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Ford livens up its 2020 Explorer SUV lineup with new Hybrid and ST models

Ford Motor Co.’s Explorer family of sports utility vehicles has just been expanded with the arrival of two new models. The base, XLT, Limited and Platinum models of the Explorer are welcoming their newest family members – the Explorer ST and the Explorer Hybrid. All of these models are built at the Ford Chicago Assembly Plant.

The new Ford Explorer Hybrid is the first dedicated hybrid model in the Explorer family. It is powered by a 3.3-liter hybrid powertrain that is expected to deliver 318 hp of total system output, which is sent to the rear wheels of the Explorer Hybrid. Ford is aiming to make the Explorer Hybrid capable of returning more than 500 miles of range before having to refuel.

Furthering the capability of the hybrid powertrain of the new Ford Explorer Hybrid is an all-new 10-speed modular hybrid transmission as well as a liquid-cooled, lithium-ion battery. Since the battery is built into the chassis just below the second-row seats, the cargo and passenger room of the Explorer Hybrid remains the same as it conventionally powered siblings.

Read the entire article Ford livens up its 2020 Explorer SUV lineup with new Hybrid and ST models

Ford C-Max Energi discontinued, C-Max Hybrid to continue assembly until mid-2018

Green Car Reports recently reported that Ford North America has just stopped producing its C-Max Energi. While speaking with Dan Jones, Ford North America’s Communications Mgr., it has been confirmed that the electric version of the C-Max has bowed out of the assembly lines while its hybrid version is expected to come next in the following year.

The recent decision could be due to the C-Max series’ unfulfilled sales expectations. Ford has only delivered a total of 40,690 C-Max Energi plug-in hybrids from October 2012 up to the end of October this year. For a while now, it has also been wildly anticipated that Ford will soon be replacing it with some new models. Given that the company has just started testing its new Ford Escape Energi plugins as well as the expected arrival of the new Ford Focus Energi, the C-Max Energi’s production course has inevitably ended.

For one, The C-Max Energi has never been as popular in the US market. Despite selling a total of 2,374 units in 2012 followed by 7,154 in 2013 and 8,433 in 2014, the sales volume never really took off as much as the Tesla Model S or Nissan LEAF or Toyota Prius or even Chevy’s Volt and Bolt EVs. Even so, Ford has sold as many as 7,591 C-Max plugins in 2015, 7,957 in 2016 and 7,181 in 2017 and has stayed consistently among the top ten hybrid models in the country. Ford only has one remaining plug-in hybrid model under its portfolio and that is the Ford Fusion Energi with the same powertrain.

Read the entire article Ford C-Max Energi discontinued, C-Max Hybrid to continue assembly until mid-2018

Ford will release Expedition and Lincoln Navigator hybrid SUVs in 2019

Most automakers are looking into electrifying their current models; that is, if they have not done so yet. But some manufacturers like Ford have offerings that are being overlooked, until recently. This is because the company finally announced that they will come out with at least four new hybrid vehicles by 2019, Ford reveled when asked by Automotive News. For the first time, they will be electrifying future crossovers and SUVs, unlike before where they just focused on hybrid sedans.

To be more specific, the company said that they will be developing a plug-in hybrid version of the Escape, and a hybrid version of the Expedition. Their upscale line Lincoln will also be following the eco-friendly trend with hybrid versions of the MKC and the Navigator - where the Expedition and Lincoln are scheduled for a 2019 release.

But that’s not all they have in mind as these hybrid SUVs will then be followed by a hybrid Mustang as well as the new F-150. We do not know which models will be released first, but we do know that all six models should be launched in the market by 2020. According to Automotive News, Ford invested around $4.5 billion to bring in 13 EVs and hybrids to the market.

Read the entire article Ford will release Expedition and Lincoln Navigator hybrid SUVs in 2019

Hybrid versions of Ford Mustang and F-150 to arrive in 2020

Ford has good news to customers and potential clients avidly waiting for the hybrid versions of the Ford Mustang and Ford F-150 – they will be coming in the next few years. The Mustang hybrid and the F-150 hybrid are just two of the 13 electrified vehicles that Ford is planning to add to its global lineup.

