The phrase,'Unsound Transit', was coined by the Wall Street Journal to describe Seattle where,"Light Rail Madness eats billions that could otherwise be devoted to truly efficient transportation technologies." The Puget Sound's traffic congestion is a growing cancer on the region's prosperity. This website, captures news and expert opinion about ways to address the crisis. This is not a blog, but a knowledge base, which collects the best articles and presents them in a searchable format. My goal is to arm residents with knowledge so they can champion fact-based, rather than emotional, solutions.


Monday, March 10, 2008

Ford Motor to Test Plug-in Hybrids on its Utility Vehicles

By: Tom Krisher
AP/Detroit News
July 10, 2007

DETROIT -- Ford Motor Co. and Southern California Edison will team up to test rechargeable hybrid vehicles in an effort to speed up mass production of the new technology.

The utility, which serves 13 million people in 11 central, coastal and Southern California counties outside Los Angeles, will get a Ford plug-in hybrid vehicle by the end of 2007 and as many as 20 in 2009 to test durability, range and impact on the power grid, said Susan M. Cischke, Ford senior vice president for sustainability, environment and safety engineering.

Ford Chief Executive Alan Mulally and other company executives were in California on Monday for the announcement, which Cischke says is a unique partnership between a power provider and an automaker that should help bring plug-in hybrids to market more quickly.

Plug-in hybrids generally have batteries that power an electric motor, with an internal combustion engine for use when the batteries run low. The batteries can be recharged by plugging them into a standard wall outlet.

Southern California Edison will help Ford by placing the cars with consumers and collecting data, Cischke said.

"They have the wire-side knowledge about the grid and all the issues there," she said. "By partnering with these two industries ... we're hoping that it does accelerate the commercialization and certainly drive some of the cost issues down."

Power shortages have been an issue in Southern California Edison's highly populated service area. The company is under a state mandate to build five power plants that would fire up during peak energy use periods. The plants would help avoid projected energy shortages.

Many automakers have plug-in hybrids that are similar to Ford's experimental vehicles, but mass production has been held back by cost and battery technology that limits the vehicles' range. Manufacturers are racing to bring the technology to market as consumers seek alternatives to the internal combustion engine and high gasoline prices.

"We see electricity as itself an alternative fuel in support of transportation," said John Bryson, chairman of Rosemead, Calif.-based Edison International, parent company of Southern California Edison.

The articles are posted solely for educational purposes to raise awareness of transportation issues. I claim no authorship, nor do I profit from this website. Where known, all original authors and/or source publisher have been noted in the post. As this is a knowledge base, rather than a blog, I have reproduced the articles in full to allow for complete reader understanding and allow for comprehensive text searching...see custom google search engine at the top of the page. If you have concerns about the inclusion of a specific article, please email for a speedy resolution.