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Bloggin 08-29-2017 04:04 PM

Ford Will Ease Into EVs
Ford Will Ease Into EVs
Starting with plug-in versions of utility vehicles
August 28, 2017 @ 12:01 am
Michael Martinez Twitter Facebook RSS feed

DETROIT Ford Motor Co. plans to bring back a Ford Escape hybrid, this time as a plug-in, and roll out hybrid versions of its full-size SUVs as it makes a bigger push into electrification toward the end of the decade.

The Escape plug-in hybrid, Ford Expedition hybrid and Lincoln Navigator hybrid are scheduled for release in 2019, sources with knowledge of Ford's product plans told Automotive News.

Those vehicles, along with a Lincoln MKC plug-in hybrid also expected in 2019, are four of the 13 electrified models Ford plans to introduce in the next five years. In January, the automaker identified seven of the other models, including hybrid versions of the Mustang and F-150 to be available by 2020.

Ford has said it is investing $4.5 billion to develop the 13 vehicles.

"They're at a critical point in their strategy, and that's trying to balance today and tomorrow," said Jeff Schuster, senior vice president of forecasting at LMC Automotive. "You don't want to go all in on EVs at this point because that's not going to pay the bills and keep the lights on today, but you also don't want to get behind."

Adding hybrid versions of Ford's biggest SUVs makes sense, Schuster said, as the automaker tries to increase fuel economy without creating range anxiety for buyers who tend to take long road trips.

Redesigned, gasoline-powered versions of the Expedition and Navigator will arrive in dealerships this fall as Ford seeks to cash in on a popular segment. LMC has predicted that large SUV sales will grow 25 percent by 2022.

Crossovers continue to be hot as well, so Ford plans to add plug-in hybrid versions of its two compact offerings in 2019. Spy photos of a plug-in Escape surfaced this year, and sources told Automotive News that Ford also plans a plug-in hybrid variant of the MKC, which shares the same platform.

Ford sold a hybrid version of the Escape from 2004 through 2012, when it was discontinued because of slow sales and the launch of the C-Max hatchback, which is available as a plug-in or a traditional hybrid.

A plug-in hybrid can go limited distances without using gasoline and would be more efficient in city centers or on shorter trips, which could appeal to the tech-savvy younger customers of the Escape and MKC.

"Each of these alternative powertrains have advantages and disadvantages," Schuster said. "I think you have to take a basket approach; there's a lot of risk of just focusing on one technology."

Ford sees hybrids, plug-in hybrids and electric vehicles playing a central role in a future shaped by autonomous cars and shared transportation.

Read more.....

Bloggin 08-29-2017 04:09 PM

Re: Ford Will Ease Into EVs
The article gets rather loose with terms as it refers to a hybrid or plug-in hybrid. With Navigator and Expedition being exported to China, both have to have a plug and at least 31 miles of range to qualify for the new strict clean vehicle incentives. Besides the fact that today, is less about using 'less' fuel, but more about using zero fuel as much as possible and the PHEV offers both the option to plug in and go more miles on electric or get the hybrid mpg on a longer trip that big SUVs are purchased for.

Assimilator 08-29-2017 04:20 PM

Re: Ford Will Ease Into EVs
The MKC is getting a major facelift for 2019 while the Escape will be all-new in 2020, still confused by this product cadence, especially as it relates to electrification.

So we can put names to more than half of the new electrified products.

Transit Custom
Model E

The F-150/Expedition/Navigator hybrid will be the biggest news for the EV industry but I suspect GM and RAM will get there first with their 2019 trucks so it's good to get that messaging out ahead of them.

Lincoln could really use an electrified Continental and MKX.

Bloggin 08-29-2017 05:59 PM

Re: Ford Will Ease Into EVs
^...It looks like everything will be offered in hybrid and plug-in hybrid or at this point just plug-in hybrid.

Remember the F-150 Plug-in Hybrid mule with a plug door, which needs a plug if its expected to power equipment on the job etc.

I noticed that the charge plug was moved to the passenger side, which makes sense since on the F-150 it needs to be on the side where work is done, and not the street side. Which explains why the gas filler was moved from the driver's side to the passenger side on the 2018 Expedition and Navigator.

I expect that they will create a door slightly larger than the Navigator side marker which should illuminate.

wingsnut 08-29-2017 07:35 PM

Re: Ford Will Ease Into EVs
The headline here should mention how Ford is going bold and broad into electrification, and wisely careful into BEV.

Going to fast into EV is foolish. Few people want a chord attached to their vehicle, and no automaker wants zero profits. So why go too fast into that.

Assimilator 08-29-2017 08:06 PM

Re: Ford Will Ease Into EVs
Ford is actually exiting the BEV business entirely with the end of the Focus EV. They'll also be down to just 1-Plug-in hybrid with Fusion until 2020. I think this is one of the reasons they want to talk about distant product plans right now because they know it's going to look like they are going in reverse for awhile. But by 2020 they should be closer to catching up to the industry leaders like GM, VW and Toyota which are advancing more aggressively.

wingsnut 08-29-2017 08:13 PM

Re: Ford Will Ease Into EVs
Yup, catch up to the zero profit offerings.


Assimilator 08-29-2017 08:24 PM

Re: Ford Will Ease Into EVs

Originally Posted by wingsnut (Post 313522)
Yup, catch up to the zero profit offerings.


Do you think the Ford GT is profitable?

wingsnut 08-29-2017 08:38 PM

Re: Ford Will Ease Into EVs
A vehicle that pretty much none of the competition has anything to compete with. Interesting that you wanted to slam Ford for not having an EV (actually you have no idea what they have planned) to compete with the brilliance of GM, but chastise Ford for......oh never mind.

I do think that the halo benefits to Ford, it's racing heritage, return to LeMans, ect...... and even the bolstering of the Performance brand is immeasurable. So, yeah. I think it is very profitable and well worth the investment. Which is quite minimal btw.

Bloggin 08-29-2017 10:02 PM

Re: Ford Will Ease Into EVs
Toyota sizes up N. American suppliers for EVs
August 28, 2017 @ 12:01 am

Except for efforts such as the Scion iQ, Toyota largely has been on the EV sidelines until now.

ANN ARBOR, Mich. Toyota Motor Corp., a late convert to the electric-vehicle movement, is sizing up North American sourcing for components such as power packs, motors and inverters in anticipation of a plunge into electrified vehicle production.

Toyota's North American purchasing arm began assessing the local supply chain more than a year ago as part of the company's decision to set up an in-house division dedicated to developing EVs, said Robert Young, Toyota Motor North America group vice president for purchasing, supplier engineering development, and cost planning.

Japan's biggest automaker is laying the groundwork for an expected ramp-up in electrified vehicles to meet increasingly stringent emissions regulations worldwide. Although Toyota is known for its extensive hybrid vehicle lineup in the United States, the carmaker still lacks the volume to warrant making batteries, motors or transaxles here.

But that will soon change, Young said, as demand picks up for EVs and hybrids.

"If you look over the next decade, it's highly likely we will surpass that tipping point," Young said this month in an interview at Toyota's North American r&d center here. "We look out to the future either pure EV vehicles and/or EV-related components we know we're going to have to have the capability to build those here."

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