Seven of these 13 electrified offerings will be launched by the American carmaker in the next five years, including the hybrid versions of the Mustang and the F-150. Ford is planning to introduce the hybrid variant of the F-150 pickup by the end of the decade in North America and the Middle East. Just like the conventional F-150, the hybrid version would offer outstanding towing and payload capacity. If needed, the F-150 hybrid could serve as a mobile generator.

Meanwhile, the hybrid version of the Mustang muscle car will utilize a V8 engine complementing electric motors. Thanks to this setup, the Mustang could offer low-end torque. Ford will build the Mustang Hybrid at its Flat Rock Plant and will launch it in 2020 in North America.

Read the entire article Hybrid versions of Ford Mustang and F-150 to arrive in 2020

Most people in the US have experienced the difficulty of driving in snow in one way or another. It has been a constant challenge because the roads become slippery and road visibility is often an obstacle. In line with this, self-driving vehicles need to be able to navigate through the roads during winter better than present models.

Ford, for example, has disclosed six facts about its self-driving technology that will enable vehicles to brave through the snow conveniently. Ford has built high-resolution 3D maps that will scan the area thoroughly before driving through it.

Ford Fusion Hybrid self-driving cars come with LiDAR technology to first create digital maps of the area where the cars will be driven. Using four LiDAR scanners that yield 2.80 million laser points per second, the vehicle will create digital models of the road and the infrastructures that surround it. The map will then serve as a baseline to identify the position of the vehicle when it is in self-driving mode.

Read the entire article Ford Fusion Hybrid’s self-driving technology is crafted to combat winter obstacles

Ford has commenced output of new Ford Mondeo Hybrid, which is powered by a 2.0-liter gasoline engine backed by an electric motor and 1.4-kWh lithium-ion battery. Considered as the first hybrid electric car built and sold by Ford in Europe, the Mondeo Hybrid could return 67.3 mpg (combined), 100.9 mpg for urban driving – emitting just 99 grams of carbon of dioxide per kilometer travelled.

Roelant de Waard, vice president for Marketing, Sales & Service at Ford of Europe, remarked that the Ford Mondeo Hybrid offers “the best of both worlds” – improved efficiency and reduced emissions of electric power, and the range and performance of a conventional powertrain.

He said the addition of the Mondeo Hybrid to its lineup means that customers will have more options to choose from to optimize running costs. The latest variant of the Mondeo, which has been a good-seller since it was launched in 1993, is built at Ford’s state-of-the-art Valencia site in Spain.

Read the entire article Ford starts building all-new 2015 Mondeo Hybrid

We already know that Toyota is working hard on the next-generation Prius and already delayed the vehicle by 6 months in order to have more time to maximize mpg. And things are getting harder and harder for Toyota as Ford is already working on a new hybrid vehicle that will be a direct rival to the Prius.

Set to arrive in late 2018 the new vehicle will be Ford’s first dedicated hybrid and what’s more interesting is that it will be designed to be marketed only as a hybrid and will not be a variation of a gasoline model just like it did with the Fusion or the C-Max.

Just like the Prius, the new hybrid gasoline-electric car from Ford will be offered in different body styles. In addition, Ford wants to take things even further and plans to offer the different versions of the vehicle’s powertrain such as a more expensive model that can be recharged from any electrical outlet.

Read the entire article Ford planning a new hybrid vehicle to take on the Toyota Prius

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has named the Ford C-MAX Hybrid a Top Safety Pick for second year in a row. IIHS had the 2014 Ford C-MAX Hybrid undergo multiple crash tests – leading to a “good” rating in side crash, roof strength, restraint and seating evaluations.

Steve Kenner, global director, Ford Automotive Safety Office said the carmaker is proud that the C-MAX Hybrid has achieved a Top Safety Pick from the IIHS. Standard safety equipment on the C-MAX Hybrid includes MyKey, AdvanceTrac with Roll Stability Control, driver and passenger airbags and front seat-mounted side-impact airbags.

