Now we need volume in the market for Electric cars, we need new models and new applications. Ford's announcement is very important news for lithium batteries wide spread market penetration, it will compete directly with Renault Electric White Van unveiled in Frankfurt and will affect the timing of Lithium battery's cost developments:
"Our main take from U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu Video :"Price of Lithium batteries is in access of 1000 USD/kWh at the moment, with mass production it will drop to 300-400 USD/kWh ( S. GM is aiming now for 450 USD/kWH in a near term) and with recent technological advance we can talk about 100 USD/kWh as possibility." As we have wrote before, lithium battery price of USD 25o per kWh will make production of Electric Cars cheaper than a comparable CV - you do not need automatic transmission as part of your power drive."
Ford was late to the EV market place with GM Volt taking the headlines, but now they are moving into right direction: it is lithium and it is White. Important thing will be to move with electric version in Taxi urban market as well. Next step will be to target commecial fleets and Ford can even gain some market share here out of GM Volt and Nissan. It is a very encouraging news for Lithium and REE demand side.
The New York Times:
February 9, 2010, 1:17 pm — Updated: 1:17 pm -->
By STEPHEN WILLIAMS
2011 Ford Transit Connect Electric.
Ford unveiled an electric version of its Transit Connect work van ahead of the Chicago Auto Show, which opens to the press on Wednesday.
The 2011 Transit Connect Electric, which is expected to appear in fleets later this year, will offer a range of 80 miles per charge and a top speed of 75 miles per hour. The van is equipped with a 28 kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack that recharges with a 240-volt outlet in six to eight hours. The Transit Connect Electric is also 120 volt compatible (though charge time is likely to be considerably longer). Ford says the battery pack should last the life of the vehicle.
“Transit Connect Electric exemplifies how we are leveraging our relationships as well as our hybrid and advanced powertrain programs to bring energy-efficient technologies from the laboratory to the street,” Derrick Kuzak, Ford’s group vice president of global product development, said in a news release.
The Transit Connect Electric was developed with Azure Dynamics, an electric-drive technology company in Oak Park, Mich., which will build the powertrain. Johnson Controls-Saft is supplying the lithium-ion battery cells and battery packs.
2011 Ford Transit Connect Taxi.
Another vehicle that Ford unveiled ahead of the Chicago show was its Transit Connect Taxi, which will also go on sale later this year.
Ford says the taxi edition (and the base model Transit Connect) will come with a choice of three engines. In addition to a 2-liter 4-cylinder engine, there will be versions that run on compressed natural gas and propane.
Indeed, the Transit Connect Taxi to be shown in Chicago has the words “Compressed Natural Gas” printed prominently on the door. The vehicle is painted yellow and even features a check pattern on the back half — perhaps portending a future in New York City?
The Taxi might be a no-brainer to replace the aging Crown Victorias now carrying passengers in New York. While it’s not a stretched version, the Taxi does offer an additional three inches of rear legroom over the conventional truck and features an integrated fare-tracking system, an interactive eight-inch L.C.D. display in the back that can show routes and restaurant reviews."