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Ford Focus EV Experience

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danholl · · 2 years ago

I received my Focus EV yesterday. Now that the real Focus EV is in the hands of actual owners not just prototypes being driven for a few minutes by reviewers. I think it would useful to post actual experience on how well the Focus meets expectations.

So far I can say this is the most fun car to drive that I have ever owned. The combination of quiet and instant acceleration is fantastic.

Comments

· JT (not verified) · 2 years ago

Glad to read your remarks. I have ordered a Focus EV, due in weeks.

Is the turning radius OK for you?
One spec. I read said that is uncommonly large.

WHAT do you recommend for home charger?
I see ones by Siemens, GE, and others ... some may be installable by home owner.

· · 2 years ago

@danholl,
". . . the most fun car to drive that I have ever owned"
Welcome to the wonderful world without oil!
I'm interested to hear what kind of real world range you're seeing.
Does it come with a 120 volt Level 1 charging cable?

· · 2 years ago

Turning radius seems fine. My wife has a 2012 Focus ICE the EV handles about the same.

I bought a GE charger $999 from Lowes. An electrician ran the 240 volts to the garage and I mounted the charger and plugged it in. Works fine.

I did a 50 mile round trip yesterday on rural roads with 55 mph speed limit. I mostly drive in a fairly sedate manner though car really encourages one to accelerate quickly (no one beats me at a red light). At the end of the trip I still had 25 miles on the battery. Power usage was less than 300 wh per mile

One interesting thing I noted is that when car was first fully charged it said range was 74 miles. After this trip and getting a "zen" rating for my driving style the car now fully charged says range is 79 miles. It appears it takes your driving style into account when figuring miles to go.

One thing that I had wondered about was what happens when the car is running and you take your foot off the brake. I expected that I would have to step on the accelerator to make the car move but just like an ICE car when you take your foot off the brake the car does move slowly so you can back out of the garage just using the brake. Very nice.

· · 2 years ago

Great to hear. I also bought the GE charger from Lowes. My car is due next week and I can hardly wait.

· Dan Hollands (not verified) · 2 years ago

Nevada Jim - I know how we feel - my dealer's Demo car came in several days before mine . While my car was in Buffalo, 60 miles away for 4 days waiting for a truck to bring it to Rochester. My dealer helped by letting me test drive the Demo car which at least let me know that it was worth waiting for.

· · 2 years ago

One thing to keep in mind that I did not realize is that the MyFordMobile website that tracks usage and allows remote starting, etc. will not be fully functional (both the website and the smartphone app) until after the 2nd confirmation (24 hours after 1st in-car confirmation). This was not mentioned in the manual that I saw and was a bit confusing. I found that mine is the only car entered in the system in my region (IA, KS, MN, MO, ND, NE, SD) - not too surprising.

I was quite concerned about the available cargo space in the rear, but have found that it will hold the things I typically take with me. The cargo organizer provides a storage area which is level with the top of the battery and has storage underneath. The organizer can easily (just lifts out) be removed to fit bulkier items.

Other than that, my FFE has been running great and the range has been pretty impressive - I've been getting over 80 miles in mixed highway and surface street trips.

· Tim (not verified) · 2 years ago

Is anyone charging with electricity from PV panels yet? Just wondering what sort of mods you have to make to a typical home PV system to get 240 V and enough oomph to charge the car??

Or does the charger take care of all that, and you just feed it normal 120 V?

Excuse the newb questions!

· MaxBob McDermand (not verified) · 2 years ago

I am glad the Ford is Finally out there. We owned a lead acid EV Ranger so Tiffany and I have a soft spot for the Ford EV. Glad you like it. For us it will come down to the Ford EV or the Tesla S. We will drive the Tesla in two weeks then we will see if it is worth the extra 20K. If not the Ford wins. We do feel that Ford is not taking this as seriously as Tesla. That being said there is not better way to tell big oil to go to hell....

· · 2 years ago

We have had the panels producing electricity for almost two years. We sized the system for the EV, so now we have built up enough credits to run the FFE for at least the first two years. We have a two way meter so we give or take from the grid based on net usage. The charger and inverter are side by side in the garage, but are not linked to one another. I cancelled by Tesla reservation because I could not justify the additional cost.

· · 2 years ago

@danholl, is there a reason you didn't go with the GeekSquad installed charger that the dealer offers? It comes with a cool Ford logo (from what I can tell). Are there major differences between chargers?

I'm imagining it was just a way to save $500. But I want to make sure I'm understanding how things work.

· Dan Hollands (not verified) · 2 years ago

When I thought my car was going to be built in April I tried contacting the Best Buy and the Geek Squad and couldn't find anyone to admit there was a deal with Ford. My dealer tried to get contact info and was also unable to get an answer. I am in Rochester NY it may be the Best Buy didn't expect there to be EV's sold here.

I don't see any advantage to what Ford ads talk about. I knew where my car was going to be parked and I knew where plug was on the car. It wasn't that hard to figure out where the charger had to be.

· JT (not verified) · 2 years ago

Can the Ford EV be set to charge up to Less-than-full capacity?

And, does the Rate of charging have a significant impact on the life of the batteries?

