Ford Escape hybrid earns $33,000 for Santa Monica Bay group at auction

SUVs just aren't as popular as they used to be. Last June, when Ford donated a 2007 Ford Escape hybrid to the Santa Monica Bay protection group Heal The Bay, the SUV sold for $37,000. A year later, the same company gives the same vehicle (well, a 2008 model) to the same group, but this time the auction price is only $33,000. Ford's announcement of this year's auction (available after the jump) says that sales of Ford hybrid SUVs at this annual event have brought in $195,000 since 2004. Five vehicles divided into $195,000 gives an average of $39,000, so the trend is downward.

Heal The Bay has been working since 1985 to "making Santa Monica Bay and Southern California costal waters safe and healthy again for people and marine life." Aside from the annual hybrid SUV donation, Ford also sponsor's HTB's "Beach Report Card," which grades California beaches from Humboldt County to the Mexican border.

Press Release:


The 2008 Ford Escape Hybrid, the most fuel-efficient SUV sold in America.

* 2008 Ford Escape Hybrid brings in $33,000 at live auction

* Sale supports the work of environmental group Heal the Bay

* Auction totals since 2004 from Ford hybrid SUVs at group's annual event total $195,000

SANTA MONICA, Calif. (May 30, 2008) - The 2008 Ford Escape Hybrid, the most fuel-efficient SUV sold in America, generated $33,000 for the environmental group Heal the Bay at the organization's annual charity auction.

Ford donated a 2008 Escape Hybrid SUV to Heal the Bay, the Santa Monica-based environmental group dedicated to improving water quality along California's coastline.

The Escape Hybrid was the featured auction item at the group's annual "Bring Back the Beach" dinner May 29 at Barker Hangar at the Santa Monica Airport. This is the fifth straight year Ford has provided a hybrid SUV to benefit Heal the Bay. The five-year auction total from Ford hybrid SUVs at Heal the Bay's annual dinner is $195,000.

The winning bidder, Roger Wojahn, outbid numerous others to claim the Escape Hybrid. As co-owner of Wojahn Bros Music, he's familiar with the Escape Hybrid from working closely with Ford in producing their American Idol music videos. "I've been attending the Heal the Bay dinner for over a decade," says Wojahn, a Mar Vista, California resident. "My friends and I reached deep this year and I'm proud to finally have an Escape Hybrid of my own."

Since 1995, Ford Motor Company has supported Heal the Bay and in recent years has been the title sponsor of the group's "Beach Report Card," an annual survey of water quality at California's beaches. The Beach Report Card assigns a letter grade (A-F) based on bacterial levels at beaches along California's coast from Humboldt County to the Mexican border.

"This year's 'Bring Back the Beach' dinner theme was 'Making Waves' - recognition of those whose thoughts, words and actions show that every individual is capable of affecting positive change," said Dr. Mark Gold, president of Heal the Bay. "Ford Motor Company has demonstrated that they are an organization that strives to make waves with their commitment to the environment that ranges from green building to coastal protection."

Earlier this month, Ford announced its donation of 45 specially-equipped Escape Hybrids to the Los Angeles County Lifeguards, a division of the Los Angeles County Fire Department. On May 23 Ford presented the squad with the first 10 four-wheel drive Escape Hybrids for use on rescue patrol along 72 miles of Southern California coastline.

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About Ford Motor Company
Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles in 200 markets across six continents. With about 228,000 employees and about 90 plants worldwide, the company's core and affiliated automotive brands include Ford, Lincoln, Mercury, Volvo and Mazda. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford's products, please visit

About Heal the Bay
Heal the Bay, founded in 1985, is dedicated to making Santa Monica Bay and Southern California costal waters safe and healthy again for people and marine life. It is one of the largest nonprofit environmental organizations in Los Angeles County, with more that 10,000 members. The organization focuses on education, outreach, research and advocacy through programs like Coastal Cleanup Day and its Santa Monica Pier Aquarium. Beach Report Card weekly and annual updates are available at

[Source: Ford]

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