Thursday, July 13, 2006

How can Ford help to "Set America Free" as Joe Lieberman wants?

Bill Ford may have backed away from his pledge for 250,000 Hybrids a year too soon. Over at Alternative Fuel Universe I posted about Senator Joe Lieberman's Op Ed piece on "How To Escape Oil." And a new bill he's co-sponsored the "Set America Free Act." Now as part of this proposed legislation there are requirements for half of all cars sold in the United States to be Hybrid, Hybrid Electric/Plug-In or Alternative Fuel capable. Mr Ford who's been pushing for these technologies and stated that FoMoCo would "Drive American Innovation" would be right behind this and luckily FoMoCo has been working on these technologies already.
Ford's first Hybrid the Escape should have taken the market by storm as a practically sized family friendly ( well compared to a Prius) vehicle. And Ford hasn't been sitting idle with this technology either, Hybrid versions of the Fusion are suposed to be getting close to the market.
Well as for Plug-In Hybrids, to me they sort of defeat the purpose of being a Hybrid, but Ford has experience with Plug-In Electric, both with this Think and a test fleet of Electric Rangers that was sold in California.
And "Alternative Fuel Technology" really means E-85 capable vehicles which Ford has been cranking out for years and you can certainly expect to see an across the board conversion for all Ford models if this legislation is passed. But I've said before, that this is little more than a loop hole if the infrastructure isn't there to supply the E-85.
But Ford has a few other items in their bag of tricks, such as the Hydraulic Launch Assist seen in the SuperChief concept, which is rumored to be coming in 08 or 09.
And lets not forget the work FoMoCo has been doing with Hydrogen power.
And new models featuring a combination of Alternative Fuel and Hybrid technology were featured by Ford over the last few years. Such as the Diesel/Hybrid Bronco concept.
And of course my personal favorite the Reflex, which is also Diesel/Hybrid powered.

What do you think?


Shawn said...

Okay, so where does this end? Should all food makers be forced to produce low fat foods for 1/2 of their production in the name of a better society?

You cannot force people into environmentalism anymore than you can force people to eat rice cakes. People will buy what they want.

If you go ahead and take away choice, do we really have a free society anymore?

Joel A said...

One of the best summaries on Ford's green plans I've seen in a long time. Great job!

CEO Ford, Jr. is known for his green-leanings. I think he's trying to capitalize on that segment of the market. The imports, specially Toyota, currently dominate it but only with a certain number of vehicles (i.e., Prius.) Ford may be trying to do so with the entire Ford brand.

Hmmm. That'd be a good blog post material. Thanks for the assist! :)

Joel A said...

I have a theory that switching to E-85 is a better move for Ford in the long run than hybrids. What do you think?