It is no secret that the cost of advanced lithium-ion batteries are the main drivers behind the high cost of electric vehicles. Even so, most companies are loathe to discuss specifics when it comes to the cost of their batteries. While we’ve been able to get a general idea of the costs, most companies keep battery costs close to the chest.
But Alan Mulally, the man responsible for turning around Ford Motor Company, recently revealed the cost of battery pack found in the Focus Electric. Mulally quotes the price as between “$12,000 and $15,000” per battery pack. Is it any wonder that the Focus Electric costs $40,000 off the dealership lot?
That is up to $15,000 on top of the $22,000 or so that the Focus compact would normally cost rather well-equipped. That works out to a cost of up to $650 per kWh that Ford pays, which is still more than twice the “competitive” level of $200 per kWh that many analysts and companies are shooting for. Even so though, Ford has been able to eek out impressive ratings of 76 miles per charge and a combined MPGe of 105.
Despite reports that battery prices have come down 30% since 2009, we may still be a decade or more away from truly affordable and price-competitive electric vehicles. Ford is keeping marketing of the Focus Electric to a minimum for now, selling it as a special order vehicle only.
It doesn’t mean they don’t have faith in their product, but rather it is an honest look at the nascent EV market. After watching the struggles of both Nissan and GM to get their EV’s sold, Ford is obviously taking a step back and proceeding slowly.
Is Ford’s approach to EV’s better than Nissan and GM? Or are they dooming the Focus Electric right out of the gate?
Source: Wall St. Journal