Ford Delivers Best August Hybrid Sales Ever with C-MAX Energi and Fusion Energi Achieving Record Sales

Ford Fusion Energi
2013 Ford Fusion Energi
  • Ford delivers its best August electrified vehicle sales ever with 8,292 sales, up 288 percent over August 2012

  • Ford’s plug-in hybrids, Fusion Energi and C-MAX Energi, delivered their best sales month year-to-date, with 600 and 621 units sold, respectively

  • Ford C-MAX Hybrid sales jumped twelve percent in August over the previous month, with 3,032 units sold

  • Fusion Hybrid and C-MAX Hybrid hit regional sales records in key hybrid markets, delivering best sales months ever in Washington, D.C., San Francisco and Seattle

  • Ford’s commitment to providing the Power of Choice extends to Europe, where Ford will offer three electrified vehicles by 2014

Ford delivered its best August electrified vehicle sales ever with more than 8,292 sales, up 288 percent over the same period a year ago. August marks the 11th consecutive month that Ford has achieved electrified vehicle sales records.

The C-MAX Hybrid was a key driver in helping Ford deliver its best August hybrid sales ever and continuing to establish Ford as a major player in the hybrid market, trailing only Toyota.  Ford C-MAX hybrids sales jumped twelve percent in August over the previous month, with 3,032 units sold.

“Our dealers continue to tell us that the C-MAX Hybrid brings new customers to their showrooms, customers who previously hadn’t considered a Ford vehicle,” said C.J. O’Donnell, Ford electrified vehicles group marketing manager. “Customers love the outstanding all-around package that the vehicle provides, all while getting class-leading fuel economy.”

Nearly two-thirds of the sales came from conquest buyers, people who traded in other car brands. Highest on the trade-in list?  Toyota Prius and Honda CR-V.

Strong C-MAX Hybrid sales continue to increase Ford’s presence in California, accounting for more than 30 percent of the brand’s hybrid growth in the west.

C-MAX Hybrid and Fusion Hybrid delivered sales records in key hybrid markets in August. Both vehicles recorded their best sales months ever in Washington, D.C., San Francisco and Seattle. Fusion Hybrid delivered its second best-selling month in Los Angeles, just two units shy of hitting its previous record, while C-MAX Hybrid delivered its best sales month year-to-date in New York, with sales up 35 percent over last month.

Ford’s plug-in hybrids also recorded record sales in August. Fusion Energi and C-MAX Energi delivered their best sales month year-to-date with 600 and 621 units sold, respectively, with nearly 50 percent of units sold in California.

“No-Compromise” Hybrid

The latest J.D. Power APEAL research, which measures the satisfaction that owners feel about their new vehicles, shows that Ford’s plan to offer a hybrid that gives hybrid drivers a vehicle that offers power and performance, fun to drive, and met their needs for carrying people and cargo is paying off. According to the data, C-MAX Hybrid is scoring high in power and refinement.

Engine responsiveness, smoothness, passing power/acceleration, interior quietness and visibility are all ranked significantly higher than the segment average.

Customers also reporting that the C-MAX Hybrid is “more luxurious” and “more innovative” as well as more environmentally friendly.

Extending the Power of Choice

Ford announced earlier this week that it will offer a choice of three distinct electrified vehicles in European showrooms by 2014 to complement its line-up of fuel efficient gasoline and diesel powered vehicles.

Coming next year will be the new C-MAX Energi plug-in hybrid and the Mondeo Hybrid. They will join the Ford Focus Electric, a zero emission battery electric vehicle built in Saarlouis, Germany, and now on sale in Europe.

About Ford Motor Company
Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F), a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 175,000 employees and 65 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 and its products worldwide, please visit http://corporate.ford.com.

SOURCE Ford Motor Company

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Ford Could Save America Billions (if it got rid of side mirrors)

by Jo Borrás — Special to JBS News

F-150
Lowering the Ford F-150 pickup truck, replacing the side mirrors with webcams and other minor alterations, could add 1 MPG to each truck. Doing so would save 22 million gallons of gasoline annually, just in the U.S.A.

