And then there were 67...

Ford on Monday said it tapped its first 67 dealers to sell its Focus Electric, the automaker's first foray into mass-produced electric-drive vehicles.

Such dealers have met requirements such as completing certain electric-vehicle training courses and installing at least two on-site charging stations. Those dealers will be receiving their first Focus EVs later this spring, and, as expected, are all in California, New York and New Jersey.

Ford, which started making the Focus EV in Michigan late last year, last month said the EV would be featured in a reality-competition series called "Plugged In" that will be broadcast on Yahoo! starting next month. That series, which will involve two-person teams competing in a scavenger-hunt type competition, will take place in 10 U.S. markets, and will be created by "Project Runway" and "Top Chef" producer Magic Elves.

Ford also released a map laying out how the car will be rolled out nationwide during the rest of the year (see above; click to enlarge). The states that will be receiving the car this summer are Oregon, Washington, Arizona, Colorado, Texas, Michigan, Illinois, Georgia, Florida, Massachusetts, Maryland, Virginia and North Carolina.
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First Ford Dealers Certified to Sell Focus Electric – America's Most Efficient Five-Seater – with National Rollout to Follow

First 67 dealers are certified and ready to sell Ford's first gas-free, all-electric car – the 2012 Ford Focus Electric – arriving this spring
Focus Electric is scheduled to be available nationwide by the end of 2012
The 2012 Focus Electric is America's most fuel-efficient five-passenger vehicle – certified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to offer the equivalent of 110 miles per gallon (MPGe) city
Focus Electric will be joined later by the new 2013 Ford Fusion – aiming to be America's most fuel-efficient gas- and hybrid-powered midsize sedans – to help create one of the industry's most fuel-efficient car lineups

Click on graphic to download PDF.

DEARBORN, Mich., April 30, 2012 – The first Ford dealers have been officially certified to sell the company's first all-electric car – the 2012 Ford Focus Electric – America's most fuel-efficient five-seater with an EPA rating of 110 MPGe city that is capable of being recharged in nearly half the time as Nissan Leaf.

The 67 dealers are in California, New York and New Jersey –markets that account for a large percentage of electrified vehicle sales and will begin seeing the Focus Electric later this spring. By the end of the year, Focus Electric will be available nationwide.

Certification means the dealerships have met the automaker's guidelines for dealers selling electric vehicles – including installation of at least two onsite charging stations and participation in highly specialized training in the field of electric vehicles.

"The amount of hard work and resources dealers put into becoming certified really is a testament to how excited they are, how excited customers are and how excited we are about electric vehicles, starting with Focus Electric," said David Gutman, Ford's field operations manager.

With more motor power, standard features, passenger room and faster charging time than Nissan Leaf, dealers have been eager to start selling Focus Electric.

First, however, they had to satisfy a list of other requirements to become certified, including:
One of the two required charging stations at the dealership must be in the customer area and the other must be in the service area
At least one Focus Electric must be available at all times for demonstrations and events
Of the sales consultant, sales manager, service advisor and service manager jobs at each location, 80 percent must meet specific electric vehicle training certification requirements that cover topics including advanced knowledge of electrification
Each showroom will have point-of-purchase display materials including digital assets and window signage
Participation in a Ford Go Green Dealer Onsite Facility Assessment to identify energy and cost saving opportunities with a goal of facilitating energy efficiency, lower operating expenses and carbon footprint reduction
Fuel efficiency for all
The Focus range soon will be joined by the new 2013 Ford Fusion – aiming to be America's most fuel-efficient gas- and hybrid-powered midsize sedans – to help create one of the industry's most fuel-efficient car lineups. The Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid is projected to become America's most fuel-efficient midsize sedan by achieving more than 100 MPGe in electric mode.

"Ford is giving customers the power of choice for leading fuel economy regardless of what type of vehicle or powertrain technology they choose," said Eric Kuehn, chief nameplate engineer, Focus Electric. "The Focus and Fusion are great examples of how we transformed our fleet of cars, utilities and trucks with leading fuel efficiency."

Focus Electric has been certified by the EPA to offer 110 MPGe in the city and 105 MPGe combined, beating Nissan Leaf by 6 MPGe.

Focus Electric also offers a faster charging system that allows for a full recharge in nearly half the time of Nissan Leaf thanks to a larger on-board charger. A unique value charging feature powered by Microsoft is designed to help owners charge their vehicles at the cheapest utility rates, which makes charging Focus Electric less costly than charging Nissan Leaf.

Production of the Focus Electric began in December 2011 at Ford's Michigan Assembly Plant in Wayne, Mich. More information about MAP can be found here.

After first being available in California, New York and New Jersey, Focus Electric will be available in 19 markets across the U.S. by summer's end, nationwide by the end of the year.

More information about Ford's electrified vehicle lineup – including press releases and other related material – can be found online here. Photos of the Focus Electric can be found here.

