Ford Hybrid Semi-Solar Vehicle Promises to Charm; Heads for CES

January 7, 2014, By Sanjeev Ramachandran

Ford seems to have gotten innovative about hybrid cars, and it looks like if they are indeed successful, the whole concept surrounding hybrid vehicles are set to change.

Quite rightly, hybrids are ideally to decrease environmental impacts pollution as much as it is for mileage.

Ford plans on deriving the energy the car requires from sunlight, and yes, that makes all the difference.  Isn’t that what hybrid vehicles were trying for the whole time?

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Ford in this case, is focusing on a concept built on the on the C-Max platform called the Solar Energi. Now what is C-Max? It is a compact that is already built with regard to gas mileage in mind. The photovoltaic panels which line the car’s roof can give up to 34 kilometers on pure electric, and 1000 kilometers with electric-assisted gas power.

As of now, we do not know how much the charge time is, which is what really matters. And yes, the whole thing is rather useless if the charging time is a whole day in hot sun! But Ford says the new solar technology allows users to rely more on solar, than gasoline most of the time.

This technology uses sun-tracking technology  in order to adjust Fresnel lens to focus light into the panels’ collectors. The tracking sits over the car roof and can dramatically increase the efficiency of solar collection. But not just enough to charge a pure electric car!

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Ford says that an average driver can make 75 percent of all trips without electricity. The car does come with an option to charge electrically.

The model will be featured at the CES this time, but if one thinks about it, it’s a complete no-no for places like, say Canada!

Also we don’t know yet how the roof would cost or how vulnerable is it to the damage by birds and the like. But if successful, this could give hybrid vehicles a whole new perspective!

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