Ford Receives Michigan Tax Credits for Future Electric Vehicles, Battery Development

By dancurranjr On February 24th, 2009

Ford Motor Company received a $55 million incentive from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) for its work in advanced battery and electrical vehicle development. Ford will receive refundable tax credits through the new Michigan Advanced Battery Credits initiative, announced today by Governor Jennifer Granholm.

The first of its kind in the country, the law provides refundable tax credits to encourage companies to invest in electric vehicle engineering and advanced automotive battery research in Michigan.

“Ford appreciates Michigan’s proactive positioning in support of these advanced technologies, which we believe are at the heart of a new generation of vehicles,” said Curt Magleby, director, Government Affairs. “Incentives to help concentrate research and engineering related to electric vehicles in Michigan will help position the state to become a leader in this emerging technology.”

Approved by the Michigan Economic Growth Authority, the incentive will be used to accelerate Ford’s plans to produce next-generation hybrids, plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and battery electric vehicles.

“These promising technologies give us the opportunity to transform our transportation and energy future,” said Nancy Gioia, director, Sustainable Mobility Technologies and Hybrid Vehicle Programs. “Government support is essential to achieving the potential for electrified vehicles in the future. Michigan’s groundbreaking program accelerates our ability to expand and focus our engineering and research efforts here.”

Ford’s southeast Michigan operations already are home to some of the most advanced automotive research, technology and engineering development facilities in the world. This incentive will help ensure that research and development at Ford facilities in Michigan will play a key role in further enhancing this new technology.

Ford recently announced an aggressive electrification strategy to bring four new vehicles to market. Ford’s electrification strategy involves three types of electrified vehicles – battery electric vehicles, hybrid electric vehicles and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles – to provide consumers with significant fuel economy improvements and reduced CO2 emissions without compromising their driving experience.

Ford’s new electrification strategy will deliver a suite of electrified vehicles to market by 2012, including:

  • A full battery commercial Transit Connect van-type commercial vehicle in
  • A full battery electric passenger car in 2011.
  • Next-generation hybrid vehicles, including a plug-in version by 2012.

The electrification strategy builds on Ford’s vision for bringing affordable technology to millions. It is designed to take advantage of rapid advancements in electrified vehicle technology – particularly Lithium-ion batteries – while leveraging the scale of global vehicle platforms to bring the cost of new technology down.

Source: MCad Cafe

Ford Receives $10 Million Hybrid Grant

By dancurranjr On October 8th, 2008

Money continues to be poured into the development of green cars stateside as the US Department of Energy has awarded the Ford Motor Company a $10 million grant for research, development and demonstration of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs).

In an effort to claw back ground on Asian manufacturers that have stolen a march on American carmakers in the green car race, Ford has received the grant to develop a fleet of 20 PHEVs – the total cost of the project is $20 million, so the Government is effectively funding 50 per cent of the program.

Ford, which has suffered significant sales falls during 2008, has already made tentative steps into the green car market having delivered its first flexible-fuel capable plug-in hybrid electric SUV to the Department of Energy in June. The vehicle was a plug-in version of the Ford Escape Hybrid, which was capable of running on both petroleum and E85. Now vehicle testing is under way in California, Michigan and Washington, DC.

The Ford Escape Hybrid is already established in the US car market, and the PHEV version will be equipped with a 10kWh advanced lithium-ion battery that stores enough energy to drive up to 30 miles at top speeds of 40mph.

It will work alongside a four-cylinder engine and is expected to produce emissions 60 per cent below those of a conventional petroleum powered vehicle. According to Ford the reduction could even reach 90 per cent if cellulosic ethanol is used instead of petrol.

Source: Green Car Website

Johnson Controls-Saft Wins U.S. Grant To Research Plug-In Hybrids (PHEV)

By dancurranjr On August 13th, 2008

Johnson Controls-Saft will research the commercial viability of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles under an $8.2 million federal grant announced Tuesday.

The grant will be used on research beyond the battery itself as the Glendale-based hybrid joint venture works to develop a battery that can be suitable for mass production of plug-in hybrids, called PHEVs.

“We are working on the development of the complete PHEV system, which includes high-energy capacity cells, battery management electronics, control software and an efficient thermal management system, all optimally packaged for safety and efficient integration into the vehicle,” said Mary Ann Wright, who leads the Johnson Controls-Saft joint venture and is vice president and general manager for the Johnson Controls hybrid battery business.

This contract aims to research improvements to battery designs to enable plug-in hybrid cars to drive either up to 10 miles or up to 40 miles on the electric battery only, before the gasoline internal combustion engine kicks in.

The grant, funded by the U.S. Energy Department, was announced by the Advanced Battery Consortium, a joint government-auto industry program whose members include Chrysler LLC, Ford Motor Co. and General Motors Corp. In 2006, Johnson Controls-Saft was awarded a similar contract focused on lithium-ion battery systems for hybrid electric vehicles. Johnson Controls-Saft is a joint venture that has brought together Johnson Controls Inc. — the world’s leading supplier of automotive batteries — with Saft, an advanced energy storage solutions provider.

Wright testified last year that the U.S. government needs to step up its financial support for the U.S. auto industry to help make mass production plug-in hybrid vehicles a reality. She repeated that call at an industry conference in Michigan Tuesday, according to Bloomberg News.

“There is a sort of strange flaw in the thinking at the federal level that encourages development but not U.S. production of these technologies,” said K.G. Duleep, managing director of Arlington, Va.-based Energy and Environmental Analysis, a research group that consults automakers and the government on advanced vehicle technologies. “The feds haven’t paid attention to the manufacturing side.”

The department is seeking $52.9 million to support development and commercialization of plug-in hybrids and advanced lithium-ion batteries in fiscal 2009, up from $41.2 million in fiscal 2008 and just $1.4 million in fiscal 2006, spokeswoman Jennifer Scoggins said.

The agency supports plug-in hybrids, hydrogen-fueled cars, biofuels and other advanced technologies, Scoggins said.

“GM, Ford and Chrysler aren’t competing against each other, they’re competing against the world,” Wright said. “We have to look at it as national survival. Nobody is going to do this on their own.

Source: JS Online