I read an article that said lithium-ion batteries (in general) suffer if stressed by factors like being kept at high state of charge (more than 80%) or high temperature ... "suffer" here meaning having lower capacity (so less range). There seemed to be an implication that max. re-charge rate also could lead to reduced capacity, perhaps due to causing elevated temperature.

Suspecting that may be true, is there a good charger somewhere that lets you set how much current you want to use?

· Dan Hollands (not verified) · 2 years ago

I know the leaf recommends charging to only 80% but I have a Focus EV and there is nothing in the manuals that suggests anything but full charge. The focus is newer and has a temperature control system for the battery.

· Dan Hollands (not verified) · 2 years ago

So far my Focus EV has gone 650 miles and averages 260 Wh per mile

With a full charge of 23000 Whr the car should be able to go 23000 / 260 = 88.4 miles

Electricity where I am is 12 cents per 1000 Wh so 0.26 x 12 = 3.12 cents per mile

· Dan Hollands (not verified) · 2 years ago

Still Love my FFE - over 1300 miles 255 Wh/mile

I have experienced 3 time when the dashboard electronics didn't start up properly

Twice the left LCD panel that shows miles left in the battery didn't come on. I had to turn car off, get out of the car, close the doors and then get back in and start the car and it was fine. Just turning car Off and On while still sitting in the car doesn't do it.

Once Entertainment Panel didn't display the names of the stations on the push button. Touching the button selected the station but the button didn't tell what station it was assigned to. Solution was same as above.

Not serious but I wondered if anyone else had see these.

PS - I have solar panels on order that will cover all my Fuel plus lower my regular electric bill.

· · 2 years ago

Dan--

I'm commuting 55 mi round trip every work day since July 5th. Currently at 776 miles and 257 Wh/mile.

I really love the vehicle and am glad I chose FFE instead of the others I tested (LEAF & Volt). Fun to drive, stylish and just enough range to meet my needs. Nothing more to ask for.

I've encountered very few issues, but I'd divide them into MFT (MyFordTouch/Sync) issues and FFE issues. The MFT/Sync issues and history are well documented and I've got one problem I can duplicate easily. If I use Bluetooth and the Answer/Hangup steering wheel controls to make and end a call, after I end the call the radio (not previously on) will automatically go on and will no longer respect the ON button near the CD. I have to use the voice command to tell audio to go off before the system resets. Once while I was debugging this error, I also saw the missing stations on the Sirius radio. After restarting the car, the stations were back. I see this as an issue with MFT and not with the Focus itself.

One other issue I've seen was a bit more troubling, but it's not been repeatable since the one time. Once during 3 consecutive startup sequences over two days, the green "ready to drive" icon did not appear. The first two times I was just trying to backup and the car was not moving (didn't notice the missing RTD icon) but the 3rd time it was indeed missing. Turning off the car and getting out then back in cleared the problem. Since that time, the icon has appeared every time within 1 second. There is perhaps a sequence that will confuse the car and cause this, but I don't know what it is. It was within my two weeks with the car and I was perhaps putting it in reverse before pressing the button, etc. I've been very careful to repeat my startup sequence reliably and no further problems.

I've also initiated a 4.15 kW solar install that should be in within a month. :-)

Tim

· · 2 years ago

@JT

There is a lot of good information at this link that appears to indicate Ford has already limited the usable capacity to about 85% of actual.

http://www.myfocuselectric.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=7&t=638

· · 2 years ago

@Evocus

Thank you for that note + link. Good info., and it resembles what the sales manager at local Ford dealer replied to me:
"Jim,
We had our mechanics at a training session with Ford today on the Electric Focus. Our service manager and I took the opportunity to ask your questions regarding maintaining the vehicle at an 80% charge. According to Ford this is an Urban Leland [sic] and they recommend that the vehicle be maintained with a 100% charge. When the vehicle will not be operated for extended periods of time is the only time they recommend the vehicle be at less than 80% and to disconnect the negative battery cable. Hope this helps.
I was not there to ask why this would not be the case with the Leaf, but these are different vehicles."

I have no definition of "extended periods".

· Jim B. FFE (not verified) · 2 years ago

I've had mine for 5 weeks now and really enjoy the driving experience. The user interface and all the technology is reasonably well done, but I've had a couple of glitches - same as the others here. Not a big issue for me. One feature I really wish it had is an "Econ" or "Vent" mode for the HVAC. If you want outside air without any heating or cooling, you have to hit the A/C off button and turn the temperature down to LO. Anybody have a better work around?

Otherwise the car is truly a joy to drive. Plenty quick and handles great. Quiet and composed on the freeway. Very comfortable interior.

My one way commute is 19 miles of mostly 70 MPH freeway. Real world range is around 70 miles with a mostly freeway cycle.

I just got my home charger installed today. Coulomb / ChargePoint CT500 installed by Solar City. I also have charging stations at work.

Already applied for the stickers and CA $2500 rebate.

· · 2 years ago

@ Jim B. FFE

Glad to see that you enjoy driving it.
Mine is overdue (built 4 weeks ago, delivery yet to be scheduled) but we are looking forward to driving without gasoline.

