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The name Paice will be familiar to anyone who's been deep in the weeds of hybrid history, but it will probably be new to anyone who simply drives one. The key part of the story is something called "HyperDrive," which is the name given to a gas-electric powertrain technology developed by Alex Severinsky and patented in 1994. HyperDrive is a way to get the energy from both the electric battery and the engine into the wheels, seamlessly. The patents are held by Paice, which is an unusual company (i

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Ford Focus Electric – Click above for high-res image gallery

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2011 Ford Explorer Live Debut in Southern California – Click above for high-res image gallery

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Jay Leno's Green Car Challenge Ford Focus EV - Click above for high-res image gallery

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Ford Escape PHEV prototype – Click above for high-res image gallery

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Ford Fusion hybrid – Click above for high-res image gallery

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2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid - Click above for high-res image gallery

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Imagine a police chase in Manhattan where a Ford Fusion Hybrid pulls up behind the criminal followed by a few Priuses, an Escape Hybrid and a couple of Altima hybrids. Now, think of the scenario where the criminal, driving his gas-guzzling Hummer, takes off out of the city limits on a long-distance chase. A hundred miles later, the criminal creeps to the side of the road running on nothing but fumes while the NYPD hybrid crew has consumed less than three gallons per vehicle. While this scenario

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Ford Transit Connect Taxi – Click above for high-res image gallery

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2011 Lincoln MKZ Hybrid – Click above for high-res image gallery

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Ford Transit Connect Electric – Click above for high-res image gallery

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Ford Transit Connect Electric – Click above for high-res image gallery

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Next-gen Ford Focus live unveiling – Click above for high-res image gallery

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While automotive sales have been almost universally down in 2009 compared to 2008, Ford has a legitimate reason to crow about its December figures, which are up a third over December of '08 and an impressive 50 percent over November. The green side of the coin, though, looks even better.

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We'll have our monthly By the Numbers post ready lickity split, but here's a little tidbit worth sharing ahead of the full data download. While automotive sales have been almost universally down in 2009 compared to 2008, Ford has a legitimate reason to crow about its December figures, which are up a third over December of '08 and an impressive 50 percent over November.

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2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid - Click above for high-res image gallery

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2009 Ford Escape Hybrid - click above for high res image gallery

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2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid - Click above for high-res image gallery

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Here's all you really need to know about why Ford is suffering in the marketplace. William Clay Ford Jr., speaking to the Associated Press, about the slump in SUV sales and the company's decrease in stock value, said that "the speed with which consumers migrated from gas guzzlers caught the company by surprise".

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