Ford charges electric, hybrid strategy

BOSTON–Ford Motor expects to manufacture as many as 2 million all-electric and gas-electric vehicles in the next 10 years, betting that rising oil prices and consumer interest will sustain a long-term transition to new technologies.

The company has set a goal of making 10 percent to 25 percent of its fleet “electrified” by 2020, which represents somewhere between 800,000 and 2 million cars, said Nancy Gioia at a media event here on Wednesday. Ford announced on Wednesday that Gioia will hold a newly created position of director of global electrification, which covers hybrids, plug-in hybrids, and battery-electric vehicles.

Plug-in electric vehicles promise to offer a much lower cost-per-mile than gasoline cars and deliver substantial environmental benefits. But in the near term, hybrids will likely represent the largest volume in the mix of technologies, said Gioia at the event.

“We’ve finally demonstrated the technology, the life, the durability, the safety (of hybrids)–all of that has reached a comfort zone to make it viable. Now it’s going to be affordability that will drive mass market adoption,” she said.

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