Posts tagged “Ford”
Ford’s Solar Car Isn’t Just A Toy
It’s car show season again. I’m not sure I’ll have time to take in the DC Auto Show later this month, but if I do, the entry I’ll be keenest to see won’t be the new Corvette “supercar” or the Acura TLX prototype, as much as those speak to my love of cars. Instead it’s the Ford “C-MAX Solar Energi” concept, an unlikely marriage of electric vehicle (EV) and solar photovoltaic panels (PV). The car previously debuted at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
This isn’t the first time a carmaker has put solar panels on the roof of a car, even if we exclude competitions like the Solar Car Challenge and many other efforts to test how far or fast one-off solar vehicles designed by engineering students or enthusiasts could travel. However, I believe this is the first time an “OEM” has added solar panels to a production car for the purpose of providing a significant fraction of its motive power.
C-Max Crossover: Ford’s hope to compete with Toyota’s Prius
Taking advantage of unpredictable gas prices and a rising consumer interest in all things green, auto-maker Ford is finally making its way into sales of dedicated hybrid vehicles with its freshly announced 2013 C-Max line.
The hybrid auto niche has long been dominated by Toyota and its popular Prius, with major players lke Hyundai, Kia and General Motors working their way into top spots as well, making Ford a relative latecomer at risk of being overshadowed by the competition; while Ford has released hybrid versions of its existing models in years past, the C-Max compact crossover stands as its first dedicated hybrid line.
In 2009 and 2010 we should see a lot of hybrids and fully electric cars hitting the roads. I spent a little time this weekend reviewing the potential offerings. Here is where some of the more frequently-mentioned offerings stand. 1. The Aptera 2e The Aptera 2e This is probably the most unusual offering. I first mentioned the Aptera in a story last year, and the roll-out is still on target for Q4 of this year. It is a 3-wheeled vehicle, made of light-weight composites. The shape is very aerodynamic to minimize wind resistance. The batteries recharge in 8 hours, and the car reportedly has a range of 100 miles. The cost is going to be in the range of $30,000,… Continue»
The Dodge Circuit Electric Vehicle Regular readers know that I am hopeful that electric cars can start to become one of our transportation options in the next few years. There are several reasons for this. First and foremost, it is because there are so many different options for making electricity. We currently make it primarily from coal and nuclear power, but over time renewable electricity production is expected to grow sharply. The car performs the same way whether the electricity comes from coal, natural gas, wind, geothermal, or solar power. The second major factor behind my desire to see us move toward electric transportation is that the efficiencies of electric motors are much higher than for gasoline engines. In an… Continue»
It seems that the reality of our situation is sinking in at Ford: Ford’s trouble: $4 gas is here to stay NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — Ford Motor Co. executives say they believe that $4 gas is here to stay, resulting in a fundamental consumer shift away from gas-guzzling SUVs and pickups and causing continued losses at its core North American auto unit. The company said it expects gas prices to remain in the range of $3.75 to $4.25 a gallon through the end of 2009. And that expectation prompted the nation’s No. 3 automaker to announce deep production cuts for what has been its best selling and most profitable vehicles for several decades and could lead to more plant closings… Continue»
Some of the consequences of very high oil prices are pretty predictable. Homes way out in the suburbs are likely to lose value. Prices will rise across the board for goods and services. Airlines will struggle. And gas guzzlers will be much less attractive: Gas costs deflate prices on used SUVs High fuel prices are causing the value of used SUVs to plummet, often below what’s listed in the buying guides many shoppers use to negotiate with dealers. “The dealer is going to offer a price, and the customer is going to be ticked off,” says Tom Webb, chief economist for Manheim, operators of auctions where car dealers buy their used-vehicle inventories. “The guidebooks have not caught up to the… Continue»
Looks like people are beginning to respond to high gas prices: Toyota Prius sales pass Ford Explorer Americans bought more Toyota Prius hybrid gas-electric hatchbacks last year than Ford Explorer sport-utility vehicles, the top-selling SUV for more than a decade. The change of fortune, buried in U.S. vehicle-sales data for 2007 and unthinkable a few years ago, will find an echo at this year’s Detroit auto show, which starts Sunday. While Americans’ love for powerful gas guzzlers remains strong, a slowing economy and high gasoline prices are forcing buyers to lower their sights. While Prius sales soared 69% last year, demand for the Explorer was less than a third of its 2000 peak. As I have said before, we have… Continue»