Ford was the first U.S. carmaker to sell a hybrid-electric vehicle, as well as the second to offer a plug-in hybrid.
But since 2013, the carmaker hasn't released a single new electrified vehicle—including battery-electric cars as well as the two types of hybrids.
Now, Ford has released details of its slightly updated 2019 Ford Fusion mid-size sedan, which includes not only the Hybrid version but also the Energi plug-in hybrid model.
The front-end styling has been mildly revised, once again, for the seventh model year of the current Fusion generation. It was previously tweaked for the 2017 model year.
The Hybrid gets no significant mechanical updates, but the Energi model—Ford's sole plug-in hybrid for 2019, following the death of the C-Max Energi in late 2017—gets a battery-capacity boost to give it a higher projected electric range rating.
It's not a huge boost, but it's enough to get the Fusion Energi up to the same 25-mile range rating as the 2018 Toyota Prius Prime, the best-selling plug-in hybrid in the U.S. so far this year.
Specifically, the capacity of the pack has risen from 7.6 kilowatt-hours to 9.0 kwh, courtesy of a new cell chemistry that's slightly more energy-dense.
The pack fits within the same form factor as all previous Fusion Energi batteries, according to Jan De Pena, the global chief engineer for the Fusion vehicle line.
In the next-generation Fusion, he added, the battery might be more compact, and placed in a different location. (Under the rear seat, we surmise.)
The new battery continues to hold 84 individual lithium-ion cells, though it weighs 3 percent more than the previous version.
Ford projects that the 9.0-kwh pack in the 2019 Ford Fusion Energi will provide an EPA-rated 25 miles of range, up from 21 miles in the 2018 version.
It's worth noting that the 2013 Ford Fusion Energi was originally released with a 21-mile rating for its all-electric range, but the EPA subsequently lowered that to 19 miles.
2018 Ford Fusion EnergiEnlarge Photo
Ford did not yet have a projection for the 2019 Fusion Energi's combined gasoline and electric range; this year's figure is 610 miles.
The plug-in 2019 Fusion qualifies for a $4,600 federal income-tax credit for buyers.
The company says the 2019 Ford Fusion Energi will be in dealerships by "late summer" this year.
Last week, following little public information about its future product plans after 10 months under new CEO Jim Hackett, Ford released some aspects of its plans for 2020 and later.
It will offer a hybrid version of every SUV it makes, the company, said, along with a few new plug-in hybrids and battery-electric vehicles.
EDITOR'S NOTE: Based on information from a Ford employee at a Detroit media event, an earlier version of this article quoted the capacity of the upgraded 2019 battery pack as 7.9 kwh. The correct capacity is 9.0 kwh, and we have updated the article to reflect that.