Add to that list a safety canopy system, SOS Post Crash Alert System and a tire pressure monitoring system. The C-MAX Hybrid comes with available driver-assist features like a rearview camera, active park assist, forward sensing system and reverse sensing system as well as rain-sensing wipers.

Read the entire article 2014 Ford C-MAX Hybrid earns second Top Safety Pick from IIHS

Sales of the Ford C-Max Hybrid went from hot to cold when the carmaker had to lower the vehicle’s estimated fuel economy in August 2013. Now, Ford is trying to figure out how to revive demand for the offering. Joe Hinrichs, Ford's president of the Americas, told Automotive News in an interview at the New York

uto show that there is a need reinvest in the C-Max Hybrid because “it's a great product." Prior to August, the C-Max had fuel economy figures of 47 mpg city/47 highway/47 mpg combined.

But then, Ford faced lawsuits and complaints from customers who claimed their vehicles were not achieving the fuel economy figures as listed on the sticker – forcing the carmaker to restate its estimated fuel economy to 45 mpg city/40 highway/43 mpg combined.

Read the entire article Ford seeks to reignite consumer interest in C-Max Hybrid

The Ford brand will sell over 2.4 million vehicles in the United States in 2013, making it the top -selling marque in the country for four straight years. The brand’s Fusion sedan and hybrid models helped it extends its lead over the Toyota brand. The Ford brand went into December leading against the Toyota marque by 388,825 cars and light trucks, already ahead of the full-year 2012 count pegged at 322,521.

Ford’s dominance in the US reflects the strategy formulated by Ford Motor Co. chief executive Alan Mulally that sees American carmaker flourishing by narrowing its focus. Mulally sold off the Jaguar, Land Rover, Aston Martin and Volvo luxury lines and terminated Mercury while pushing the Ford brand to complement its strengths in pickups and SUVs with more competitive cars.

“We are not overly reliant on any one segment,” John Felice, Ford's vice president of U.S. marketing, sales and service, remarked in a statement, noting that 16 launches lined up this year, the carmaker is seeking to keep its sales momentum going. Ford said that the demand for Fusions and hybrids like the C-Max will help increase Ford-brand sales to retail buyers to the highest levels since 2000.

Read the entire article Fusion, hybrid models helped Ford widen US sales lead over Toyota

Driverless or automated vehicles are slowly gaining the attention of carmakers. This time, Ford Motor Co. joins the list of carmakers developing driverless vehicles. Ford disclosed a partnership with the University of Michigan and State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co. to test how driverless technology can be applied to cut congestion and improve traffic safety.

Ford is using a Fusion Hybrid sedan to test its automated driving technology. The vehicle, recently unveiled in Dearborn, is able to drive itself and will be used for testing. Ford's goal is to advance the technology so that it can be fitted in mainstream vehicles by 2025. Earlier this year, Renault-Nissan chief executive Carlos Ghosn said that they are planning to have driverless cars available by 2020.

Robert Bosch GmbH is also developing a set of technologies for automated driving, but remarked that the technology must be “100-percent safe 100 percent of the time” before it can be marketed. Right now, some of the first features of driverless cars can be found on the road, although they gained quite different receptions. For instance, Toyota’s Lexus division offered an automated parking system in 2006, but later dropped the option due to slow sales.

Read the entire article Ford eyes driverless vehicles on the road by 2025, shows automated Fusion Hybrid

When Ford Motor Co. revised downward the estimated fuel economy of its C-Max hybrid, many thought it would lead to lower demand and lower sales. However, Ford has been posting steady demand and sales for the C-Max and is not implementing any changes in the marketing of the hybrid unit despite its lower mpg rating, global marketing chief Jim Farley told Automotive News in an interview.

According to Farley, the carmaker will continue pushing the C-Max’s fuel economy as its selling point against its key rival Toyota Prius V. He remarked that they still have the “leadership claim over the Prius V.” The C-Max is rated at a combined 43 mpg, while the Prius V is rated at a combined 42 mpg.

