Want to be one of the first to pilot an electric-powered Ford Focus prototype? Unless you happen to be a guest of honor on the Jay Leno Show, your best bet is to live in London.
Ford announced today it would loan 20 Focus BEV prototypes to consumers living in the London borough of Hilingdon. Such a program will allow the automaker to expose consumers to electric vehicles while also testing the performance of the car and charging system in real-world scenarios. A similar program was established by BMW for the electric-powered Mini E, but at three months in length, Ford’s program is considerably shorter.
Ford has already committed to building an electrified version of the next-generation Focus for both Europe and North America. Although the final design is still being hashed out by engineers, this particular prototype is driven by a permanent magnet motor, powered by lithium-ion batteries, and has a top speed of 85 mph. The battery pack takes approximately 6-8 hours to recharge on a 230-volt supply, and provides the car with a 75-mile range.