Fields Confirms Development of Dedicated Ford EV
According to Automotive News, Fields said that Ford plans to be “among the leaders or in a leadership position” when it comes to delivering a mass-produced, affordable electric vehicle with a 200-mile range.
“Clearly that’s something we’re developing for,” Fields said during Ford’s first-quarter earnings conference call. Fields has openly discussed the likelihood of a Ford EV as far back as November 2014, when he told Yahoo! Finance that a dedicated Ford EV was consistent with the company’s product direction.
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Fields did not offer up any additional details on the project, but it is widely believed that Ford’s EV will be dubbed the Model E. Ford holds a pending trademark application for the name, which both honors the vehicle that made Ford a household name and serves as an (un)intended jab at Tesla.
It is also surmised that Ford will produce this vehicle at its $1.6 billion small car production facility in San Luis Potosi. It is believed that production on the Model E will get underway in 2019.
Ford, in the meantime, is leaning on the Focus Electric to keep it current in the EV race. The 2017 Focus Electric will up the 76-mile range of its predecessor to a nice, even 100 miles, but that would still only be half that of the Bolt and Model 3. Kevin Layden, director of Ford’s electrification programs and engineering, told Auto News that it his belief—and perhaps the company’s—that the Focus Electric will hold the line just fine until such a time where the Model E is ready to roll.
“I think right now with the launch of the Focus Electric at 100 miles, it is going to satisfy a big chunk of the population,” Layden said. “It’s going to be really affordable and a step up from where we are now.”
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News Source: Automotive News (subscription required)