What if a company had the ability with a few minor changes on just one product line — to save its customers over a billion dollars on gasoline, and reduce America’s fuel use by an almost unbelievable 22.6 million gallons of gasoline per year, every year? Would that make you want to buy that product? The article, below, first published on Gas 2, suggests a few changes that Ford might make to its F-series trucks.

What do you think? Would these changes be enough to get you into a Ford dealer?

Learning From Elon: What if Ford Went Mirrorless to Save the World?

A few days ago, Gas 2 editor Chris DeMorro shared Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s plans to take his cars “mirrorless” in the near future, cutting back on the car’s aerodynamic drag by a significant percentage and dramatically improving range – especially at highway speeds. Elon Musk isn’t always right (example: he missed the chance to call his Hyperloop concept “the Musk Tube”), but I think he’s dead-on here, and it got me thinking: what if Ford went mirrorless?

I chose Ford for a few reasons. First, their F-150 pickup is the best-selling vehicle in the US, so any changes that improve MPG for that vehicle would have the largest overall repercussions in regards to America’s fossil fuels usage. Second, the Ford F-150 Tremor article we ran a while back was hugely popular, so I’m guessing you guys like Ford trucks. Third, I may have overly harassed Ford’s main PR/social media dude at June’s Further With Ford trends conference, so saying some nice stuff about their latest and greatest truck product is probably the least I could do to make it up to the guy, you know?

Let’s get started, then!

My first move was to make a rendering of what a Ford F-150 Tremor, with just a few minor, MPG-enhancing changes might look like. I’ve included that, below …

Click to Enlarge

… along with a few notes on my thinking behind the changes.

  • Lower the truck. For ‘work’ trucks, hauling, etc. a higher truck allows for a softer suspension and a nicer ride, but it also cuts back on fuel economy by increasing frontal area on the tires and by pushing more air over the trucks’ un-aerodynamic underbellies. Something reasonable, like “crossover height” should be a good compromise, with airbag suspension on high-end models making up the difference in ride quality.
  • Replace the side mirrors with webcams, using shrouded covers that can shade the small “webcams” and keep them functional in direct light/glare.
  • Cover the tubular running boards with a composite cover to clean up the airflow there. I’d say something about using plant-based plastics here, but Ford’s already doing that.
  • There’s a large air intake at the front bumper of the F-150s that doesn’t need to be there for most (read: empty-bed) driving. I’ve drawn in a plastic flap to cover this and cleanup the airflow at the front of the truck. Ford has a few options on how to implement this, and could go the Chevy Cruze Eco route of making this flap mechanical, or it could just make it an ultra-cheap manual flap. Bonus: getting engine oil up to temp. in winter would be a lot easier with this simple feature in place.
  • There are two large tow-hooks on the front bumper of the F-150 which could easily be covered by inexpensive plastic covers that could be “popped off” on those rare occasions when the tow hooks are needed.
  • Finally, I removed the round foglight cut-outs because it’s not 1987 anymore and they look ridiculous.

What kind of a difference will changes like this really make? With a reduction in frontal area and drag of around 10%, I think a 1 MPG difference on the combined rating is a fairly conservative estimate. Given that the average 2013 F-150 gets 18 MPG. Given, also, that Ford sold 645,316 F-series trucks last year, and that each one of those is driven about 12,000 miles/year, we can get a pretty good idea of how many gallons of gas that might save American drivers.

By my numbers, the figure is a staggering 22.6 million gallons of gas. More than 400,000 55-gallon “barrels” in other words, just from getting 1 more MPG out of the F-150. Don’t take my word for it, though: check the math.

Keep in mind, that’s 22.6 million gallons saved, PER MODEL YEAR. If Ford did something like this for 5 years in a row, they’d save their customers more than 330 million gallons of fuel. At $4/gallon, that’s well over a billion dollars. They’d improve air quality. They’d improve their customers’ health. They’d play a big part in helping America achieve energy independence. All from a few simple changes.

