrid and the C-Max Hybrid.[28][29] Ford stated that initial production was to be limited but expected to be ramped up in 2012.[30]

Ford began production of the Focus Electric destined for the European market in Saarlouis, Germany in June 2013. Deliveries to European customers are scheduled to begin in August 2013.[9]

Markets and sales[edit]

United States[edit]

Because initial production of the 2012 model year is limited, the Focus Electric will be available initially only in 19 metropolitan areas including Atlanta, Houston and Austin, Texas, Boston, Chicago, Denver, Detroit, Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, New York City, Orlando, Florida, Phoenix and Tucson, Arizona, Portland, Oregon, Raleigh-Durham, Richmond, Virginia, Seattle, and Washington, D.C.[28][31] Deliveries for fleet customers began in December 2011[6][32] and to retail customers in May 2012.[33] The first production vehicle was delivered to Google in December 2011 and was incorporated in the company's GFleet carsharing corporate service.[34][35] Initially sales are limited to California, New York and New Jersey. Ford has scheduled the launch in other selected markets in the third quarter of 2012.[4][7][32] A total of 685 units were sold in 2012,[36] and 1,738 in 2013.[37] As of September 2014, cumulative sales in the American market reached 3,965 units.[36][37][38][39]

Ford began taking online orders on November 2, 2011, with pricing starting at US$39,995, including a US$795 destination charge, but before the US$7,500 US federal tax credit, along with other state and local incentives available for eligible buyers of plug-in electric vehicles.[31][40] The 2012 Focus Electric is eligible in California to a US$2,500 rebate through the state’s Clean Vehicle Rebate Project (CVRP), and also was granted free access to California’s high-occupancy vehicle lanes (HOV) for solo drivers.[41]

The Focus Electric is priced significantly higher than a conventional 2012 gas-powered Focus, which as of December 2011 lists a base price of US$16,500, and rising to US$30,692 when fully loaded with all available options. Thus after accounting for all available government incentives, in some locations the Focus Electric may be net-priced similar to a fully loaded gas version. When compared to other plug-in electric vehicles available in the U.S., the Focus Electric has essentially the same price as the 2012 Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrid, and it costs US$3,945 more than the base-model 2012 Nissan Leaf SV.[31][42] Available options include leather-trimmed seats and two special paint options, blue candy and white platinum.[42] However in 2013 it was announced that the 2014 Ford Focus Electric model would have US$4,000 slashed of its MSRP, which brings down the base price to US$35,200.[43] Additionally due to the decreasing prices of competitors, as of February 2014 ford offers an additional US$6,000 off the Focus Electric bringing down the base price down to US$29,200 before tax incentives.[44] In October 2014, Ford announced they were knocking $6,000 off of MSRP for the remaining 2014 models as well as 2015 models bringing the starting price down to US$29,995,[45][46]and replacing the temporary $6,000 dealer incentives offered in February 2014.

Ford Focus Electric at a car festival in Sweden with a claimed range of 160 km (99 miles).

Through an association with SunPower, an optional solar-panel system will be offered by some Ford dealers to be installed on the homes of Focus Electric owners to generate enough renewable energy during the day to offset the electricity used to charge the vehicle at night.[47] The SunPower's home solar charging option costs US$10,000 before the available local and federal tax credits. Ford also made an agreement with Best Buy to offer a 240-volt home charging station.[42]

Europe[edit]

The European launch was initially scheduled for late 2012. Although pricing has not been announced, Ford stated that, unlike Renault that will offer a battery-leasing option on its electric vehicles sold in Europe, the Focus Electric will be sold with the battery pack included in the price of the electric car.[8] Deliveries were re-scheduled to start in August 2013.[9]

Demonstration Focus BEV similar to the one featured on the Jay Leno Show.

Marketing[edit]

As a publicity stunt, a Focus BEV was featured on the Jay Leno Show in September 2009. Celebrity guests drove a purpose-built car with the shell from a European market Ford Focus and a test prototype version of electrical powertrain in a segment called "Green Car Challenge".[48][49]

Recognition[edit]

The Ford Focus Electric was awarded the 2011 Green Car Vision Award at the 2011 Washington Auto Show.[13] The 2012 Focus Electric was selected among the five finalists for the 2012 Green Car of the Year awarded by the Green Car Journal in November 2011 at the Los Angeles Auto Show.[50]

Since March 2012, the U.S. EPA ranks the Focus Electric as the 2012 most fuel-efficient car sold in the United States in the compact class.[12]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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  17. ^ Ford Media specification sheet
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  37. ^ a b Jay Cole (2014-02-04). "January 2014 Plug-In Electric Vehicle Sales Report Card". InsideEvs.com. Retrieved 2014-02-05. 
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  50. ^ Chris Woodyard (2011-10-24). "Diesel, electric, natural gas vie for Green Car honors". USA Today. Retrieved 2011-10-24. 

External links[edit]