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Geneva Motor Show attendees get to drive Ford's first EV - the Focus Electric

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March 6, 2012

Attendees at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show are being given the first opportunity to actually ...

Attendees at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show are being given the first opportunity to actually get behind the steering wheel and drive Ford's first all-electric passenger car - the Focus Electric

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Gizmag readers will no doubt be quite familiar with Ford's Focus Electric by now. We first mentioned the company's plans to enter the passenger EV market in 2009, and Ford chose to first unveil its new vehicle at CES 2011. Later that year, the auto giant started taking orders for its new Focus Electric five door hatchback, and now attendees at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show are being given the first opportunity to actually get behind the steering wheel and drive Ford's first all-electric passenger car.

Ford expects the Focus Electric to be available in 19 markets across the U.S. by the end of this year, with prices starting at US$39,200 (plus $795 for destination charges) before any tax credits are taken off. The new flagship model of its growing ECOnetic Technology-badged line-up, the vehicle is said to have a range of 100 miles (160 km) on a single charge of its liquid-cooled/heated 23kWh lithium-ion battery pack, and a charge time of just three to four hours via a 240V charging station, such as its own home charging solution developed with Leviton.

The Focus Electric also includes Ford's SYNC voice control, device integration and connectivity interface that presents the driver with real-time vehicle information, such as battery state of charge, distance to charge point, the corresponding range budget and expected range margin. Information displayed on the two 4.2-inch LCD instrument cluster screens can be customized using the five-way buttons on the steering wheel, and a SmartGauge with EcoGuide offers the driver a screen full of blue butterflies to graphically represent the surplus range beyond the destination of the next scheduled charging point.

There's also a MyFordMobile app that will allow drivers to keep up to date with important vehicle information, such as charge remaining, via their mobile phones.

The Focus Electric is said to offer drivers a similar steering, handling and braking experience to the gasoline hatchback on which it is based, featuring electric power-assisted steering and power-assisted four-wheel disc brakes with four-sensor, four-channel anti-lock braking system. The front wheel drive electric vehicle has a 141 hp/107 kW electric motor delivering 250Nm of torque and a top speed of 84 mph (136 km/h) rather than a fuel-powered engine, the transmission is single-speed, regenerative braking grabs back some otherwise wasted energy, and the external charge port is LED-illuminated.

Source: Ford 2012 Focus Electric

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Paul Ridden While Paul is loath to reveal his age, he will admit to cutting his IT teeth on a TRS-80 (although he won't say which version). An obsessive fascination with computer technology blossomed from hobby into career before the desire for sunnier climes saw him wave a fond farewell to his native Blighty in favor of Bordeaux, France. He's now a dedicated newshound pursuing the latest bleeding edge tech for Gizmag.   All articles by Paul Ridden
11 Comments

I have worked my entire career in battery systems and EV development... All 32 years, and I think that Ford has the car to beat in this market.

Bob Anderson
6th March, 2012 @ 11:32 am PST

A $40,000 electric car with a 240 VAC stand alone charging system is the most idiotic concept I could ever imagine. This is going to FAIL!

Eric Eisinger
6th March, 2012 @ 12:40 pm PST

This car should sell pretty good.

But I cant wait for a few more years when they will be half this price.

Derek Howe
6th March, 2012 @ 03:28 pm PST

On the Ford site, it lists the motor as 107kW in the FAQ, but if you follow the Build & Price link, it lists the motor as 92kW. I didn't see a form or email address to report the conflict. I gave them a call to get the right value, but when they connected me to a fax machine, I gave up.

Nick Kordich
6th March, 2012 @ 06:17 pm PST

re; Derek Howe

The big cost is the battery and that is not going to get cheaper any time soon. And of course it will have to be replaced.

Slowburn
6th March, 2012 @ 06:29 pm PST

Battery is the show stopper here. This may (or may not) change: http://www.gizmag.com/envia-systems-record-lithium-ion-battery/21653/ If it does the electric cars are - finally - in. If it does not they keep beeing just nice toys for the one percenters like all Tesla cars.

nehopsa
6th March, 2012 @ 08:14 pm PST

I like everyone else have to have my air and heat working in my car. When I am comfortable in my car, what is my range in an electric car? Do they even have A/C and heat? Can you be comfortable in an all electric car in all seasons? How long will it be before I have to replace the batteries and how much will that cost me? Why are basic questions like this always ignored when discussing all electric cars? I don't want to think about things like, if I have my radio on, my range drops by 2 miles. I don't like being stranded because of a dead battery, or having to think, can my car make it from point A to point B and back?

Larry Hoffman
7th March, 2012 @ 01:35 pm PST

Simple logic will answer some questions. 1 Do the detractors of electric cars LOVE their petrol cars? Yes. 2 Air con? Where theres a market some one will manufacture the product 3 Lithium batteries will be recycled and the demand will be met and then prices for lithium will fall. 4 Range? serious issue and I will still buy an electric car and carry a small petrol generator in the boot and a solar panel to maintain the charge. 5 Price? Henry Ford did it so can modern man. 6 The sooner we embrace electric cars the sooner petrol gets cheaper. 7 Why? Cities will soon not allow petrol cars onto city streets to reduce pollution electric cars can be very small (think invalid scooters and golf carts) and public transport will be a thing of the past like horses. 8 Flat batteries? Road service organisations will bring out (carry on board) a spare battery to get you to a charging station. 9 Jump start? Yes your mate can lend you a battery because batteries will be serries/parallel cells. 10 But I do a lot of driving? Get a hybrid or get a life.

The people who wont like electric cars are hoons with V8s.

pointyup
7th March, 2012 @ 09:43 pm PST

Pretty expensive for a product that uses solar PV assistance for factory energy and a slew of robotics working 24/7 with $0 benefits. Why are they gouging consumers so badly? Are they looking to fail, so their buddies in the oil industry can continue their monopoly?

electric38
8th March, 2012 @ 08:35 am PST

too much coin for a Ford Focus, I don't care if it makes coffee for you... it's still a Ford Focus

thewaldron
8th March, 2012 @ 10:46 am PST

Has anyone done an "economic analysis" of owning,operating and maintaining as well as replacing batteries of any EV for a period of, say, 25 years compared to gasoline/diesel powered vehicle for the same period?. What was the results?.

Sinnadurai Sripadmanaban
12th March, 2012 @ 10:53 pm PDT
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