Charging:
Please share your observations about ChargePoint. I see public charging stations around here (San Francisco Bay Area), many currently free beyond cost of parking in some cases, but nearly all require use of a ChargePoint card.
Easy to get such a card?
OK, or problems with it?

· · 2 years ago

@ Jim B. FFE

I'm at 4 weeks and 1300 miles and really enjoying it as well. I've got no other workarounds for the Vent feature other than what you suggested and that seems easy enough for me to understand. My range with conservative driving is likely 70-80 although I don't seem to get it past 65 miles.

I installed my Level 2 charger (Schneider model from Home Depot) and boy what a difference! 55 mile recharge went from 13-14 hours to 2.5 hours. Will apply for stickers and rebate this weekend.

@ Jim T

I have a ChargePoint card and have used it 4-5 times already. Easy to get from the website and use at their stations. Mostly I'm using it to add miles when I change up my daily commute so costs are minimal. There are a number of Apps and/or websites that let you know the location and status. The ChargePoint app will help you confirm that charging is going well while you are connected. Where you are in the Bay Area you might also consider a Blink card. Too bad these services aren't synchronized but we're in the early stages of this technology rollout.

· Anonymous (not verified) · 2 years ago

What is everyone getting with the ac and headlights on?

· · 2 years ago

I haven't used headlights much, but with AC on 70 degrees inside and outside temps about 75 to 80 I'm getting 257 Wh/mile average for my daily 55 mile commute. That average will typically net me the rated 76 mile range.

· Dan Hollands (not verified) · 2 years ago

Fawn

If you want a solar system to power your house, do not be taken in by the ads saying you can go to the hardware store buy a few things and make your own solar panels. They are trying to sell you plans that will not do what they advertise. Solar systems that connect to the electric grid need to be installed by professionals. There are permits and testing that must be done. I am having Sun Power panels installed next week that will generate enough power to charge my electric car plus reduce my normal electric bill. Almost half of the cost of the system will be covered by state rebates and State and Federal tax credits.

· igh (not verified) · 2 years ago

I have experience with this. I installed a 11.8 KW system on my roof last October. The idea was to generate ALL my energy in day-to-day living including the cars through the panels. I am an electrical engineer. I designed the system myself, bought all the parts online, and got a licensed and experienced installer to do the city permitting and install the system (was not easy to find such a person). As a result I could do it for 38K total. That is $3.25/watt before any rebates. State and federal rebates pushed the cost down to 25K. All these vertically integrated solar companies like SolarCity charge much higher. I am in the Bay area and my wife currently drives a Volt. I am eagerly waiting for my Focus Electric. The solar system is on track to generate 16,400 kwh for the year. I estimate my entire usage in my all electric home including both the cars will be about 14,500 Kwh per year. So I am almost about to pull off my dream of being energy neutral in day to day living. Bye, bye to PG&E, Shell, Exxon and Chevron - wont miss them one bit.

· Dan Hollands (not verified) · 2 years ago

I'm impressed - but this task is clearly not a job for the average person. I'm an EE but opted to work thru a local company the handles the permits and does the install. After rebates and tax credits it will be about $9000 for 3500kWh / year. I estimate my Focus EV will use about 2000kWh per year so I'll knock some off my regular bill as well as cover the cost of Fuel - this is in Rochester NY where we don't get as much sun as in PG&E country. My Solar system will be installed next week.

BTW I love my Focus EV - about 250Wh per mile after the first 2000 miles but the thing I love which they don't talk enough about in the marketing pieces is what a great car it is drive.

· igh (not verified) · 2 years ago

The wait for the Focus Electric has been frustrating. I do not want to buy one with leather and I will not pay at or above MSRP. I have been trying from early June. Ford sent only 10-15 non leather FFEs to the bay area so far. I will only buy frosted glass or silver. Then the number reduces to less than 5. Initially dealers were asking as much as 5K over MSRP. Finally, now the price has become more reasonable. I am hoping to get one by the end of next week. That will end by energy self sufficiency project which I started in 2003.

· Greg (not verified) · 2 years ago

We found that Serramonte Ford in the bay area is giving deals on the 2012 Ford Focus EV - up to $1,500 off MFRP. The 2013 are identical they say.

· igh (not verified) · 2 years ago

Actually I have the car for a week now. I got it from Harrold Ford in Sacramento for invoice price minus the $1000 factory cash - about 36,234 plus tax, tags, fees. Had to wait for three hours at Martinez while it charged before driving it back to the south bay. Great car - more than sufficient for my 25 mile total commute. Just use 120V to charge back in 6 hrs. On those rare days where I do use 70 miles still have 50 miles after overnight charge -enough for next days commute. Finally my solar array is being put to complete use. No gas bill is a bliss (wife drives a Volt).

· Greg (not verified) · 2 years ago

A person at Serramonte Ford told us recently that they sold a 2012 Ford Focus EV to a lady in Massachusetts - it will be shipped to her.

There are just a few places selling these cars in the USA. We did not want to wait 12 weeks for a 2013 model which are identical to the 2012.

Given the war drums going on in the Middle East I am thinking sales for these kind of cars will skyrocket.

