It’s no Tesla Roadster, but to many Americans it is still a dream vehicle. The iconic Ford F150 pickup truck will get a zippy electrical overhaul in Midland, Michigan, where a plug-in hybrid version will join the fleet at Dow Chemical.
Last Spring, Dow’s electric-car battery joint venture Dow Kokam broke ground on a Midland factory and it is those batteries that will power the trucks. Dow says PHEV trucks will make up 5% of the fleet, or somewhere north of 100 vehicles.
For the auto enthusiasts, here are some stats:
The 20 kWh Dow Kokam battery enables delivery of the required vehicle range in addition to speeds of up to 85 mph and 0-60 MPH acceleration in less than 12 seconds. The truck goes 35 miles on one charge, and with the gas assisted battery-powered engine can journey 400 miles without running out of fuel.
Dow is working with Quantum Fuel Systems Technologies to supply the drive trains that will work with the Dow Kokam batteries.
When C&EN covered the groundbreaking of the facility last year, analysts warned that the production of electric-vehicle batteries was already likely to outpace demand. Still, delivery and operations fleets are likely to be the first to find cost savings by going electric (and are more likely to stay in the all-electric range). They can be parked at charging stations, too. So when those first million electric cars finally start roaming the roads, most will look more like the work-a-day F150 than the sexy Tesla.
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