While rollout is limited as of this writing, we were recently fortunate enough to be given a demonstration of the 100% electric compact five-door hatch. In short, we loved what we saw and instantly began making comparisons to other EVs on the market today. And so here are the top 10 things that stood out about the Focus Electric:
- It’s not
uniqueugly like the Nissan Leaf. In fact, the Focus Electric is rather beautiful and elegant.
- Speaking of looks, the 17-inch multi-spoke aluminum wheels look amazing. They’re not the same as the units found on the Focus Titanium and have a more masculine look, in our opinion.
- The standard seat fabric in the Focus EV, made by Unifi and labelled Repreve, is made from 100 percent recycled materials. Specifically, the cloth material is a polyester fiber and the seat cushions use a bio-based polyurethane foam. Best of all? The seats are as don’t sacrifice comfort and are just as pleasant as any other seat we’ve sampled to date!
- Total range is approximately 85 miles (160 km) — enough for most Americans to go to work and back… and still have almost half of the charge remaining.
- The lithium-ion battery pack is heated and cooled, as needed, to ensure optimal performance. This means that extreme weather conditions won’t adversely affect the vehicle’s electric performance.
- The car is approximately 600 pounds (300 kg) heavier than a gasoline-powered Focus. While some may take this is a negative, we interpret it a positive — since the extra heft gives the Focus a more planted feel, especially on the highway. And that’s not to say that the non-electric Focus has any stability problems; it’s just that the extra poundage plays in the Electric’s favor that much more.
- The electric motor makes 134 horsepower and 181 pound-feet of torque. That doesn’t sound like much, until one realizes that 100 percent of that power is available from stand-still. This thing is exhilarating to drive.
- Unlike the Nissan Leaf, Ford estimates that it will take the Focus Electric three to four hours for a full charge. The charging port, located on the fender in front of the driver’s door, shows the status of a charge by illuminating in four quadrants.
- The free MyFord Mobile App lets you monitor and schedule the charging of the Focus Electric, provides charge status updates, shows the location of the vehicle as well as the nearest charging stations and the most efficient route to get there. The app also allows the driver to “precondition” the vehicle to a comfortable temperature while it’s still plugged in, so as not to waste precious energy on heating or cooling the cabin when unplugged. In addition to pre-conditioning, the app also allows you to set a schedule to cool down or heat up the interior. Pretty nifty.
- A $39,200, the price is steep… but it can be lowered with a $7,500 federal income tax credit.
In short, we enjoyed every second with the Focus Electric and can’t wait to get some serious hands-on time with it (soon, hopefully). Ford has been taking orders for the car in the United States since November of 2011, but initial roll-out has been limited to 19 markets. For our neighbors in Canada, The Blue Oval will communicate availability information on its website — Ford.ca — but one has to provide an email address to receive it.
Will you be getting a Focus Electric for yourself? Sound off in the comments.