· · 2 years ago

@Greg,

That's crazy to ship a car that far (from a dealer, to whom it was shipped from MI)! I hope she got a good deal, because they are also selling them in NYC.

· igh (not verified) · 2 years ago

I followed the following strategy: Use cars.com to see which dealers within a 150 mile radius from home had the car I am looking for. 150 miles is the maximum that the vehicle can be driven in a day with 3 hour mid-point charge time. Then call up all those dealers and ask if they have the particular model/options I am looking for. Some dealers do not have the car on lot in spite of advertising in cars.com. Then try to negotiate a price with the dealer if he has the car, over the phone. I was firm on invoice price. Finally, go and get the car. In my case I could find precisely 1 car with all the or above conditions after searching for 3 months. Used the Labor day weekend to start my EV adventure. Recommend Harrold Ford very much. Very upfront and honest. Sacramento does not have enough demand for the FFE. They are willing to deal.

· Greg (not verified) · 2 years ago

IGH,

Does the price $36,234 include the $2,500 CA rebate?

Or did you make an argument for a lower price which they accepted?

· igh (not verified) · 2 years ago

No it does not include the state rebate. The invoice for the base model is 37234 (36995 + some Frod Sync charge). The way it works is you add tax, tags and fees to this price
and finally subtract 1000 factory cash from the price. Factory cash is available till 10/01.
So the base model will be 39.8K approx. out the door. The leather will be 40.7K approx out
the door. I did not have a trade-in and arranged my own financing. Other than Harrold Ford, Fairfield Ford and Morgan Hill Ford were willing to do invoice but did not have the car with color/options I was looking for.

· Greg (not verified) · 2 years ago

Thanks IGH.

I see that you report that you are now basically energy independent. That's great. Hope many more follow.

We are about 80% uncoupled from relying on the "system" to provide our energy needs - with our recently installed 5.5 kW SunPower solar array which is guaranteed to produce about 9,000 kWhr/year. Our out of pocket, after rebates, was $14,432.

The next step would be to be able to use the battery pack in our new Focus EV as power for the house if the grid goes down. I see that power companies have considered using this synergistic approach to help load level their need for generating power by using these car batteries - one leaves the car plugged into the grid and if they need to use its storage they replace it in off-peak usage hours. Have you any knowledge about this "plan"? What do you think of it? Plus/Minus.

BTW I figured we will probably put about 5,000 miles a year on the Ford Focus to run local errands and do local outings - most of which are at 45 mph - and in our high desert location this means less air drag. I roughly calculated that the EV would take about a month's worth of normal household electricity a year or 1,000 kWhr's assuming the car obtains 5 miles per kWhr.

· igh (not verified) · 2 years ago

Yes, I am now energy neutral in day to day living. I say "day to day" because I will use about 100 gallons of gas every year - most of it for long drives and family vacations in my old Highlander Hybrid. There will be about 15 gallons spent every year in the Volt - we are achieving about 90% EV.

In the high desert location your solar panels will perform much better than the bay area which has fog and clouds. Here 1500 KwH per year per installed KW is the max we can hope for. My system is 11.8KW DC. It will produce about 16,400 KWH in one year (Oct 14th completes 1 year). Out of this my all electric home consumes about 10000 KWH per year, Wife's Volt is 9000 miles yearly at 33Kwh/100 miles which is about 3000 Kwh.

For the Focus electric, 5 miles per Kwh is doable but a bit optimistic even at 45mph. I am averaging about 240 watthours/mile with careful city driving. So I would say 4 miles per KWH. I will also put 5000 miles per year on the car. So it is 1250 Kwh. However, charging is only 80% efficient. So effectively I will need another 1500 Kwh per year for a total of 14500 Kwh well within my solar generation making me energy neutral.

Since it took me some time to get the EVs current PG&E bill shows a 4000 kwh surplus this year. I am expecting a $150 check from them (they pay only wholesale rates of 4c/Kwh). Feels nice to finally turn the tables on them.

As for the solar cost I designed the system myself and got an installer to put it up. It cost me 25200 out of pocket after rebates. That is $2.13 per DC watt. Your rate of $2.62 per DC watt is very reasonable for a third party install.

· Bill Howland (not verified) · 2 years ago

@JT

Just curious as to what brand and size charging dock you had decided upon and whether you installed it yourself, or what details you had to go through actually installing it, and whether the end result was ok.

· Greg (not verified) · 2 years ago

IGH wrote "For the Focus electric, 5 miles per Kwh is doable but a bit optimistic even at 45mph."

I have no car related experience with this yet - I garnered the 5 miles per kWh potential from the "110 Miles Plus Club" at http://www.myfocuselectric.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=663 where I see one fellow managed 128+ miles on a charge while driving at 35 mph.

Has anyone knowledge of how to use the battery in an EV as a part of a battery backup system for off grid use?

Thanks

· Greg (not verified) · 2 years ago

IGH wrote "For the Focus electric, 5 miles per Kwh is doable but a bit optimistic even at 45mph."

I have no car related experience with this yet - I garnered the 5 miles per kWh potential from the "110 Miles Plus Club" at http://www.myfocuselectric.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=663 where I see one fellow managed 128+ miles on a charge while driving at 35 mph.

