Posts Tagged ‘Hybrids


Ford Experiments With In-Car Sensors To Predict Driver Behavior, Cut Stress

DEARBORN, Michigan — Ford predicts that in-car sensors will be the next big thing in vehicles.

Biometric sensors will measure the stress level of the driver and help to personalize driver-assist technologies, the automaker said.

The 2013 Ford Fusion previews the future, with 74 sensors that “can monitor the perimeter around the car and see into places that are not readily visible from the driver’s seat,” Ford said.

“Fusion features an unprecedented level of sensors for its driver-assist technologies,” said Paul Mascarenas, Ford’s chief technical officer, in a statement.

Ford said it is researching the use of real-time sensor data — both radar and camera-based — that can help to evaluate external factors affecting driver attention, such as traffic congestion. The real-time sensor data can cut potential distractions, such as an incoming phone call.

Ford researchers are also looking at ways to predict driver behavior to “help optimize and configure vehicle controls for improved performance such as better energy management,” the automaker said.

The automaker is also experimenting with “advanced machine learning.” This technology is previewed in EV+, a feature found in the 2013 Ford Fusion and C-Max Energi plug-in hybrids. It “learns” typical locations of charging and then “automatically maximizes electric-only driving mode when nearing those locations,” the automaker noted.


Ford and Toyota to Collaborate on Light Truck Hybrids News at AutoTalk

Ford Motor Company and Toyota Motor Corporation will be joining forces in the development of hybrid technology for light trucks and SUVs. The two manufacturers will also be co-developing advanced telematics and other on-board Internet services.

The announcement comes as corporate fuel-economy requirements are on the verge of doubling to an average of 54.5 mpg by 2025. The Obama administration’s Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) proposal will force automakers to revamp their line-ups with lighter, more fuel efficient models such as hybrids. Under the new policy, cars produced between the 2016 and 2025 model years will require a 5 percent increase in fuel economy. Full sized pick-ups produced from 2016 through 2019 will be exempt from this standard. After 2019, full sized pick-ups will have to meet a standard yet to be determined.

Automakers have struggled in the past to meet fuel economy standards for full sized trucks. Ford and Toyota’s collaboration is hoped to help ease these troubles while maintaining consumers’ demands.

Ford and Toyota will sign an official agreement next year and plan to release new hybrid systems on rear-wheel drive SUVs and light weight trucks later this decade.


Quiet hybrids: An end to their sounds of silence?


WASHINGTON — The age of the silent hybrid may be coming to an end.

Gas-electric hybrids, propelled by electric motors at low speeds, are well-known for their quiet ride and great mileage. But their silence isn’t always golden.

Some researchers and safety groups say that quiet operation — “hybrid creep” — can pose risks for unsuspecting pedestrians and the blind, who use sound cues.

Advocates for the blind have sought the addition of artificial noises in hybrids for several years, concerned that the expected sales growth of hybrids could lead to more pedestrian fatalities and injuries. Hybrids account for about 2 percent of new car sales each year but auto companies are expected to boost production in advance of tougher fuel efficiency standards this decade.

“This is an example of too much of a good thing,” said John Pare, executive director for strategic initiatives with the National Federation of the Blind. “Cars got quieter, that was good. Suddenly they got to be so quiet that it added an element of danger.”

Continue reading ‘Quiet hybrids: An end to their sounds of silence?’


Bloomberg survey says Americans turning away from Toyota, liking Ford

source: autoblog

For the past generation or so Toyota has been synonymous with two things: Selling more passenger cars than anybody else (Camry, Corolla) and quality. Sure, there have been a few other themes associated with ToMoCo (green hybrids, not ready for prime-time full-size trucks), but for the most part, ubiquitousness and reliability have been the big selling points. Then came a particularly nasty case of sudden acceleration.

Bloomberg reports that four out of 10 Americans say they would “definitely not buy a Toyota.” Compounding matters is another part of the Bloomberg survey that reveals a significant 36% of Americans have a negative view of Toyota. Ouch. Potentially worse is that less than half (49%) of those surveyed have a favorable view of Toyota.

Contrast those results to what Bloomberg learned about Ford. An overwhelming 77% of consumers have a favorable opinion of the house that Henry built. That’s seven percent more favorable than second-place Honda. The survey found that many people are so amped up on the Blue Oval because unlike fellow American companies General Motors and Chrysler, Ford avoided taking Federal bailout money. That’s probably part of the good will, but we think it runs a bit deeper than that.

