Details of Ford Focus EV Still Unclear

2012 Ford Focus ElectricToday I heard that the 2012 Ford Focus EV is available. Last I checked Ford had slated the vehicle for April, so it’s entirely possible that the EV is out. If the Focus EV is indeed available, Ford needs to get the word out. It seems as though they want it to be a failure. I haven’t seen a single advertisement (on TV, hulu, YouTube, etc) for the Focus.

It looks like they might be available in ‘select markets’: http://www.ford.com/electric/focuselectric/2012/reservations/

I looked up the range and I’m somewhat in shock with what Ford has posted. I really don’t know what to think. With this sort of info coming from the company that made the car, I’m not sure want a Ford Focus.

• Q.What is the Electric driving range?

• A.The 2012 Ford Focus Electric is projected to be the first five-passenger all-electric vehicle with a combined fuel efficiency rating of over 100 MPGe.*

For those of you who may be unfamiliar, MPGe is not the same as range. MPGe, like MPG is a way of measuring efficiency. While I don’t expect the average consumer to entirely understand this concept, I would think that a company like Ford would be able to figure this out, especially in their FAQs section where people go looking for answers. While Ford doesn’t answer the range question here, they do imply that the Focus EV has a 100 mile range in another FAQ:

• Q.What do I do if I want to go farther than 100 miles in one trip?

• A.Should you wish to drive farther than the vehicle’s maximum range in one trip, Ford is collaborating with MapQuest to provide information to help you locate charging stations along your route and plan your trip accordingly using the MyFord® Mobile App.

But according to the following (on the same webpage, remember), in order to get 100 miles with 100MPGe, they need a 33.7kWhr battery.

• Q.What is MPGe? Why is it on the label? How is it displayed? How is it calculated?

• A.MPGe stands for Miles Per Gallon equivalent, and is the EPA’s method for comparing the relative efficiency of all-electric and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles to conventional gas-powered vehicles. Instead of showing how far the vehicle can go on one gallon of gasoline, it represents the number of miles the vehicle can go using a quantity of fuel with the same energy content as a gallon of gasoline. The EPA’s formula equates one gallon of gasoline to 33.7 kilowatt-hours of electricity. Focus Electric will receive MPGe ratings for city, highway and combined driving.

BUT the website says that the vehicle has a 23kWhr battery. Assuming you are using 100% of that, that’s 68 miles. Of course, they build in a buffer so you use maybe 80-85% of that, so the range with those numbers would be around 60 miles.

I was considering getting a Ford Focus EV, but the lack of consistency in information coming from a single website is scary to me.

Ok so according to fueleconomy.gov, their Focus goes 76 miles per charge. Doing the math I did above, but backwards resulted in the Focus needing 23 usable kWhr of batteries, leaving about a 1kWhr buffer, which isn’t much when it comes to EV batteries (the Volt, which is on the extreme side, has about a 7kWhr buffer). It is interesting to see that the Focus more efficient and has more range than the Leaf.

I’ve been considering the Focus, Fit EV, motorcycles, and even the CODA Sedan. Still, unless something drastically changes, in the end I’ll probably get a LEAF.
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