Farley said that they see no reason to change the marketing for the C-Max as customer reaction “has been great,” noting they were going to have “another great C-Max month” in August. Farley made the comments a day before Ford disclosed a 12-percent monthly surge of C-Max hybrid sales in August to 3,032 units.

Read the entire article Ford C-Max Hybrid sales still steady despite mpg rating revision

Ford Motor Co. and Toyota Motor Corp. would terminate a partnership to develop gasoline-electric systems for pickups and sports utility vehicles. Raj Nair, Ford’s product development chief, told Bloomberg through telephone that the carmaker is on pace to bring its rear-wheel-drive hybrid system to market later this decade.

He said that Toyota and Ford mutually agreed to end their partnership after the research and development phase. Nair remarked that both Ford and Toyota “gained from each other’s expertise and insight.” He told Bloomberg that they have developed “a lot of expertise in-house” and determined that they could deliver the system on their own. Ford chief executive Alan Mulally and Toyota President Akio Toyoda personally handled the discussions over the partnership, which was announced in August 2011.

After then, Ford has increased sales of hybrid and plug-in versions of the Fusion sedan and the C-Max wagon in the United States, threatening the dominance of the Japanese carmaker in the country’s hybrid market with its Prius.

Read the entire article Ford and Toyota to end hybrid system partnership

Ford Motor Co. will implement some software tweaks to improve the fuel economy of its 2013 Ford Fusion Hybrid and C-Max Hybrid and the Lincoln MKZ Hybrid. The tweaks will be available to around 77,000 owners of the 2013 model hybrids. Ford will implement the tweaks for 2014 model hybrids at its plant.

The Fusion and C-Max hybrids had promised to deliver a combined 47 mpg, but tests by Consumer Reports magazine in 2012 showed that they failed to meet their published fuel efficiency numbers. The city and highway driving tests showed that the Fusion only achieved 39 mpg and while the C-Max averaged 37 mpg.

The changes, however, will not affect Ford's mpg labels. Raj Nair, Ford product development chief, said in a statement that the tweaks will provide customers with improved “on-road fuel economy satisfaction.” C.J. O'Donnell, Ford manager of electrified vehicle marketing, said that they have already notified dealers of the tweaks, which they would implement themselves.

Read the entire article Ford to make software tweaks to improve mpg of its hybrids

Ford is slowly but surely chipping away Toyota's dominance of the hybrid vehicle market. In the first five months of 2013, Ford sold 34,517 hybrids, which is still a small number compared to Toyota's 141,849. Jeremy Acevedo, an analyst at Edmunds.com, told Automotive News that while Toyota still commands the overwhelming majority of the hybrid market, Ford has established itself as the "second-largest make."

Acevedo noted that Ford managed to increase its share of the hybrid car market from 2012 to the first five months of 2013, thanks to its stylistic 2013 Ford C-Max Hybrid and 2013 Fusion Hybrid. He added that while Toyota has become "synonymous with the green car," Ford has "done an admirable job" chipping that away.

C.J. O'Donnell, Ford's marketing manager for electrified vehicles, remarked that they have "taken a big bite" from Toyota, noting that Ford managed to more than double its share in just more than a year. Ford has launched a series of amusing ads in TV and the Internet. The ads, dubbed the Hybrid Games, pits the C-Max against the Prius and Prius v.

Read the entire article Ford is eating away part of hybrid market from Toyota

Ford Motor Co. managed to surpass its full-year hybrid sales record set in 2010 in just the first five months of 2013. Ford expects to post around 37,000 hybrid vehicle sales in January-May 2013, which is effectively higher that the 35,496 unit full-year record in 2010. Year-on-year comparison gives Ford over a 375-percent increase over the first five months of 2012.

Ford is now the No. 2 carmaker in the United States in terms of hybrid vehicle sales, next to Toyota. The carmaker now holds a 15.5-percent market share through April 2013 from just 3 percent in 2012. 

Ford C-MAX Hybrid and Ford Fusion Hybrid remains a good attractor of new customers to the Ford brand, with conquest sales of 63 percent and 67 percent respectively. Ford’s new hybrid lineup continues to entice new customer from Toyota and Honda. Most of Ford’s conquest sales come from Toyota.