Ford is making good products. With the exception of the soon-to-be-replaced Focus, every vehicle they make is a class leader. There’s no compelling reason to choose a Camry or Accord over a Fusion, and the Fusion Hybrid just might be the best gas/electric vehicle on the market. The Flex is a true segment buster, and perhaps the most comfortable under several hundred thousand dollar way to move four adults around. The F-150 is as good as ever. Would you choose a Yaris over a Fiesta? There’s also Ford’s faster product cycles (think new 2011 Mustangs) and market-leading technology like Sync. Put it like this: these survey results don’t surprise us an iota.


Ford delivers first plug-in hybrid to DOE

June 11, 2008

Ford delivers first plug-in hybrid to DOE

Washington, D.C. – The Ford Motor Company has delivered its first-ever, flexible fuel-capable plug-in hybrid SUV to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). The Ford Escape Plug-In Hybrid, which runs on gasoline or E85, is part of a demonstration fleet Ford is developing in a partnership with Southern California Edison and the Electric Power Research Institute. Similar vehicles are already undergoing advance testing in California.

“Plug-in hybrid technology holds great promise to reduce the nation’s dependence on petroleum and reduce CO2 emissions related to climate change, both significant issues for America,” said Mark Fields, President of the Americas, Ford Motor Company. “As a leader in both hybrid and flexible fuel technology, Ford is well positioned to bring the two together in a plug-in vehicle.”

The vehicle is equipped with a 10 kilowatt advanced lithium ion energy battery that stores enough electric energy to drive up to 30 miles (48 km) at speeds of up to 40 mph (64 km/h). When fueled by E85 ethanol, which has a lower energy content than gasoline, fuel economy can reach up to 88 mpg (2.6 L/100 km) in urban driving and up to 50 mpg (4.7 L/100 km) on the highway. Based on current estimates, the vehicle would emit 60 per cent less CO2 than a conventional gasoline-powered vehicle, and could reach 90 per cent reduction if cellulosic ethanol is used in place of gasoline.

The vehicle is one of twenty demonstration plug-in hybrids that Ford is building as part of a collaboration with Southern California Edison and the Electric Power Research Institute to accelerate the commercialization of plug-in hybrids.



Ford has always been a brand name that signifies excellence, innovation, dedication and is really an All-American brand name. One of the biggest players in the motor industry, Ford has never failed to provide the American population and the world, cutting edge vehicles that caters to every needs.

With the growing environmental concerns not just in USA, Ford has joined the Hybrid bandwagon and came up with their own Hybrid card. It is popularly known that Americans love the room and power that SUV’s provide, and with the hybrid sedan crowding with Japanese manufactured hybrid cars, Ford decided to infuse their hybrid technology with a vehicle they know many Americans would embrace, a Hybrid SUV (Sports Utility Vehicle) in the form of the Ford Escape Hybrid.

The Ford Escape Hybrid was first introduced in 2004 and is a gas electric powered compact SUV. Consumer demand became strong for the Ford Escape Hybrid prompting Ford to produce more of the gas saving SUV.

To avoid any legal issues, Ford went into an agreement with Toyota to use some of the patented hybrid technology previously used in the very successful Toyota Prius. By 2006, The Hybrid system utilized by Ford is acknowledged as one of the more advanced technology being offered. The Ford Escape Hybrid is now available as a full hybrid motor vehicle. It makes use of different power combinations that adjusts to the driving style to conserve more power and achieve maximum potential and efficiency in performance. Compared to the conventional gas fed Ford escape, they provide the same performance, comfort with less fuel consumption.

Aside from the Ford escape Hybrid, Ford has also released another Hybrid SUV under one of their car brand names, Mercury. The Mercury mariner has many similarities with the Ford Escape Hybrid and its soon to be released sibling the Mazda Tribute Hybrid. Ford plans to further develop their SUV hybrid lineup concentrating on this segment but is not dismissing the hybrid sedan segment and have plans to introduce hybrid sedans in the future.

Fords research and design table are now over flowing with plans to further boost awareness and concern with environmental issues and have dedicated to provide more alternative powered vehicles as they see that this is the future. This is because Hybrid cars offer a lot of advantages and benefits that does not only cater to environmental issues but as to the pockets of the consumers as well.

With a Ford hybrid car, you will soon notice that you will be doing less pit stops for refueling as you can squeeze out more miles to a gallon. With the ever escalating prices of fuel, this is a warmly welcomed change. You will also notice the significant lowering of the sounds the engine makes. Plus, some states offer tax rebates when purchasing hybrid vehicles, which translates to more savings in the bank.

Ford has now over a hundred patents pending to further develop their Hybrid technology. All of them would be able to make our lives better. With Ford Hybrid vehicles, you get the same comfort, same performance and same space but with less gas emissions and less gas spending. You get true value for your money and your helping our environment at the same time.

News and Events for the Ford or Lincoln owner and enthusiast.

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