Ford Partners With Edison International

By: Anthony Fontanelle

Fuel efficient vehicles are in demand these days and car manufacturers like Ford Motor Co. are scrambling to provide their customers with what they are looking for. Recently, the Dearborn, Michigan-based automaker announced together with Southern California Edison that they will be partnering to clear the way for the future of future plug-in electric cars.

According to reports, Ford's Chief Executive Officer Alan Mulally will be meeting with Edison International's Chief Executive Officer John Bryson. The meeting is scheduled to take place at Edison International's head office in Rosemead, California. The meeting was announced by both companies.

The head of the two companies will announce a joint venture that would mark the first time that an automaker and a major utility company will be working together in the development of plug-in hybrid technology. This tie-up between the two companies is seen as a huge step forward in the fight against the increasing threat of global warming.

Information is scant following the announcement by the two companies. But experts in the auto industry are expecting that the two companies will be developing a plug-in hybrid vehicle. Such vehicles have two-fold importance. First, the use of hybrid vehicles, especially on with a plug-in capability reduces the amount of petroleum fuel consumed. The second is that since less petroleum fuel are burned; greenhouse gas emission will also be reduced.

It is only fitting that the meeting should take place in the state of California. The state has one of the toughest emission regulations all over the world. Environmentalist from the said state are also outspoken about their support for the production of environment friendly vehicles. Through the years, they have lobbied for regulations which will force carmakers to produce more green cars.

The sentiment of many concerned citizens was given voice by Sherry Boschert, an advocate for the promotion of plug-in vehicles saying: "I think they're all realizing that the handwriting is on the wall."

Southern California Edison supplies power to more than 13 million people around the Los Angeles area. The company, like environmentalists has been calling for the development and production of electric vehicles. The company is also lobbying for the government to grant incentives to carmakers involved in the development of advanced green cars.

According to the company, they can generate enough power to supply millions of plug-in hybrid cars if they are recharged during the night when the demand for power is low.

Aside from providing power to vehicles, the process can be reversed according to some researches made recently. This means that if Ford comes out with a plug-in hybrid vehicle with all the trappings including a for even less greenhouse gas emission, the vehicle can provide power back to the grid. During peak hours when power demand is high, a plug-in hybrid vehicle can be used to supply power to a household.

Ford is set to continue its dedication to developing green vehicles with this collaboration with Edison. It can be remembered that FoMoCo became the first American automaker to mass produce a hybrid vehicle in the form of the Escape Hybrid. The said hybrid version of the compact SUV was introduced in the market by FoMoCo in 2004.

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