Ford unveiled its first pure electric car on Friday, and hopes it will steal a march on the competition once it’s on sale later this year.
The zero-carbon-dioxide-emissions, gasoline-free Focus, replaces an engine with a lithium-ion battery pack, will have a range of 100 miles and can be recharged in half the time that its leading competitor, the Nissan Leaf, requires.
’It's not about being first or last,’ said Ford president Mark Fields. ‘It's about bringing choice to the consumers. That's why we decided to electrify the platform and not just one vehicle.’
Electric car sales in the US are predicted to hit 90,000 by 2015.
’We all keep pushing the envelope as we go,’ Fields said of the industry's fierce competition in the electric segment.
Sales will be limited by the lack of public places to recharge such as offices and shopping centres, Bill Ford told reporters in New York:
’We're willing to accept lower sales volumes at first because it's important to show the country, utilities and political leaders that we're ready to go,’ he said.