Ford will be entering the electric vehicle market when the Ford Focus Electric makes its way to dealerships in the coming weeks. The company is taking a bit of a different approach to selling its first mass-produced all-electric vehicle, though. In order to sell the Focus Electric, Ford dealerships must pass a certification process.
A total of 67 dealerships in California, New Jersey and New York have met the following certification requirements:
- Two onsite charging stations need to be installed, including one in the customer area and one in the service area
- Ford dealerships must participate in a Ford Go Green Dealer Onsite Facility Assessment to identify energy and cost saving opportunities with a goal of facilitating energy efficiency, lower operating expenses and carbon footprint reduction
- Ensure that at least one Focus Electric is available at all times for demonstrations and events
- 80 percent of the sales and service staff at each location must meet specific electric vehicle training certification requirements
- Each showroom must have point-of-purchase display materials including digital assets and window signage
David Gutman, field operations manager at Ford, commented on the certification program, “The amount of hard work and resources dealers put into becoming certified really is a testament to how excited they are, how excited customers are and how excited we are about electric vehicles, starting with Focus Electric.”
The Ford Focus Electric has received a 110 MPG equivalent fuel efficiency rating in the city and a combined fuel efficiency of 105 MPGe, 6 MPGe more than the all-electric Nissan Leaf.
Initially, the Focus Electric will be available at select locations, including the 67 certified Ford dealerships, with nationwide availability expected by the end of 2012.