Read the entire article Ford breaks full-year hybrid vehicle sales record in 5 months

With hopes of unseating Toyota from its top spot in sales of gasoline-electric models, Ford Motor Co. has announced that it will beat its own record for the full year for U.S. hybrid sales this month due to the demand for its Fusion and C-Max models. Erich Merkle, Ford's U.S. sales analyst, said that in April, the Ford’s hybrid deliveries reached a monthly record of 8,481 units. So far this year, the total is at 29,561 units.

Ford had set an annual sales record of 35,496 units in 2010. The Automotive News Data Center said that through April, Ford sold 13,891 Fusion hybrids and 13,285 C-Maxs in the U.S. During the past year, CEO Alan Mulally released the new C-Max hybrids and electric versions of its redesigned Fusion sedan.

Ford is putting up these models against Toyota’s Prius hybrids, which have dominated the market since the early 2000s. Ford’s strategy also includes introducing additional smaller cars that are more fuel-efficient to go together with its impressive lineup of pickups and utility vehicles.

Read the entire article Ford wants to beat its own record for U.S. hybrid sales

Ford Motor Co. is facing a suit in United States District Court in Philadelphia filed by Pennsylvania vehicle owners who claim that the carmaker’s hybrid models failed to deliver promised fuel-efficiency numbers. According to a complaint filed Tuesday, the 2013 Ford Fusion Hybrid and Ford C-Max Hybrid models provide worse fuel economy than the advertised figure of 47 miles per gallon.

Car owners alleged that inaccurate representations allowed Ford to falsely claim that those models outperformed rival models. According to the complaint, the plaintiffs are “some of the tens of thousands of consumers” who bought a Fusion Hybrid or C-Max Hybrid, only to be stuck with underperforming and less valuable vehicles that impose higher fuel costs on owners.

The Ford Fusion was the sixth best-selling model in the US in the first three quarters of 2013. In March, Fusion was being sold faster and at higher prices than the Toyota Camry and the Honda Accord.

Read the entire article Ford hybrids facing lawsuit for failing to deliver advertised 47 mpg

Ford Motor Co. disclosed that the United States Environmental Protection Agency may modify its procedures for testing the mileage of hybrid vehicles. Raj Nair, Ford's product development chief, noted at the Deutsche Bank Global Auto Industry Conference in Detroit that following tests by Consumer Reports magazine, a number of Toyota Motor Corp.'s Prius hybrid models exhibited higher fuel-economy deficits against EPA estimates than the Ford Fusion hybrid and C-Max hybrid.

Nair remarked that the shortfalls reflected a lot of differences against the EPA label for all carmakers. He said that several factors like speed and outside temperature could influence the differences in actual fuel economy compared with EPA ratings.

The Ford Fusion hybrid and C-Max hybrid promised to deliver 47 miles (76 kilometers) per gallon, but during tests conducted by Consumer Reports, the models’ ratings dropped 17 percent to 21 percent, according to a statement by the magazine in December 2012. According to Consumer Reports, its tests showed that the Ford Fusion hybrid achieved 39 mpg, while the C- Max hybrid averaged 37 mpg in both city and highway driving.

Read the entire article Ford says US EPA may change mpg-testing procedures for hybrids

Ford has been putting a great deal of time and energy into the development of hybrid vehicles such as the 2013 Ford Fusion, and this seems set to pay off. According to a recent Ford press release, the 2013 Ford Fusion was just named America's most fuel-efficient sedan as well as Green Car of the Year.

The auto manufacturer predicts that news like this will help fuel sales of hybrids in the next sales quarter, making it the company's most potentially successful quarter for hybrid vehicles yet. Although this remains to be seen, it is indicative of a consumer demand for greater efficiency and convenience in hybrid vehicles. With an increase in hybrid vehicles available at motoring.com.au and other listings sites, Ford is just one of many companies stepping up to meet this demand.

Fuel Efficiency of Ford Hybrids

Read the entire article Ford Predicts an Increase in Hybrid Sales