Ford Focus, Fiesta will get 'punchier' mild hybrid versions for Europe

3 years, 10 months ago - 27 March 2019, Autoblog
Ford Focus, Fiesta will get 'punchier' mild hybrid versions for Europe
They'll feature a belt-driven starter/generator in place of an alternator

Ford says it will introduce mild-hybrid versions of its Fiesta and Focus next year in Europe as part of plans to electrify its entire European lineup. Further, the company says it plans to make more news about its plans for electrified, commercial and sport utility vehicles during an event in Amsterdam on April 2.

Ford promises to unveil new products that illustrate a diverse family of fuel-efficient and fun-to-drive electrified powertrains. They'll start with new 48-volt mild-hybrid versions of the Fiesta and Focus, which will feature a belt-driven integrated starter-generator in place of a standard alternator. It's meant to capture and store energy lost to braking and coasting in the air-cooled battery pack, and it also acts as a motor that integrates with the low-friction, 1.0-liter three-cylinder EcoBoost engine to deliver additional torque during normal driving and acceleration and power other electronics in the vehicle. Ford says the system "helps deliver punchier, more responsive performance, particularly at lower engine speeds." It also helps mitigate turbo lag on the turbocharged engine.

"Our new Fiesta and Focus EcoBoost Hybrid models are examples of Ford's commitment to deliver new, more environmentally sustainable vehicles, sophisticated technologies, and valued services for our customers, and we have many more examples to announce in Amsterdam next week and beyond," Steven Armstrong, Ford's group vice president and president of Europe, said in a statement.

Ford has said it will offer electric or hybrid versions of all its vehicles in Europe, where it has struggled for years to turn a profit, starting with the all-new Focus. In January, the brand revealed a hybrid wagon variant of its refreshed Mondeo, the European version of the Fusion, featuring a 2.0-liter four-cylinder with a 1.4 kWh lithium-ion battery powering an electric motor.

Also planned are mild-hybrid versions of the Transit and Transit Custom vans as well as its Tourneo Custom, an eight- or nine-seat people-mover van that goes on sale later this year.

None of this goodness is bound for the U.S., of course, where we'll have our trucks and SUVs and like 'em. Ford ended production of the U.S. Focus last year and will stop making the Fiesta for Yanks in May.

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