Ford Motor is taking a mindful approach to producing electric and plug-in hybrid automobiles for the Chinese market, pointing out uncertainty about customer interest and government policy, in spite of a rush by autoamkers to delve into the sector.
“You don’t get any rewards for being first to market,” stated Trevor Worthington, Ford’s vice president for product development in Asia Pacific. The difficulty is to provide electrified cars during the “right time”.
Ford previously this month laid out plans to provide by 2025 hybrid or totally electric versions of all designs made in China with its domestic joint venture partner, Chongqing Changan.
Although Ford executives stated the number of such cars are constructed and sold will depend on aspects including government subsidies, regulatory policy when battery-electric cars can match the expense and fast refueling of gasoline cars.
During a conference with reporters before Shanghai Motor Show on Wednesday, Worthington and Mazen Hammoud, the company’s Asia Pacific powertrain director, said battery charging would be a crucial concern.
“Our goal needs to be something on the order of less than half an hour” to provide an 80 percent charge, stated Hammoud. Eventually, “the goal needs to be similar to refueling a gasoline vehicle. We are a long way from that.”
Worthington also stated Ford has a “team of people who meet with the government weekly” to talk about the still developing policies created to promote vehicle electrification.