back to article Ford unveils all-electric Focus for 2012

Ford has formally wheeled its new all-electric Focus out of the garage, and promised to put it onto European forecourts in 2012. The car company said the leccy Focus will charge more quickly than Nissan's rival Leaf and offer better miles-per-litre pricing than GM's Ampera, as the Volt will be called in Europe. Ford Focus …

COMMENTS

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  1. Deadly_NZ
    Pint

    Software by Miccysoft

    So when they stop for no reason, or just catch fire ooppss you forgot to plug your car in to the net for the usual round of updates. Or maybe they will use the same kind of Windows 7 battery controller that has been killing laptop batteries all over the place.

    Ahhhhh a beer to drink while you watch the car burn

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Joke

      Could be worse

      it could be linux based so that some one very technical can make the car more efficient, but the general punter won't even be able to work out how to get it started. It could be OSX based so the car will tell you where it wants you to go. It could be GoogleOS so that your car tells the US government where you went, but 'it doesn't really it is just collecting anonymous data to tailor adverts for you'.

      1. Tigra 07 Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        RE: AC

        You missed iOS taking you where IT wants you to go, patenting how you sit and grip the wheel and then suing you for it.

  2. Rogerborg
    FAIL

    Utter, total, complete unmitigated fail

    Taking your stock heavy steel-and-glass-box and slapping technowank batteries in it is the opposite of smart. Instead, make a new plastic or carbon fibre box that weighs as much as a tart's undies, slap a couple of AAs in there, and you're good to go.

  3. Anomalous Cowturd
    WTF?

    Ooh look, a rev. counter, and an automatic gearbox.

    So just some stock photo's of a normal Focus, with the exhaust pipes Photoshopped out then?

    You'd think they might have made a bit more effort, what with this being publicity and all...

    Don't fall for all the hype. When your current car finally dies, get a small efficient diesel.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Pint

      When your current car finally dies, get a small efficient diesel.

      Well said sir.

    2. Dapprman

      Actually

      If your journeys are sub 5-10 miles each way get a small petrol engine as at that range they are actually more efficient than diesels. it's only once the engine is properly warmed up that diesel engines come in to their own, before that they are very inefficient and dirty. But yes electric cars are a lot of hype with large purchase prices and large environmental footprints.

    3. Mark 65 Silver badge
      FAIL

      80 mile range also

      Like having a suped up milk float. Given the initial cost and insurance and depreciation it'll be an absolute waste of 'kin money.

    4. Matt Bryant Silver badge
      Stop

      RE: Utter, total, complete unmitigated fail

      "....Instead, make a new plastic or carbon fibre box that weighs as much as a tart's undies....." Which would also mean making the resultant vehicle prohibtively expensive to make, and price it well out of the reach of the average consumer, to the point where it becomes just another pointless exercise in enviromasochism. You also fail (literally) to consider that if a coventional petrol/diesel-engined car is given the ultra-lightweight bodywork, etc, then it will then be even more economic and make the leccy car look an even more stupid option. The only way leccy cars are going to get widespread adoption via the commercial manufacturers is if said manufacturers can use their current techniques and technologies, otherwise all you'll end up with is ubersmart failures like the Sinclair C5.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Actually..

        you are completely wrong.

        Diesels are ALWAYS more efficient than petrol engines, about the only time a petrol engine can be said to be more efficient than a diesel is while it is starting, as the starter motor has to be more powerful to turn a diesel over.

        About a second after that it is more efficient all the way.

        My daily commute starts and ends with a 4 mile journey, in the winter my MPG goes down to about 38-45 MPG mostly due to running the engine while de-icing/demisting and it taking longer to warm up. In the summer I typically get between 47-51MPG.

        Not bad for a 2Ltr Turbo-Diesel in a VW Passat Estate.

        I will admit that I mostly avoid the main rush hours (I'm out before and back after) so I don't have to spend to long sitting in traffic, but a similar sized and performing petrol engined car would likely only get 20-25MPG on that run with maybe 28 on a really good day.

