Ford is the only automaker to offer a hybrid version of a car at the exact same price as the non-hybrid version. The “hybrid premium” is usually so high that finding any financial savings from less fuel usage often takes five years or more. Ford decided hey, what the hell, lets sell the MKZ Hybrid for the same price, and sales have beaten even Ford’s estimates. The Blue Oval thought hybrid sales would account for, at most, 15% of MKZ sales. Instead, sales of the hybrid have tracked in the 22-23 percent range through February, and should continue through March. Overall Lincoln sales are in a slump, with the MKZ hybrid being one of the only bright spots. Too bad Ford isn’t making any extra money on them.
With both cars starting at $35,455, buying the hybrid version will actually result in an immediate fuel savings. Ford managed to sell over 760 MKZ Hybrids through February, compared to 469 units of the comparable Lexus HS 250h sedan. Personally, I still find Lincoln’s lineup a little bland and boring (something I usually say about Toyota!) but the MKZ Hybrid makes a tempting case for those looking to get a little luxury with their fuel efficiency.
Can Ford keep this hybrid momentum up through 2011 as gas prices inch ever higher? We’ll see.
Source: Automotive News
Chris DeMorro is a writer and gearhead who loves all things automotive, from hybrids to HEMIs. You can read about his slow descent into madness at Sublime Burnout or follow his non-nonsensical ramblings on Twitter @harshcougar.