Has anyone knowledge of how to use the battery in an EV as a part of a battery backup system for off grid use?

Thanks

· Greg (not verified) · 2 years ago

Here is a link to a range chart for the Nissan Leaf vs speed. Should be a good indicator of what the Ford Focus EV can do.

Nissan Leaf Range Chart
http://www.mynissanleaf.com/viewtopic.php?p=101293

· igh (not verified) · 2 years ago

@Greg

These 128+ miles are based on ideal conditions with no stopping. A more realistic picture appears in the community section of the myFordMobile website. There they provide a ranking list named "Zen Master" based on how efficiently people have driven their FFE in the last 30 days. Currently the number 1 in that list in the Pacific region is at 203 watthours/mile which is the 5mile/Kwh which you are aiming for. However just at number 10 it increases to 243 watthours/mile. I think I will make that list in another 15 days. :) This is why I am saying 4miles/kwh is more realistic.

· Greg (not verified) · 2 years ago

IGH wrote: "These 128+ miles are based on ideal conditions with no stopping."

Yes, I realize this. But these "ideal" conditions more closely correspond to our remote driving conditions.

IGH wrote: "A more realistic picture appears in the community section of the myFordMobile website.

Could you add this url to your profile Homepage.

· igh (not verified) · 2 years ago

https://www.myfordmobile.com/content/country/default/jsp/login/login.faces

This is the website. You can sign in as guest and look at the community data.

· Dan Hollands (not verified) · 2 years ago

I have driven my focus EV 3300 miles with an average of 252 Wh/mile with mixture of expessway and street driving - expressway here has a 55mph speed limit. If I drive in "zen' mode I can easily get 240 but since I rarely go a distance where there is a concern I have given up zen driving in favor of driving in sports car mode - a lot more fun.

· Dan Hollands (not verified) · 2 years ago

I have driven my focus EV 3300 miles with an average of 252 Wh/mile with mixture of expessway and street driving - expressway here has a 55mph speed limit. If I drive in "zen' mode I can easily get 240 but since I rarely go a distance where there is a concern I have given up zen driving in favor of driving in sports car mode - a lot more fun.

· · 2 years ago

@Bill Howland
I bought from SPX the model EL-50600 (their normal, I think), through their own web site. Has nice slim package, smaller than others.
Had a licensed electrician install a 240 v. outlet (with NEMA 6-50 receptacle ... there are several alternatives) for this model which can be plug-connected.
Works fine; am using its default 24 A. setting (can do 32, but don't need the extra speed and suspect the added power might shorten battery life slightly).
Small problem was drilling the hole for input cable (calls for rare hole saw size; I used next one up 'cause it is available).
Bigger problem was bending heavy 240 V. cable in tight space; would have been easier if picked the top-entry instead of side.
Mounting was fairly easy. Use is very easy.

· · 2 years ago

Buying a Focus EV:
Shopping different dealers is Very important.
1st one asked for 3,000 over MSRP (and had none).
2nd wanted 1,000 over and had 3 spots in their next order, and I went for one of those. But even after that was built (with options I wanted), Ford couldn't even estimate a delivery date despite weeks of asking.
3rd dealer wanted about 2,000 under MSRP and did some quick effective calling around to other dealers. Result: we had our car (with 2nd choice of colors but the cloth seats we wanted) in a couple of days! They drove it to our house ... not fully "prep'd" but OK.
John at Morgan Hill (Calif.) was very helpful.

Programming: instructions for link to garage door opener proved wrong for our (old) machine. Tech'y guy at Morgan Hill walked me through a different way that worked.

· Greg (not verified) · 2 years ago

I see that in late August 2012 GM dropped the MSRP by $10,000 in an attempt to reach projected sales targets.

GM discounts Volt, showing that electric cars must be cheaper for people to buy them...

http://www.startribune.com/business/170814616.html?refer=y

Will Ford follow?

· igh (not verified) · 2 years ago

This Volt story is BS. There is no Volt available in CA for 10K below MSRP before all the rebates. The max you can do it 2-3K below and even that you will have to shop around.
If anybody knows a CA dealer offering 10K off before any federal or state rebate let me know. The FFE can be had for 4K below MSRP but you need to shop around. The car is in short supply and Ford does not seem very committed to pure EVs yet.

· Greg (not verified) · 2 years ago

BS?

Google "chevy volt gm discount" - there are a zillion news stories on this.

· igh (not verified) · 2 years ago

They factor in the state and federal rebates to artificially inflate the discount. In CA a 10K
discount will mean effectively 19K below MSRP or half price. This is just not possible. This is another hit piece on the Volt that has been going on for the last couple of years. Just like the one that suggests Chevy losing 50K on each Volt by dividing the R&D costs with the number of Volts sold so far (Yeah right so when GM sold the first Volt they lost 1 Billion dollars !). You can Google that too - you will get 1000s of hits.

· mr23 (not verified) · 2 years ago

"igh" - can you name any of the dealers offering ~4K below MSRP FFE, or better?

