With both the Chevy Bolt and Tesla Model 3 set to arrive in 2017,
Ford is finally getting ready to unveil its own electric vehicle packing a 200-mile range. UPDATE: Ford says the report by Automobile is not accurate.
After publishing this report Ford has issued the following statement: "We do not comment on speculation but can confirm these reports are not accurate."
According to a very fact-light report by Automobile, Ford's EV is set to debut later this year. There's no word on when, but with Geneva in progress and the New York auto show just a month away, an unveiling at the LA auto show in EV-friendly California this November is a safer bet.
Based on the "200-plus-mile" range Automobile is citing, this likely isn't a re-do of the Focus Electric. To hit that range target, Ford would need a dedicated EV architecture to house the batteries, either a T-like arrangement similar to the Volt/Bolt or a flat slab of batteries spanning the floor, ala the Tesla Model S.
Beyond creating a dedicated platform, the next obvious question is who Ford will pick as a battery supplier. Compact Power, Inc. provided the cells for the Focus Electric. It's a subsidiary of LG Chem, which is producing the lithium-ion packs for the Chevrolet Volt, previously signed an agreement with Hyundai, and has a manufacturing facility in Holland, Michigan. Although that plant has had some, well, issues in the past.
Regardless, for all of Ford's talk of evolving the company, a competitive EV has to be in the cards as we're moving beyond the bandaid approach of slapping a battery in the trunk of an existing car and calling it done.