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Ford Focus Plug-in Hybrid

The 2012 Ford Focus will be offered as a gasoline model, all-electric or Plug-in Hybrid. Ford will keep the Focus on the outside looking pretty much the same while the guts of the vehicle uses leading edge automotive technology. Purely electric vehicles are making a comeback, but will they survive the onslaught from PHEVs (Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicles)?


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Electric vehicles were introduced years ago, however, due to limited battery technology and driving range, the vehicles faded quickly into obscurity. The question remains whether companies like Ford and Nissan can abate consumers' fears in electric vehicles? The answer is yes, if the consumer understands the limitations of the all-electric vehicle. The answer is yes again when consumers choose a Ford Focus PHEV which is only partly battery powered and partly motivated by a small gasoline engine.


Unfortunately, the design is only a slightly more modern looking Ford Focus, outside of the new front grille, there isn't much to discuss as Ford has chosen to keep the same appeal for its PHEV, all-electric and gasoline counterparts. The interior dash board and media center are high tech, yet they conform to old designs, instead of breaking free of the traditional placements and mountings.

Technical Specifications

One of the negative factors of a purely electric vehicle (EV) is that anything electric consumes the battery and therefore the distance on which you can drive. Therefore things like air conditioning, radio, television, gps, etc all lend to fears of depleting the energy reserve and being stranded. This leads straight into the number one fear of consumers, running out of power (or range anxiety as some call it).

As it can take several hours to recharge a battery, what happens when you get stranded on the side of the road? The answer is a tow truck, unfortunately. The Ford Focus, just like the Nissan Leaf, will only attain an approximate 100 mile range per charge. With such limited mobility, many families and commuters will avoid all-electric vehicles.

The main benefit and attraction to purely electric vehicles is the environmental impact - no CO2 emissions from driving, which means a separation from our reliance as gasoline for fuel. Most likely, purely electric vehicles will be a hit for city folk, home bounds, and taxis with limited range.

Once you weigh the benefits of a purely electric vehicle, price, and other plug-in hybrid models, it makes you wonder why anyone would purchase a purely electric vehicle. All new plug-in hybrids are outfitted with switches to purely electric driving and you only need to switch back when the battery is low.

The second benefit to a PHEV is the range, usually 400 to 600 miles on a tank of gas and a charge of electricity. Lastly is the price point, even with the federal governments tax rebate of up to $7,500 - it barely makes it less than diesel hybrid vehicles. The Ford Focus is priced at $30,000 (before taxes, fees, and rebates).

In conclusion, electric vehicles are ideal once their range limitations can be lifted, but also, once the method in which we generate electricity is altered. Right now, most electricity in the United States comes from coal fired power plants, which are extremely toxic and create CO2 emissions, thereby counteracting the electric vehicles eco-friendly state. Diesel hybrids are poised to take over the market as they assuage consumer fears and still help to protect their wallets, the environment, and provide the same look and feel of driving a powerful vehicle (as electric vehicles lack torque and speed).

At this point, Ford has not released a lot of information about its Focus electric, PHEV or gasoline models. In a couple more months all should be clear.