Ford’s Sustainability Roadmap: From EVs to a Future Beyond Cars

6/8/12Follow @bvbigelow

When Dan Kapp, Ford’s director of power-train research and advanced engineering, came through San Diego a week or so before Christmas, he told me the first all-electric Focus cars would arrive here in time for Valentine’s Day.

Yesterday, the Focus EV road show came through town again as part of a promotional tour ahead of the first deliveries of Focus EVs to Ford dealers in San Diego, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. After six months, in other words, Ford still says its Focus EVs will be available in San Diego in the next month or so.

When I checked with a Ford spokesman about the delay, he replied in an email: “Ford began making fleet deliveries at the end of the year last year to several key partners such as Google, MSFT and Apple under limited quantity orders. Full production then ramped up in early 2012 with first deliveries to the San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York and New Jersey. They are now making their way to San Diego as part of a phased roll out with the remaining 19 launch markets. San Diego area dealers actually have Focus Electrics right now, which is exciting. Ford plans to expand sales nationally in early 2013.”

That’s not exactly the way I remember it, but hey, it’s no big deal. (Of course, the skeptical journalist in me wonders if such optimism extends in other ways, such as the Focus EV’s estimated 105 MPGe and EPA-rated 76-mile range.) Nevertheless, I’m rooting for the Focus EV and other electric vehicles to take their rightful place under the sun.

The latest EV road show coincided with a presentation that John Viera, Ford’s global director of sustainability and vehicle environmental matters, gave about the company’s green branding strategy at a conference in San Diego on “sustainable brands.” After his presentation, I got to take a Focus EV for a test drive around the parking lot of the Paradise Point Resort, and ask Viera a few questions.

Xconomy: How soon is the roll-out of Focus EVs in San Diego?

John Viera: They’re going to be coming to the dealerships now. We’re producing them now. I would say, you could probably expect to see … Next Page »

Bruce V. Bigelow is the editor of Xconomy San Diego. You can e-mail him at bbigelow@xconomy.com or call (619) 669-8788 Follow @bvbigelow

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