Ford expects to make major inroads into Portland EV market

The Energi has as much as 600 miles of range on a full tank of gas and fully charged battery.

The Energi has as much as 600 miles of range on a full tank of gas and fully charged battery.

A key Ford executive said Portland is becoming one of the company’s critical electric vehicle markets.

Chad D’Arcy, Ford’s Focus electric marketing manager, said the region’s commitment to electric vehicles and hybrids will make it an industry hotspot over the next several years. D’Arcy was in town for the Drive Revolution event, which showcased electric vehicles and hybrids at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry last weekend.

“We really wanted to be part of this event,” said D’Arcy. “Portland is an important city within the electric vehicle industry. It was one of our nine initial launch markets, and we really wanted to be a part of it.”

As far as comparable markets, “Portland’s doing very well: California is the dominant market for EVs at this point, but the Pacific Northwest, that is, Oregon and Washington, are key markets.”

Ford’s alternative fuel vehicle lineup includes the Focus Electric, which is EPA-certified at more than 100 miles per gallon equivalent, and the C-Max Energi, a plug-in hybrid electric model. The Energi can offer 620 miles of range on a single tank of gas and a fully charged battery.

Ford said the hybrids can save business customers as much as 45 percent in operational costs. It expects to soon double its hybrid vehicle production.

Oregon counts about 2,000 electric vehicles on the road. Ford displayed its newest offerings at the Portland International Auto Show in February.

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