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Ford goes green with all-electric Focus

Motor giant outlines its plans for a greener future at North American International Auto Show


The Focus is part of a three-vehicle strategy, all based on the same basic chassis and technology. The other two cars are both C-Max models, one is a traditional Hybrid (like the Prius) which charges its battery using a petrol engine, while the Plug-in Hybrid adds the capability to be charged from a wall socket. This range, Ford says, gives consumers a choice of sustainably-powered vehicles depending on their needs. It’s a persuasive argument too, as many car buyers will balk at the idea of buying a car with a limited 100 mile range.

MyFord Touch 1

Ford also feels that its interface design is superior to that of its competitors, and here it’s hard to argue. Paul Mascarenas, Ford’s Chief Technical Officer, talked us through MyFord Touch – a capacitative touch screen display which lets you control the charging and check the battery level. This latest version of Ford’s in-car interface, on which it worked with Microsoft, also controls more traditional functions such as GPS and air-con.

Ford Touch 2

Before the car’s release, their will also be a MyFord Mobile app for iPhone and Android smartphones. This will let owners find charging points nearby, and then check up on their car’s charging status from their phones, or any internet connection. This control extends to other functions, so you could heat up your car before getting in on a cold morning, or transfer planned journey’s from your PC to the in-car GPS system.

Another first is the integration of the Pandora internet radio service. You’ll be able to stream internet radio from a smartphone via Bluetooth to the car’s stereo system, and be able to control playback via voice-activated commands.

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