Ford to increase EV range

Ford Motor Co. said Monday it will increase its battery electric vehicle offerings beyond the 480 km range crossover EV it plans to offer by 2020.

To develop and research EVs, Ford is setting up an internal team named “Team Edison” in a clear nod to the historical rivalry between its namesake and his contemporary, Nicola Tesla. It will be separate from Ford’s other electrification efforts, which include hybrid and plug-in hybrid offerings.

Henry Ford and Thomas Edison.

“We see an inflection point in the major markets toward battery electric vehicles,” Sherif Marakby, Ford’s head of electrification and autonomous vehicles told website Automotive News. “We feel it’s important to have a cross-functional team all the way from defining the strategy plans and implementation to advanced marketing.”

Marakby said Ford is on track to deliver 13 electrified vehicles over the next five years, and has announced seven of those.

He also said the new team will explore partnerships. Ford was rumored to be in talks earlier this year about acquiring Lucid Motors, and in August said it would form a joint venture with a Chinese manufacturer to produce all-electric vehicles for the Chinese market.

“We are open to partnerships, but this team will be responsible to define the strategy,” Marakby said.

He said the team’s goal was to “move fast and think big and really grow the BEV offerings from Ford.”

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