# # #

About Ford Motor Company
Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 164,000 employees and about 70 plants worldwide, the company's automotive brands include Ford and Lincoln. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford and its products worldwide, please visit http://corporate.ford.com.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 20 Comments
      Spec
      • 1 Day Ago
      I guess it is not surprising that it looks vaguely like a Presidential electoral map.
        EZEE
        • 1 Day Ago
        @Spec
        Hmmmmmm, so Obama got Texas and Florida, Romney got Pennsylvania, and looks like Ron Paul picked up Ohio, South Carolina, New Mexico, Indiana, and a few new England states! Obama's like, 'I got Texas? Alright!'
      Wingsnbeer
      • 1 Day Ago
      The average motorists isn't going to by the EV Focus. IMHO It will mostly be fleet sales, enthusiasts, and wealthy city dwellers. EVs are not practical for the average motorist and I'm sure Ford's sales estimates will reflect that. I'm waiting the the C-MAX Engeri before deciding on my next vehicle.
      dg
      • 1 Day Ago
      http://tinyurl.com/evcomparison
      goodoldgorr
      • 1 Day Ago
      I don't think that they will sale a lot of focus ev because it just have a battery and also it cost nearly as much as the volt which have a battery and a gasoline electric generator. Between the volt and the focus and leaf, consumer as we notice last month choose more and more the volt concept over the hassle of having just a battery.
        SVX pearlie
        • 1 Day Ago
        @goodoldgorr
        IMO, the strategy is publicity & marketing, not actual sales. Hence, CA & NY, where it's a $40k ornament in the showroom to sell more reasonably-priced hybrids. If Ford wanted actual sales, it'd be priced like the "Leaf" Versa EV, not like the Chevy Volt.
          throwback
          • 1 Day Ago
          @SVX pearlie
          Perhaps they simply don't want to lose money for more sales. It seems to me the car is priced so they make a profit on each one they sell. Mullaly has said the battery costs approximately 15K, add that to a similiarly speced Titanium and you get about 40K
          SVX pearlie
          • 1 Day Ago
          @SVX pearlie
          Unquestionably, the COGS on Magna is a lot higher. Much smaller company to spread overhead, less overall volume commit, and an extra set of hands taking profit.
          MTN RANGER
          • 1 Day Ago
          @SVX pearlie
          I am thinking that having Magna produce all of the components may be costing Ford more than if it was done in house. I have a feeling that the COGS for Ford is much higher than Nissan.
        Vlad
        • 1 Day Ago
        @goodoldgorr
        There is no hassle in having just a battery. GM was working through an inventory it has accumulated, Nissan was still supply-constrained.
      dg
      • 1 Day Ago
      http://nissan.asc-nissan.com/nissan_compare/NNAComparator/Compare.jsp?clientID=273266&tool=home.compare.link&#params:main=competitorselect~acodes=XGC20NIC161A0,USC20FOC291A0~submenu=results
      EZEE
      • 1 Day Ago
      He said, 'Ford tapped its first 67 dealers' Ford is getting more than me.... :D
      Austin Too
      • 1 Day Ago
      A question that has come up in previous FFE posts has been "How many does Ford intend to sell?" Ford has not released any projection, although Ford's CEO Alan Mullaly has said he would be OK if the number were 5,000 in 2012. That number might make sense for a couple of reasons. First, the retail rollout is just beginning and it will take some time before dealers have demo units and cars to sell. Second, Ford will be launching the C-Max Hybrid and later the C-Max Energi PHEV in the same plant where the Focus and FFE are built which could affect FFE production as they are phased in. Ongoing, it's a bit harder to determine. The FFE is mixed in the plant so volume can be adjusted up or down based on demand. There is one key in the supply base. Magna's new plant in Grand Blanc, MI will be supplying motors, inverters, and engine controllers. Their stated motor capacity is 10k upa on one shift. Nobody wants to run a plant on one shift, so my best guess is that the nominal FFE volume projection is 20k upa with an upward bound of around 30k upa or maybe a bit more before actions would have to be taken to break bottlenecks.
        Greg
        • 1 Day Ago
        @Austin Too
        I don't believe that Ford intends to compete with the Leaf & Volt. They are releasing the eFocus for green cred, good press, and to stay up on the tech. Since they don't have to commit resources like assembly line space (like GM does with the Volt), and since it hasn't been hijacked & kidnapped by the govt & politics to push anyone's agenda, Ford doesn't suffer if it doesn't sell.
      dg
      • 1 Day Ago
      The Focus Electric is a much better car than the Leaf. It's worth the few extra thousand dollars. If you run through the list of features in the comparison on Nissan's own website, you can clearly see the advantages and luxuries it has ove the Leaf. Also, made in USA!!! I wish Ford would have pushed it real hard and gotten the price down even a bit further.
        Neil Blanchard
        • 1 Day Ago
        @dg
        Luxuries? The Leaf my sister-in-law owns has everything I could want; including an automatic Bluetooth connection not only for the phone, but also for music. What advantages are you referring to? And very soon, the Leaf will be built in Tennessee. For me, the Leaf's battery pack location is key. The Focus has it in the trunk, so the Cg is poor, AND it fills a lot of the trunk space. The Leaf has a huge trunk. Neil
        Vlad
        • 1 Day Ago
        @dg
        Remember, we are all friends :) The real problem is the ICE car! Plus, even if Focus EV is better, I would take (and I have taken) a car that I can buy over a car I cannot buy.
          EZEE
          • 1 Day Ago
          @Vlad
          hear, effing, hear. Too often we ignore the 'we are all friends' thing. Regardless of belief, we all want the electrics to grow, succeed, grow more, succeed more. Now if we can convince the ABG writers of this detail....
        Spec
        • 1 Day Ago
        @dg
        It may be worth more than Leaf for many, I'll give it that. But not $5K more. And the Leaf is priced a bit too high right now as is.
      floorman56
      • 1 Day Ago
      Screw the flyover?
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