Ford adds solar panels to electric car package

Ford and SunPower team up to provide a high-efficiency rooftop solar system that will provide Focus Electric owners enough renewable energy production to offset the energy used for charging.

Ford and SunPower are teaming up to bring solar panels to buyers of Ford electronic vehicles. The solar panel will charge things other than the cars but the idea is to offset the power needed to charge the cars each night.

From the press release:

  • “Ford and SunPower  team up to provide a high-efficiency rooftop solar system that will provide Focus Electric owners enough renewable energy production to offset the energy used for charging.
  • The 2.5 kilowatt SunPower system will produce an estimated 3,000 kilowatt hours of electricity annually. SunPower systems are backed by a 25-year warranty.
  • Ford’s aggressive electrification strategy includes the launch of five electrified vehicles in North America by 2012 and Europe by 2013. The new Focus Electric is a zero-emissions, gasoline-free version of Ford’s popular global Focus model.

“Under the ‘Drive Green for Life’ program, Focus Electric owners can reduce their total cost of ownership by generating enough energy from their high efficiency SunPower rooftop solar system to offset the electricity required to charge the vehicle at night,” said Mike Tinskey, Ford director of Global Vehicle Electrification and Infrastructure. “It’s an eco-friendly solution that perfectly complements our plug-in products and other green initiatives.”

SunPower CEO Tom Werner

“SunPower’s innovative partnership with Ford is a win-win for customers, providing a comprehensive sustainability program,” said Tom Werner, SunPower president and CEO. “By taking advantage of this program, Focus Electric customers can receive the added benefit of installing a SunPower solar system, the highest-efficiency, most reliable on the market today, generating the electricity needed to charge their vehicles.”

From Techcrunch:

“At least Ford and SunPower are targeting the appropriate demographic. The option should appeal to environmentalists who want to buy an electric car, but don’t want to  feel guilty about consuming all the extra electricity needed to charge it. After all, it’s not really that “green” to drive electric when you’re charging your car using fossil fuels.”

About Daniel Davenport

Daniel is a digital media executive with internet and broadcast experience. Daniel is currently the executive strategy director at THINK Interactive.

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