        This is the first diesel I have ever owned, and there is no way I would ever buy another petrol engined car again. In the four years I have had this car; the servicing bills have been lower than any car I have ever owned, the car tax is lower, the insurence is lower and the cost of running it is much lower.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    Wrong interior pictures?

    The pictures of the interior must be of a non-leccy Focus, I can't see much point in having a rev-counter in a leccy vehicle.

    Please try harder!

    :)

  5. Steven Knox Silver badge
    Coat

    Naaah...

    "The car contains software from Microsoft ..."

    ....Too easy.

    1. Bilgepipe
      Gates Horns

      I'll do it then...

      7:40am, late for work. "Your battery has downloaded important updates and needs to be restarted. Your battery will not be recharged until these updated have been installed."

      "25 minutes until charging complete. No, 48 minutes. No, 2 hours. No, 5 minutes. " etc.

      "Your glovebox has old, used tissues and a couple of petrol receipts in it - would you like to run the Glovebox Tidy Wizard?" Click no, the message appears again.

      You're right, it is too easy.

  6. Arctic fox
    IT Angle

    Interesting, however......

    ..........BYD (Chinese company) claim that the latest version of their E6 has a range of 300 km. If that is true then Ford (and several other producers) are going to have to extract their opposable digit from where ever they have been keeping it. Do like the temperature controlled battery though, where I live it would be a major plus!

  7. PsYcHoTiC_MaDmAn

    The car contains software from Microsoft....

    will it have the red ring of death feature.......

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Just to be clear, none of these photos are of the electric Focus

    which has a much less busy (and much prettier) nose treatment, along with what looks like a filler flap on the front wing, its ring of status lighting giving away the charging socket hiding beneath

    1. Chemist

      One word

      ....claim !

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Joke

      Except...

      ...in this case death could be literal.

      1. Arctic fox

        @Chemist. re One word.

        You apparently missed the fact that I also wrote "....if that is true.....", hmmm? Should I have used upper case for "IF"?

    3. jonathanb Silver badge

      claim

      What speed do you have to drive at to get this 300km, and how much of it is downhill?

      Also, what is the ratio of battery space to useable passenger and luggage space?

  9. nyelvmark
    WTF?

    How far?

    I presume the 128 km range is measured at night, with the headlights on and the stereo playing, when the outside temperature is -5C and the heater is turned up to max, yes?

  10. Richard Porter
    WTF?

    Why

    does a leccy car need to have a great big aggressive black grille at the front?

  11. Richard Porter
    Coat

    Software by Mictusoft

    So you have to leave it plugged in at home one Tuesday a month for security patches then?

    I wonder if it has Alt, Ctrl and Del keys on the dashboard.

    1. Arctic fox

      It is intended to make sure that ones..........

      ..........ehem (cough, shuffle) masculine self-image is not damaged by driving something so eco-friendly (read: pansy) as a electric car. It is a sort of psychological prosthetic.

    2. Giles Jones Gold badge

      Scary

      Software by Microsoft should not be in a radio controlled model car, never mind a real one.

    3. Giles Jones Gold badge

      Things still get hot

      You still need an air intake for cooling electrical components and air intake for the heater/demist.

    4. Dave Bell

      Waste Heat

      There's always going to be heat generated in the motors and batteries. Even with liquid cooling for the battery, that heat has to be dumped into the air eventually.

      And besides, this is a modification of an existing vehicle design. Don't expect big bodywork changes. The next generation of vehicle might be designed differently.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Joke

    Could be worse...

    ..could be Linux.

    The gearbox won't talk to the engine and there will be 10,000 different interiors, 9,999 of which will look utterly shite.

    1. M Gale

      This would be funny...

      ...if Linux wasn't probably already running in some chip in your car somewhere.

  13. A handle is required
    Thumb Down

    These all electric-powered vehicles are great for the environment!

    </sarcasm>. Unfortunately, the electricity itself doesn't magically appear: It comes from coal plants, nuclear power plants, etc...

