Ford Focus EVEnlarge Photo
Ford has offered limited numbers of hybrid-electric vehicles since 2004, first the Escape Hybrid compact crossover and now the well-received 2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid sedan. It is taking its next cautious step into new green technology by planning to offer a low-volume electric version of its upcoming, completely redesigned 2012 Ford Focus compact.
Before this car, Ford will also offer an electric version of its 2010 Ford Transit Connect small commercial delivery van. But that vehicle is likely to be restricted to businesses that install the necessary charging infrastructure for small fleets of electric vehicles. The 2012 Focus EV will be Ford's first electric car aimed at ordinary consumers.
Jay Leno recently demonstrated a more recent prototype than the one we drove last summer. Ours was a converted U.S.-market 2009 Ford Focus four-door sedan; Leno's was the completely different European Focus, in this case a five-door hatchback.
But the production Focus EV, which will be built in the same Michigan factory as the standard gasoline 2012 Ford Focus, will be the all-new, global design that Ford is expected to unveil at next month's Detroit Auto Show.
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