Ford shows off its hybrids and plug-ins at NAIAS - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

Ford shows off its hybrids and plug-ins at NAIAS

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(01/17/13) - You'll get a charge out of the Ford display at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. The automaker has five gas-electric hybrid models to see.

Ford wants to surpass Toyota in the number of hybrids on the road.

Engineers, technicians and others at Ford have been busy the past few months. The company recently introduced two versions of a five-passenger crossover.

"C-MAX is Ford's first dedicated hybrid nameplate and the C-MAX Energi is Ford's first plug-in hybrid vehicle," a Ford spokesman said.

The Energi can travel 20 miles on battery power alone. Then a two liter gasoline-powered engine kicks in.

"It can go 620 miles on a single tank of gasoline," the spokesman said.

The C-MAX plug-in hybrid sells for about $38,000 before a tax credit. If that's a little bit too much money for you, the regular C-MAX hybrid sells for about $5,000 less.

Ford also offers a plug-in version of the Focus and Fusion. The Dearborn-based automaker plans to triple electric vehicle production capacity in 2013.

"Plug-in technology is that next step to delivering better fuel economy for customers and of course a better and cleaner environment," the spokesman said.

The EPA estimates that driving a C-MAX plug-in saves almost $7,000 in fuel costs over the course of five years, compared to the average new vehicle. Ford has developed a 240-volt recharger to power up the lithium-ion batteries at home in two and a half hours. Ford believes that even though gas prices have stabilized somewhat, customers will consider a hybrid or a plug-in.

"And ultimately they're trying to find technology that's going to give them some better return in their pocketbook," the spokesman said.

The C-MAX is built at Ford's Michigan Assembly Plant in Wayne.

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