How likely are minor changes like these to get that 1 MPG out of the F-150? Gas 2 commenter and all-around smart dude Neil Blanchard did the math for us in that Tesla article’s comments thread. Here it is, for your enjoyment.

Replacing the optical mirrors with video mirrors reduces the aerodynamic drag two ways: it reduces the frontal area (about 1 square foot?) and also by reducing the coefficient of drag (Cd) because the shape is sleeker and generates less turbulence. The Model S has a Cd of 0.24 – and I’ll make a WAG on the frontal area; say 27 sq ft.

If that is the case, the CdA is 27 x 0.24 = 6.48 sq ft.

Early on, they (Tesla) mentioned a Cd of 0.22 for the Model S, and this may also be from smoother wheels, let’s say for the sake of argument that using video mirrors would yield a Cd of 0.23.

The revised frontal area is 26 sq ft and the revised CdA is 5.98 sq ft. which is a bit over 7.5% reduction.

I’ve been using video mirrors for more than four years, and I have been averaging more than 46MPG all year – it’s a Scion xA and the EPA Combined is 30MPG, so that is a 50%+ improvement.

Original Content and Images: Gas 2.

About the Author

I’ve been involved in motorsports and tuning since 1997, and write for a number of blogs in the Important Media network. You can find me on Twitter, Skype (jo.borras) or Google+.

This article, Ford Could Save America Billions (if it got rid of side mirrors), is syndicated from Clean Technica and is posted here with permission.
banner-400x150-1a Still paying a service

Only in DC: The Cure for Range Anxiety

by John Brian Shannon

Actually, charging stations for electric vehicles are popping up all over the place these days, not just in Washington, DC — and that’s a good thing! Ford Motor’s Mike Tinskey has said the total number of charging stations in the U.S. has risen sharply in the past few years to more than 11,500 installed units.

How to find them has been a problem in the past. But that is changing as sophisticated smartphone apps are now providing better information and easier access to EV charging points. Manufacturers of charging stations are forming vast complementary and interconnected charging networks across the country that are available via the new smartphone apps. Which is handy, and a good way to increase range and perhaps your EV’s overall performance. Not to mention lowering anxiety.

One such network is ChargePoint – now the world’s largest EV charging network.

“Through ChargePoint, DBT USA can now provide station owners and EV drivers features including the ability to help with trip planning, manage the cost of charging, and find and operate public stations.” — Green Car Congress

More and better charging stations, entire charging networks made easily accessible via smartphone, combined with recent, significant price drops for EV’s — what’s not to like?

ChargePoint Unveils New EV Charging Smart Phone App

ChargePoint Smartphone App image courtesy of: Cleantechnica

Car manufacturers are getting into the game directly and Nissan’s new network will initially start with 40 of their so-called eVgo Freedom Stations to be installed throughout the greater Washington, DC area — thereby becoming the first network of public fast chargers in the region. Owners of cars like the Nissan LEAF will enjoy the eVgo experience as these fast chargers can give an 80% charge in 30-minutes. Time for a latte? Of course, there’s no range anxiety here.

Ford’s MyFord Mobile teams up with PlugShare to give real-time information on nearby charging stations for Ford hybrid-electric and EV vehicles as you drive through the countryside or city.

“It is a little known fact that the majority of charging stations are currently free to use. By giving drivers a clear view of the reality of charging, PlugShare and Ford are showing more and more drivers that now is a great time to start driving on electricity,” Forrest North, CEO of Xatori, which makes PlugShare, said in a statement. “With our real-time, crowd-sourcing features that include photos, reviews and check-ins, PlugShare has quickly become one of the largest and most popular charging station locators in North America.” —  PCMag.com

The MyFord system will conveniently and automatically locate the nearest charger to your favourite pizza joint, Starbucks, the mall, or wherever it is that you are going. I love it when technology plays this nice!

MyFord Mobile is available in the App Store and Google Play. Car information is also accessible on the Web via myfordmobile.com.

JOHN BRIAN SHANNON

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