Back in late 2015, we learned Ford would invest $4.5 billion to add electric vehicle technology to 13 new models appearing by 2020. However, we didn’t know how that plan would work as far as the actual cars and trucks were concerned. After GM and Tesla showcased their long-range EVs and other automakers followed suit, many wondered if Ford’s plug-in plans weren’t going on the back burner.
Well, those cars will come eventually, but they will take a while. In the first days of 2017, we learned about the first seven models the company will electrify by the start of the next decade. As company officials hinted throughout 2016, Ford did not treat its most iconic vehicles as too good for the technology. Both the world’s best-selling truck and the industry’s most recognizable sports car will get battery-powered boosts in the coming years.
Here are seven new cars Ford confirmed it will produce as part of its electric vehicle push.
1. Transit Custom Plug-in Hybrid
Ford sold more plug-in hybrids than any other automaker in 2016, so it was surprising we did not see another model for U.S. consumers in this electric push. European consumers will get a plug-in hybrid Transit Custom van, however. According to the automaker, it will be on the Continent by 2019 and aim to reduce fleet operating costs.
2. Hybrid Ford F-150
It may be America’s best-selling truck for 40 years running, but Ford will add another dimension to F-150 for 2020. By then, an F-150 hybrid will be on the U.S. market. Ford says it will use electric power for towing purposes and double as a mobile generator using its EV battery. As it is, F-150 is the most economical full-size pickup, so expect that run to continue.
3. Hybrid Police Interceptor
Many sports car makers have used electric power to boost acceleration, and Ford will do the same with hybrid police interceptors. Law enforcement will get pursuit-rated models to put criminals on edge. We don’t see why they wouldn’t also get remarkable economy just making the rounds, too. Or use EV power to quietly approach perps.
4. Autonomous Ford Fusion Hybrid
We have known about Ford’s advanced autonomous vehicle program for some time now. In the opening weeks of 2017, we got confirmation it will be a Fusion Hybrid and debut by 2021. This model will be fully autonomous (i.e., Level 4) and looks pegged for ride-hailing services to start. Drivers won’t be welcome in this one.
5. All-electric SUV
Ford gave electric vehicle enthusiasts exactly what they wanted: a long-range model confirmed for 2020. Shooting for a range of 300 miles on a single charge, the small all-electric SUV would hit all the right buttons. It looks like Ford is jumping over mid-range (i.e., 200-mile) models and planning an EV that could feasibly replace any gas-powered car. (In 2015, we asked EV chief Mike Tinskey if Ford considered 200 miles enough or if 300 was a better goal. He answered, “Good question.”)
6. Ford Mustang Hybrid
With a four-cylinder Ecoboost Mustang already on the road, Ford already laid the groundwork for variations on this enduring theme. By 2020, North American consumers will get the first hybrid pony car in the form of a V8 Mustang. Engineers expect to tap into electric motors’ low-end torque to get the car accelerating even faster than it does today. We are curious to see how it turns out.
7. Second Police Interceptor
The second of two hybrid police interceptors is headed for production in Chicago. Ford said it will also be pursuit-rated and get outfitted at the automaker’s dedicated shop for cop car mods in the Windy City. While there was no precise date mentioned here, production should begin later in the decade.
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