· igh (not verified) · 2 years ago

I bought mine from Harrold Ford Sacramento for invoice - 37234 and 1000 factory cash (available till 10/1 on the 2012 model). That works out to be about 3.8K below MSRP.
Fairfield Ford and Morgan Hill Ford were willing to offer similar deals for cars on their lot. If they had to get the car from another dealer it was 1K higher. Unfortunately they did not have the cloth seat model I was looking for. So I drove all the way from Sacramento to the South Bay in the FFE with a 3 hour charge stop at Martinez. Had some immediate brushes with range anxiety.

· Greg (not verified) · 1 year ago

IGH - you indicated that you experience a charging loss of 20%. Was that with a 240 Volt 32 Amp charger or with the 120 Volt ??? Amp charger that came with the car.

The reason I ask is because I have now charged our new Ford Focus EV a few times and have noted a 22% charge loss or slightly greater using the 120 Volt charger that came with the car.

· igh (not verified) · 1 year ago

Actually it is for the 120V charging that came with the car. I do not have a 240V charger as with a 25 mile total commute 120V suffices for me. It may actually be 22%. I did not measure that accurately but estimated roughly.

· Bill Howland (not verified) · 1 year ago

Jim T. thanks for the info.

Now what is this about 120 volt charging causes 20-22% loss of charge? I don't have a FFEV so i'm unfamiliar with the situation.

Does this mean the charger shuts off prematurely as compared with the 240 charger or does it mean that once fully charged on 120 you can only go 80% as far?

· · 1 year ago

I purchased a 2012 Ford Focus Ev which I mostly happy with. My only concern is the 67 mile charge limit. I'd like to install a hitch on the car so that a bike could be attached when needed so that I can park the car in convenient location for charging but close enough to my destination. I purchased the following hitch which I do not believe was designed for the Ford Focus EV.

CURT Manufacturing 11158 Class 1 Trailer Hitch

Has anybody installed a hitch for a bike? If yes, what brand and model?

· Greg (not verified) · 1 year ago

@Bill Howland,

The charging loss partly means that there is a conversion loss going from AC to DC. Another loss is the the battery is liquid cooled in order to maintain its temperature which requires electricity if triggered.

So, the battery is fully charged it just requires a bit of a premium to get there.

I analyzed this loss by noting how much energy in kWh the Trip 1 or Trip 2 indicator showed for the miles driven. Since I have the 120 Volt charger the car came with plugged into a "Kill A Watt" measuring device - Model P4460 by Intertek (see Amazon for description) I can monitor the amount of electricity actually used to recharge the battery.

So for example here is a couple of trips and their data. The Trip 2 indicator on the Ford information panel read 11.9 kWh for the 12 Oct. and 6.6 kWh for the 13 Oct. usage. The Charge Begin was the accumulative energy use reading on the P4460. End is the accumulative energy use reading on the P4460 after fully charging the car.

Fri. 12 Oct. 2012 Ford EV = 49 miles using 11.9 kWh or 241 Watthr/mile = 4.14 mi/kWh
Charge: Begin = 1.8; End = 17.9; Delta = 16.1; Charging Loss =(16.1-11.9)/16.1 = 26%
Ford EV Cost = 16.1 * 0.13 = $2.09
Lexus Gas Cost = 2.5 gal * $4.69 = $11.72

Sat. 13 Oct. 2012 Ford EV = 30 miles using 6.6 kWh or 214 Watthr/mile = 4.67 mi/kWh
Charge: Begin = 17.9; End = 26.4; Delta = 8.5; Charging Loss =(8.5-6.6)/8.5 = 22.3%
Ford EV Cost = 8.5 * 0.13 = $1.10
Lexus Gas Cost = 1.5 gal * $4.69 = $7.03

· Bill Howland (not verified) · 1 year ago

@Greg

Oh, ok you guys are talking about 'battery efficiency', and other 'parasitic' losses. Yeah 80% is pretty good. Its at least that good in my Volt, and no where near that in my Tesla. But as your figures show, electricity still ends up being 1/4 the cost of gasoline. My juice is about the same here in Buffalo as you guys pay.

I always like detail. Thanks for the comparison between the FFEV and the Lexus. They are similarly sized cars?

Do you happen to know the ampere rate of your 120 volt cord? My 2011 volt is either 12 or 8 depending on the switch on the 'cord', but the 2013 volts default to 8 and you can only change it to 12 by going thru 4 menus in the car EVERY TIME!
My Tesla 2011 Roadster can is either 12 or 15 depending on a touch screen setting for the 120 volt cord. Since the car has a 230 mile range, and the battery efficiency is much lower (surprizingly) at 120, I rarely use it although for the Volt its fine. Its like watching grass grow or paint dry. About 2 1/2 days for the 12 amp setting.

· Greg (not verified) · 1 year ago

@Bill Howland,

Our Lexus is a SUV. We purchased the FFEV to run local errands which is about all we do most of the year so it is a perfect niche car for us.

I have not been able to find the specifications on the 120 Volt charger but I suspect it pulls 12 AMPs for a charge rate of about 1.5 kWh when you factor in a 25% loss. This falls well short of what the 6.6 kWh inverter can handle that is built into the car.

