Ford Focus EV - instrument panelEnlarge Photo
Ford Focus EV - battery pack under rear seat, from insideEnlarge Photo
Ford Focus EV - the power electronics sit above the electric motorEnlarge Photo
The Ford Focus EV is still a few years away. Due to market in 2011 as a 2012 model, the Focus EV is still in the development stage. But Editor in Chief John Voelcker over at our sister site GreenCarReports.com got a chance to drive a prototype version of the Focus EV and provided some insight and a brief review of the model.
The prototype version is a product of Ford supplier Magna. Magna will also be responsible for the production version that will be on dealer lots some time in 2011.
High points of the initial drive include the overall refinement of the package. According to Voelcker, the Focus EV mule was one of the most refined, noise free mules they have ever driven. Pre-production vehicles are known to usually have certain faults, but the Focus EV had no squeaks or rattles and was solidly constructed.
The Focus EV had enough torque to spin it's inside front wheel when accelerating through turns and provide ample power for brisk acceleration. The braking system switched between regenerative and regular braking smoothly with no noticeable hiccups throughout the process.
Due to the increased mass of the battery system, Voelcker noted that the vehicle felt heavy, but did not detract from its acceleration. The battery system is designed to be charged in about 6 hours with a 220 volt setup or 12 hours through a 110 volt supply. A full charge allows a cruising range of 100 miles.
The gauge system incorporates a battery meter in place of a tachometer and a small charge meter. With the approval by customers and reviewers of the Fusion Hybrid gauge system, you may see changes to the gauge cluster as the vehicle goes into production.
The Ford Focus EV is still a few years away, but this mule version is surprisingly almost ready to hit the roads. According to Voelcker, the only thing making this mule stand out as a mule is the big red kill switch located inside.
By the time the Focus EV reaches the market, the new Ford Focus will be on our roads. Adding an electric version to the much talked about new Focus will help sales and will give Ford its first compact EV in the states.