Auto Electronics

Ford selects Johnson Controls-Saft to supply PHEV batteries

Ford selected Johnson Controls-Saft to design and manufacture the lithium-ion battery system for Ford 's first series production plug-in hybrid electric vehicle, which will be introduced in 2012.

The five-year supply agreement includes delivery of battery packs for committed production in 2012 with a target of 5,000 units per year, with the potential to ramp up to meet customer demand. The battery will power the car on full electric for 40 miles and can be recharged through a standard 120 V electrical outlet.

The battery packs, including cells, mechanical, electrical, electronic and thermal components, will be assembled in the United States. Initially, the cells will be produced at the Johnson Controls-Saft production facility in Nersac, France. Johnson Controls-Saft will also use its 58,000 square-foot battery research and development facility in Milwaukee, where the joint venture does cell design, system engineering, testing and integration.

"Today, nearly all batteries for hybrid electric vehicles are manufactured offshore,” said Alex Molinaroli, president of Johnson Controls Power Solutions. “As the United States works to build a manufacturing infrastructure and supply base for hybrid and electric vehicles, this contract signals significant progress for our industry here."

Johnson Controls-Saft is also partnering with Ford, the Electric Power Research Institute, Southern California-Edison, and utility companies in seven other states, on a 20-vehicle test fleet of Ford Escape PHEVs as part of a complete vehicle, home and grid energy system. Data from the demonstration fleet will be used to support the PHEV production program.

The new partners include New York Power Authority; Consolidated Edison of New York; American Electric Power of Columbus, Ohio; Alabama Power of Birmingham, AL, and its parent, Atlanta-based Southern Company; Progress Energy of Raleigh, NC DTE Energy of Detroit; National Grid of Waltham, MA, and the New York State Energy and Research Development Authority.

In addition to the PHEV planned for 2012, Ford plans to bring a full battery electric vehicle (BEV) van for commercial use to market in 2010, and a small BEV sedan developed jointly with Magna International by 2011.

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