From my figures electricity ends up being about 1/5 the cost of gasoline as can be seen from our latest trip. Further, it seems the "parasitic" loss is settling in to about 25% which strikes me as being rather high as I was expecting something on the order of about 10% - similar to a standard car battery charger.

Tues. 30 Oct. 2012 Ford EV = 49 miles using 11.8 kWh or 245 Whm = 4.15 mi/kWh
Charge: Begin = 47.2; End = 62.9; Delta = 15.7; Charging Loss =(15.7-11.8)/15.7 = 24.8%
Ford EV Cost = 15.7 * 0.13 = $2.04
Lexus Gas Cost = 2.5 gal * $4.19 = $10.48

Curious about your Tesla - something we considered purchasing but didn't want to wait a year or so - what is its "parasitic" loss in %? Do you typically charge it with a 240 Volt 32 AMP charger? Further, could you tell us what kind of battery warranty Tesla provides? I assume the battery pack in the Tesla is not liquid cooled - anybody having problems with battery life?

· Greg (not verified) · 1 year ago

The 120 Volt charger that comes with the FFEV does in fact charge at 12 AMPs - I found this data on the backside of the charger. This means that it can charge 1,440 watts per hour using E = V * I. Assuming a 25% parasitic loss this would result in 1,080 watts per hour seen by the battery.

On one of my trips the battery indication was 11.9 kWh of juice was used. To replenish that charge would thus take 11.9/1.08 = 11.01 hours.

· Greg (not verified) · 1 year ago

The 120 Volt charger that comes with the FFEV does in fact charge at 12 AMPs - I found this data on the backside of the charger. This means that it can charge 1,440 watts per hour using E = V * I. Assuming a 25% parasitic loss this would result in 1,080 watts per hour seen by the battery.

On one of my trips the battery indication was 11.9 kWh of juice was used. To replenish that charge would thus take 11.9/1.08 = 11.01 hours.

· · 1 year ago

Hi- New to the list and ready to buy any-time. Have now driven a used RAV4, a Leaf and a Focus.

Rav was too wobbly-kneed for the price and had non-standard charging ports. I have a real love-hate relationship with the Leaf; most ugly design and dealers are completely non-responsive. Bit it drives extremely well. The Ford is a US product, very attentive dealer, good styling and I trust Ford to make a reliable safe product. The only thing I had a problem with was how twitchy it was to drive. Front feels too light for a front-wheel drive car and the brakes seemed dangerously sensitive. it would take quite some practice to eliminate head nods when I brake. All else was stellar. The sensitivity to driving was so extreme that I could not drive something like this on a daily basis in the Northwest where it's raining 9 months of the year. BTW I have owned Saabs and Alfas that were lots less twitchy.

Question: are all Focus EVs this twitchy?

· Greg (not verified) · 1 year ago

@Zerg,

You will get used to the touchy brakes in the FFE. This car comes loaded with more bells & whistles than I know how to use for my 72 years.

I considered purchasing a Leaf - but the battery was a concern since its temperature was not liquid regulated. I see a lot of folks in Arizona are experiencing loss of charging bars after only one year. The first bar loss means 12% - the battery acts as if the range has been diminished by that amount. Some owners have lost 3 bars - the additional bars are each worth 6%. The high temperature environment seems to be the reason. They complain to Leaf but get no response.

The FFE is a very well built and engineered car. Battery life is very dependent on its operating temperature range. Control the range and you get long battery life. It was designed for 10 years and 150,000 miles but the warranty indicates 10 years or 100,000 miles. In ten years I will upgrade to the latest battery technology - hopefully the nanotechnology ones that will give a range of 500 miles will be ready by then.

In the meantime I am enjoying a 90% energy independence status thanks to the FFE and our 5.5 kW solar array.

All you have to do is look at the long gas lines in NYC and NJ to appreciate the benefit of going electric.

· · 1 year ago

I am very curious to test drive the FFE next week to evaluate the braking. Re-gen is great but not at the expense of solid, linear brakes that offer comfortable, responsive deceleration on snowy roads.

· · 1 year ago

I'm not sure whether to purchase this one or the Chevrolet Volt. The Volt is probably a better all round car but I believe Ford has a better reputation in this market at the moment.

Car Service

· igh (not verified) · 1 year ago

I have both cars. The Volt feels more solid but is half the EV range. My wife burns about 2 gallons per month. She has a 12 mile one way commute. I drive the FFE. The interface for the FFE is too cluttered. For a car that you can drive maximum 1.5 hrs at a stretch, there is no need to provide so much electronics. The Volt interface is simpler and more well thought out. The Volt lacks the 5th seat which we miss when grandparents visit however the trunk space in the Volt is better than the FFE. The FFE has better electric efficiency than the Volt but only about 10% better. (30 vs 33Kwh/100miles). The Volt is more expensive by about 4K. The FFE I got for 40K (out the door) and got 10K back. The Volt I got for 43K and got 9K back. The Volt gives you the option of going on occasional long trips using gas. With FFE you are limited to a 75 mile radius and have to have a good plan for charging. As for reliability the Volt has been rock solid so far. The FFE interface has some niggling issues in the interface and recent reliability ratings for Ford has been poor mainly due to the poor electronics.

