Ford's products that create a "better world"
LOS ANGELES, Jan. 2, 2003 – Ford Motor Company today reaffirmed its pledge to bring to market products that help create a “better world,” including the all-new Ford Escape Hybrid and Ford Focus PZEV (partial zero emission vehicle) – both of which will be on the road in California during 2003. The Focus FCV is already on the road in California with potential key customers.
“Ford celebrates its Centennial this year. In terms of economic and social influence, there aren’t many other companies with a greater impact on the lives of people around the world in the 20th century than Ford,” said Cisco Codina, Ford Division general marketing manager, during a press conference at the 2003 Greater Los Angeles Auto Show.
“Ford literally put the world on wheels by mass-producing simple, reliable vehicles that the average family could afford. Our goal is to build on these traditional strengths and redefine them for the 21st century,” Codina continued. “In short, our vision for the future is simple: We’re going to build great products, a strong business and a better world.”
Part of the vision for a better world, Codina said, is for Ford to remain a leader in environmental vehicles. Ford was the first manufacturer to announce plans for a hybrid electric-powered SUV – the Ford Escape Hybrid – the company was the first to announce its production prototype fuel cell vehicle – the Focus FCV – and the company led the industry in voluntarily pledging to make all of its vehicles cleaner and safer, often well in advance of legislative requirements.
Ford’s environmental leadership continues in 2003 as the all-new Escape Hybrid and Focus PZEV vehicles go on the road.
When it goes into production in late 2003, the Escape Hybrid not only will be the most fuel-efficient SUV on the market, it will also be the most practical hybrid vehicle ever built.
The Escape Hybrid will deliver between 35 and 40 miles per gallon (less than 6L/100km) in city driving, while achieving certification under California’s Super Ultra Low Emission Vehicle (SULEV) and Partial Zero Emission Vehicle (PZEV) emissions standards. It also will meet Stage IV emissions rules in Europe before they take effect in 2004.
Its innovative hybrid electric powertrain also will be used for future Ford Motor Company vehicles.
The Escape Hybrid is designed to provide the same acceleration and functionality as its 200-horsepower V-6 cousin, using a combination of a fuel-efficient Atkinson cycle four-cylinder gasoline engine and an electric motor. Overall fuel economy is nearly double that of the V-6 Escape.
In traditional vehicles, energy used to accelerate the car is lost as heat when the driver applies the brakes. The Escape Hybrid is engineered to recover a substantial portion of what would otherwise be “lost energy” and store it temporarily for use while accelerating again. The vehicle’s advanced braking technology is the subject of 51 patent disclosures.
Ford Focus PZEV
The 2003 Ford Focus PZEV (partial zero emissions vehicle), introduced at the 2003 Los Angeles Auto Show, is a rare find. It meets California’s stringent partial zero emissions standard without requiring performance, fun-to-drive or economical sacrifices on the part of its owners.
The Focus PZEV is powered by an all-new 2.3-liter I-4 engine, generating 148 horsepower and 152 foot-pounds of torque. This PZEV powertrain will become the standard engine powering all California, New York, Vermont and Massachusetts Focus models beginning later in the first quarter.
In 2004, the all-new 2.3-liter I-4 engine will be introduced in all non-SVT Ford Focus models in the U.S.
“The new Focus PZEV is a technological breakthrough that delivers real-world environmental benefits without a single compromise for its owners,” says Dave Szczupak, Ford Motor Company vice president, Powertrain Operations. “This super-efficient engine meets California’s stringent partial zero emissions standard while delivering lively performance from a larger-displacement powertrain with enhanced torque.”
Ford is advancing the practical application of fuel cell technology with its zero-emissions Ford Focus FCV – the company’s most advanced environmental vehicle ever – which combines the latest hybrid electric vehicle technology and leading edge fuel cell development with the world’s top-selling passenger car.
The Focus FCV is the motor industry’s first “hybridized fuel cell vehicle,” bringing together the improved range and performance of hybrid technology with the overall benefits of a fuel cell. In 2002, the first 15 Focus FCVs were produced.
Five of the cars are in a collaborative developmental stage with key potential government and private customers. The work enables Ford to receive real-time feedback on production-intent models. The remaining 10 vehicles are going through Ford's standard internal testing programs, including crash and emissions testing. Production of the Focus FCV will continue in 2003 and 2004.
During its test program, the Focus FCV is expected to demonstrate a 160-200 mile (250-320 kms) operating range – a significant improvement on previous fuel cell vehicles (which typically achieved a maximum range of 100 miles or less).
The Focus FCV’s performance levels compare with a more conventional saloon and its top speed is governed at 80 mph.
Ford is no newcomer to environmental vehicles. Ford through the years has offered a full range of vehicles powered by fuels other than gasoline. Ford today is a global leader in the production and development of cars and trucks that run on alternative fuels, offering the broadest range of alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs), including vehicles that run on natural gas, propane and ethanol.
Ford first began offering propane-powered trucks in 1964 and was the first automaker to offer its propane trucks with the same limited warranty as gasoline-powered versions. Ford now has a propane-powered vehicle option for nearly every commercial truck application.
For more than four decades, Ford has been a pioneer in electric vehicle development. In the 1960s, the company invented the sodium-sulfur battery and built two-seater commuter cars in England. In the ‘70s, an electric Ford Cortina appeared in England, and, in North America, the first hybrid vehicle was a Ford Econoline van. The ‘80s saw more experimental EV’s. By the time Ford launched its Ecostar demonstration electric vehicle fleet in 1989, the company had tallied more than 1 million miles of EV driving experience.
Since 1996, the federal government has purchased or leased more than 4,000 bi-fuel natural gas or propane vehicles from Ford.
By 1998, the Ranger EV, a battery-powered version of Ford’s best-selling compact pickup, became the 12th unique technology in the company’s industry-leading selection of alternate fuel vehicles. Five years and some 2,000 Ranger EVs later, the program wrapped up as the largest-ever limited-production EV pilot, with an array of dedicated systems – energy storage, battery management and regenerative braking, among them – proven out for mass production in upcoming Ford products, such as the Ford Escape Hybrid.
In 1993, Ford introduced the flexible fuel Taurus. Flexible fuel vehicles operate on ethanol, gasoline or any combination of the two fuels in the same tank. These vehicles were followed by bi-fuel vehicles in 1994. Bi-fuel vehicles have the capacity to run on either an alternative fuel or gasoline – in separate tanks – offering customers the best of both worlds by combining the clean-burning characteristics of alternative fuels with the range and convenience of gasoline.
In 1999, Ford began selling its first mainstream flexible fuel vehicle (FFV). All Ford Ranger pickups and Taurus sedans with 3.0-liter engines have flexible fuel systems and are able to run on E85 ethanol, gasoline or any combination of the two in the same tank. In the summer of 2001, Ford began offering Explorer, Explorer Sport and Explorer SportTrac with flexible fuel systems.
Ford is a global leader in the production and development of cars and trucks that run on alternative fuels, and the company intends to continue to be a leader as hybrid electric and fuel cell electric vehicles become more viable.
Today, Ford offers bi-fuel propane versions of F-Series Super Duty or Light Duty trucks, as well as a wide range of natural gas products, including a dedicated natural gas version of the Crown Victoria sedan, F-Series light-duty truck and Econoline van cutaway for shuttle and delivery fleet use. The F-Series light-duty truck also is available with a bi-fuel natural gas fuel system, operating on gasoline or natural gas through separate fuel systems.