Click above for a high-res gallery of the Ford Transit Connect
The Michigan Economic Development Corporation has granted Ford Motor Company a $55 million incentive in refundable tax credits. The incentive will come from the new Michigan Advanced Battery Credits initiative and is supposed to help Ford push forward with its plans to introduce four new electric vehicles to the American market by 2012. Lithium ion battery packs are likely to account for the bulk of the costs associated with developing usable electric vehicles.
The first vehicle we are expecting to see from the Blue Oval is an all-electric van based on the Transit Connect platform, which should be ready by 2010. Next up, and probably more exciting to most consumers, will likely be a new electric compact car based on the next-gen Ford Focus platform and built in collaboration with Magna International. Expect that car to hit the market in limited quantities in 2011. A year later, Ford's first plug-in hybrid models should be ready for public consumption as well.
FORD RECEIVES MICHIGAN TAX CREDITS FOR FUTURE ELECTRIC VEHICLES, BATTERY DEVELOPMENT
* Ford receives $55 million incentive in refundable tax credits from Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) to continue work in electric vehicle and battery development.
* Incentive will help accelerate Ford's recently announced aggressive electrification strategy, designed to bring four electrified vehicles to market by 2012.
DEARBORN, Mich., Feb. 17, 2009 – Ford Motor Company received a $55 million incentive from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) for its work in advanced battery and electrical vehicle development. Ford will receive refundable tax credits through the new Michigan Advanced Battery Credits initiative, announced today by Governor Jennifer Granholm.
The first of its kind in the country, the law provides refundable tax credits to encourage companies to invest in electric vehicle engineering and advanced automotive battery research in Michigan.
"Ford appreciates Michigan's proactive positioning in support of these advanced technologies, which we believe are at the heart of a new generation of vehicles," said Curt Magleby, director, Government Affairs. "Incentives to help concentrate research and engineering related to electric vehicles in Michigan will help position the state to become a leader in this emerging technology."
Approved by the Michigan Economic Growth Authority, the incentive will be used to accelerate Ford's plans to produce next-generation hybrids, plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and battery electric vehicles.
"These promising technologies give us the opportunity to transform our transportation and energy future," said Nancy Gioia, director, Sustainable Mobility Technologies and Hybrid Vehicle Programs. "Government support is essential to achieving the potential for electrified vehicles in the future. Michigan's groundbreaking program accelerates our ability to expand and focus our engineering and research efforts here."
Ford's southeast Michigan operations already are home to some of the most advanced automotive research, technology and engineering development facilities in the world. This incentive will help ensure that research and development at Ford facilities in Michigan will play a key role in further enhancing this new technology.
Ford recently announced an aggressive electrification strategy to bring four new vehicles to market. Ford's electrification strategy involves three types of electrified vehicles – battery electric vehicles, hybrid electric vehicles and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles – to provide consumers with significant fuel economy improvements and reduced CO2 emissions without compromising their driving experience.
Ford's new electrification strategy will deliver a suite of electrified vehicles to market by 2012, including:
* A full battery commercial Transit Connect van-type commercial vehicle in 2010.
* A full battery electric passenger car in 2011.
* Next-generation hybrid vehicles, including a plug-in version by 2012.
The electrification strategy builds on Ford's vision for bringing affordable technology to millions. It is designed to take advantage of rapid advancements in electrified vehicle technology – particularly Lithium-ion batteries – while leveraging the scale of global vehicle platforms to bring the cost of new technology down.
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Ford Motor Company
Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 213,000 employees and about 90 plants worldwide, the company's wholly owned brands include Ford, Lincoln, Mercury and Volvo. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford's products, please visit www.ford.com.