· · 1 year ago

Hi, I'm writing this for the current owners of Ford Focus EVs, as well as other EV owners.

We're hosting a challenge for EV drivers to showcase their vehicle's using real world data monitoring. We're very interested in getting Focus EV drivers involved to bring the vehicle more into the spotlight.

The challenge pairs drivers of each vehicle and provides free data monitoring so that drivers can tell the story of their EV backed up by their own driving data. The challenge is completely free, and the winner will receive an additional year of free electric vehicle monitoring.

Those interested can find out more at the link below:
http://news.fleetcarma.com/2012/11/19/ev-champion-challenge/

· Daniel Lancaster (not verified) · 1 year ago

I've had my Focus EV for 6 weeks now and was one of the 1st to get one in Washington State. I've noticed the battery performance is down from it's best (67 miles) in October to about 57 miles now in December. I want to thank the person who mentioned Ford only uses about 85% of the battery because I was searching for that information. I would start getting range anxiety @ about 14-15Kw used. I drive a 70 Mph highway everyday, the majority of my commute - and it's hilly. The best I've seen is 240Wh over 35 miles, but I've also seen 380Wh on the return. I'm averaging 3 miles a KW. The sheer lack of availability of this car sure makes it seem like it's a compliance car. They've been making them for over a year now, it's reasonable to think you wouldn't have to wait 9 months like I did.

· Michael T. (not verified) · 1 year ago

What is the typical energy usage at a steady, level 60mph?

· · 1 year ago

With no AC/heater and level ground it is about 255 WH/mile using cruise.

· Michael T. (not verified) · 1 year ago

Thanks. Is there a "sweet spot" around 60 mph that provides a good combination of speed and efficiency?

· Michael T. (not verified) · 1 year ago

Thanks. Is there a "sweet spot" around 60 mph that provides a good combination of speed and efficiency?

· · 1 year ago

Unfortunately the best efficiency happens around 15 mph which is around 120WH/mile.
After that efficiency steadily decreases with speed. So the advice is to go as slow
as possible without compromising safety to maximize range.

Also note that this efficiency is battery to wheel not wall to wheel. The charger will lose
20-25% additional during charging.

Efficiency will degrade with elevation changes, use of AC/heater (heater draws more than AC) and head winds, low tire pressure, lot of weight in car etc. Even if not using AC/heater efficiency will degrade above or below 70F ambient temperature as the automatic battery thermal management comes into play.

· · 1 year ago

How much does range change with temperature -- is there a reasonable approximation of (say) % down with every 10 F of temp. drop?

I have not taken careful notes for our FFE (bought in 8/2012) here near San Francisco, but estimate that our range has gone from about 75 miles (at maybe 75 F.) to around 66 miles now (around 48 F.), roughly.
Mix of 35 to 65 mph, with a few hills, inside air heater used rarely.

· · 1 year ago

I live in the South Bay and my experience is similar. With little use of heater fully charged range in winter has reduced to 67 miles instead of 78 miles in summer. Car is mostly parked outside. In the Leaf forum I could get a chart that shows 1% reduction of range for very 4F below 70F temp. However the Nissan battery is air cooled/heated. For the liquid cooled/heated battery of the FFE it should be higher.

· · 1 year ago

@Zerg,
Brakes: I got used to their sensitivity. Takes a gentle touch to control them smoothly, but it's not difficult. Am rewarded by cute % braking score -- which leads me to believe that there is very little wear on brake pads, so they should last a LONG time. (Another aid to low maintenance costs.)

Handling: my wife loves it. I feel I must pay closer attention to steering the FFE than in our 2005 Civic (or in my 1986 Accord) -- more so when going into strong head wind in rain. Takes light touch on accelerator when backing up a hill: FFE feels almost too powerful, wants to race up hill. Going forward, I really like that power, at all speeds.

· · 1 year ago

Just picked up my FFE last Friday. So far, I am very impressed. Seems like the perfect car for commuting around Melbourne, Florida.

· · 1 year ago

Hello FFE owners, I purchased a 2013 FFE in January and it has been a really great car to drive. I commute 35 miles a day and in the city with ac on 2 bars this car hardly reduces the miles left! If you drive without a heavy foot you really can run around making more miles than when you started out with or keep the miles in the same range. Many times I'll leave my house with 73 miles drive through town 3 miles and arrive with 73 miles! On the highway at 60mph if I drive 8 miles it subtracts 8 miles from my bank but again around town or stop and go traffic this car uses very little energy! I smile every time I cruise by a gas station, I love the fact of saving $250 a month on gas and no oil changes! The only downfall is everybody is fascinated by this car and I feel like Ford should pay me as a Ford Focus Electric demonstrator for this car, everybody has questions and take me for a ride, I should sell tickets! But it's worth it, just to see there facial expression on just how nice this car really is and not to mention a cockpit that looks like your flying a F16 and that electric motor sounds like a jet taking off ! Well you and I both know Ford could have made this car go 125 miles on a charge but it would kill there gasoline car sales. If a Telsa car can get 300 miles on a charge then Ford motor company can defiantly get half that,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,as mentioned above it would destroy sales of compact gas cars!!

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