Ford Electrification Plans Include Hybrid Mustang


We’re just three days into 2017, and Ford has already put out what could be the biggest announcement of the year by declaring that it will build a hybrid Mustang by 2020. Ford’s future electrification plans go much deeper than that, but a the promise of a hybrid Mustang will be a divisive issue among performance car fans of every brand.

Indeed, the addition of a hybrid drivetrain to the iconic Mustang will be the first application to a mass-produced sports car from any of the major automotive brands. Sure, there are cars like the McLaren P1 and LaFerrari that utilize complicated hybrid drivetrains derived from Formula 1 technology, but those vehicles also come with seven-figure price tags.

The question becomes, then, what form does a hybrid Mustang take? There are essentially two options; pair it with a small turbocharged engine to offer V8-matching performance, or add it to a V8 model in lieu of a supercharger on, say, a GT500 model. Ford has slowly been inching its way towards a future V8 engines are few and far between, with the 3.5 liter EcoBoost motor now proving more popular than the 5.0 V8 in the popular F-150. Might the Mustang go down the same path?

Ford’s electrication plans go far beyond the Mustang, with a dozen other electrified vehicles in the pipes that include a F-150 Hybrid, a Transit Connect Hybrid, and an all-electric SUV with 300-miles of driving range. Ford plans to invest $700 million into its Flat Rock Assembly Plant, where the Mustang is currently made, to facilitate these electrification plans. This is part of Ford’s promised $4.5 billion electrification plan, with the Mustang Hybrid due out by 2020.

“Our investments and expanding lineup reflect our view that global offerings of electrified vehicles will exceed gasoline-powered vehicles within the next 15 years,” said CEO Mark Fields. It’s particularly interesting that Ford is making this investment despite the election of Donald Trump, who has promised to rollback the gas mileage and emissions standards passed by the Obama administration.

After watching Ford flounder through gas mileage lawsuits and half-assed compliance cars, it looks like the Blue Oval might finally take electrification seriously.

About the Author

A writer and gearhead who loves all things automotive, from hybrids to HEMIs, can be found wrenching or writing- or else, he’s running, because he’s one of those crazy people who gets enjoyment from running insane distances.

  • zn

    A hybrid F-150 makes more sense than perhaps any other vehicle across the entire auto industry. This is a good idea.

    • GregS

      Yes indeed, and let’s hope they don’t bungle this, because if done right it could be a HUGE seller.

  • Kieran Delaney

    A hybrid-mustang is a nice idea, and It’s nice to see any gas-guzzling car get electrified…but as zn said, the F-150 hybrid is far and away the most impactful development.

    Next stop, a fully-electric one!

    • GregS

      I agree that a good hybrid pickup is needed far more than a hybrid Mustang. While I would like to see a fully electric pickup, I’m not sure it is attainable in the near future (5 years). Pickups are heavy and have the aerodynamics of a brick, therefore any kind of decent range of 200+ miles will require a huge battery pack, which will drive up costs substantially.
      I’d be happy (for now) if I could purchase a PHEV pickup with 30 miles of pure electric range. This would allow for commuting on weekdays with no gas use, but still allow longer trips on weekends.

      • Kieran Delaney

        Oh yeah, I agree completely. There is no way a fully-electric pickup (that can be used as one traditionally is) can be sold within the next half a decade at least. Energy density and battery mass needs to be increased and reduced (respectively) before that can happen.

        It’s a nice idea though!

  • JP

    So…Ford is touting electrification by announcing a hybrid Mustang by 2020? Why will it take 3 plus years? Adding an electric motor and small battery could be done now. They are simply making a PR stunt to put off their lack of interest in selling electric cars. The day Tesla shows a Model P (pick-up) on a stage, THAT is the day Ford will get serious about electrification.

    • Jamez

      They did it to my Electric Focus… so why not?

      Perhaps they perceive their Mustang owners as POWRRRR users and perhaps they want to develop a performance hybrid instead of a economical hybrid.

  • Jamez

    I wish they’d stop expanding their vision and focus on a better solution than ICE/PHEV conversion that we’re currently under (don’t get me wrong, I love my electric Focus)

    Develop one BEV skateboard platform that can extend the wheelbase (and capacity) for different models. Become coach builders and farm out the platform for other companies to work on. In addition, develop a large battery Hybrid bed-based Pickup platform for the truck lineup using similar tech.