  14. Danny 14 Silver badge
    Thumb Down

    indeed

    no word yet on how much a major service will cost (including replacing the batteries). That should shock people more than finding some scrote unplugged the charging lead on you.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    Whats the one thing I want my car to do when I plug it in?

    and whats the one thing that Microsofts involvement means it wont do?

    I get home after a morning out plug it in I want it to charge so its ready for the evening whe I need it next. Microsoft thinks I don't want my car until tomorrow so stops it from charging, until overnight when the leccy is cheap.

    Result = flat car + expensive tow home + waste of time.

    Thanks Microsoft for getting invloved.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Stop

    not buying Ford or Microsoft. The End.

    My father was a Ford man for many years, until he bought an Escort. That did it - no more, ever again.

    See title

  17. Nev Silver badge
    FAIL

    All electric cars in countries...

    ...where +60% of electricity is generated by coal and gas.

    Pointless.

  18. Bo Pedersen
    Thumb Up

    there is a lot of hate for electric vehicles on here

    but I for one will reserve judgement until I have had the chance to test drive one.

    The focus 1.6 Diesel is one of the most economical cars in it's class, so a comparison between the two would be interesting.

    No word on price yet, so who is to say that it will be expensive?

    Likely in the first year of sale it may be, but I can see these things becoming much cheaper in the not too distant future.

    and as for Microsoft doing the software, they have done a pretty good job with windows 7, and as with anything security holes are going to be found, as we tell our clients, the only sure fire way of being completely unhackable is not to connect to the web.

    there that's my tuppence worth :)

  19. Farmer Hackit
    Stop

    All the naysayers and their mislead opinions..

    I for one am really happy that at least some movement is being made in Electric car tech.

    Without the current car manufacturers getting on board, there'll be no options to deal with the dwindling oil supplies, rocketing costs and associated political turmoil until it's much too late..(read expensive)

    The fact that centrally generated power is MUCH more efficient than millions of independent ( and often badly maintained ) Internal combustion engines. ( something along the lines of 80% of a car's engine is used... to move the parts of the engine )

    By the way, Producing petrol is very expensive. It takes a bucket load more energy to find, drill for, protect, pump, ship, refine and transport to your petrol station than most people realise.

    At least electric cars have the benefit of using the best tech available for power generation. Be it Coal, Gas, Wind, Solar, GeoThermal, Tidal, Nuclear Fission or perhaps fusion soon.

    You seriously want to be stuck with needing petrol or diesel?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @Farmer Hackit

      "You seriously want to be stuck with needing petrol or diesel?"

      No, but I don't want to be stuck with having to find somewhere that I can leave my car on charge for 3+ hours either.

      I'm not against electric cars, in fact I will take a serious look at what's available next time I change my car (probably 2012), but this feels like a backwards step.

      It has some funky new battery cooling system to make better use of the batteries, but they've still ended up with a range that's about 2/3rds (or at least no better) than other vehicles either already on the market or coming soon.

      Oh, and you need to do some sums concerning power generation.

      Cars get replaced on much shorter timescales than power stations and infrastructure, it's entirely possible that in less than five years a significant number of new cars bought will be plug-in electric vehicles, but there will be no capacity to charge them or (more likely) the grid will not be able to deliver all the power required.

      It's not as simple as oil=bad, electricity=good.

    2. Irne Barnard

      RE: All the naysayers and their mislead opinions..

      I'm with you on the centralized idea ... up to a point, you're assuming the inefficient, corrupt, BS-riddled government is actually using the most effective power plant instead of the tech which gave them the biggest back-hander.

      And I'm also with you on the extra (hidden) expenses of petroleum ... but then what about the same for other sources? And being stuck with petrol / diesel - don't be surprised if we are, new techs have been extremely thin on the ground: leccies are actually older than ICE's. And in nearly all instances of power plants we're still using the very first industrial engine: a steam locomotive (just improved a bit and called a turbine).

      Hope that getting some form of leccy production vehicle would up the anti on other power source / usage techs as well. Since IMO leccy isn't the be-all-end-all answer, it may be a step in some direction - maybe even the right direction ... but only sufficient test data can confirm that.

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