Ford Picks Troy's Compact Power For Focus Batteries

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Ford Motor Co. (NYSE:F) Tuesday announced it has selected Troy-based Compact Power Inc. to build lithium-ion battery packs for the Ford Focus Electric, which will go on sale in the United States in 2011.

Ford says the selection is based on the expertise of CPI and its parent, Korea’s LG Chem, in advanced flat format lithium-ion cells and advanced liquid-cooled modules and battery management systems.

Said Sherif Marakby, director of Ford’s sustainable mobility products and hybrid programs: “We are moving aggressively with our electrification strategy and our work to help make Michigan a center of excellence for a range of electrified vehicles.”

CPI will begin battery pack assembly for the Ford Focus Electric next year and is finalizing production site selection for the U.S. The lithium-ion cells for the packs will initially be sourced from Korea through LG Chem. LG Chem and CPI will be localizing cell production at their new site in Holland.

Prabhakar Patil, CPI’s CEO, said Ford’s decision “tells us we are on track in developing high-power and high-energy lithium-ion batteries that the industry needs as it moves toward the electrification of vehicles that lessen our dependence on foreign oil.”

The cells will incorporate LG Chem’s proprietary chemistry and its industry-leading safety-reinforced-separator technology that provides unparalleled safety performance.

Focus Electric will have a targeted range of up to 100 miles per full charge with zero tailpipe emissions. It is one of five electrified vehicles Ford is bringing to market in the U.S. in the next two years. These include the Transit Connect Electric, a small commercial van in 2010; the Focus Electric in 2011; two new lithium-ion battery-powered hybrids; and a plug-in hybrid in 2012.

Focus Electric, a full battery electric passenger car, will be produced at the Michigan Assembly Plant in Wayne, which will begin producing gasoline versions of the all-new 2011 Focus later this year.

Ford previously announced plans to invest $550 million to transform the Michigan Assembly Plant from a large SUV factory to a modern car plant to build the new Focus and Focus Electric. The plant also will produce a next-generation hybrid and a plug-in hybrid in 2012. All of the vehicles will be built off the company’s new global C-car platform.

This complements Ford’s overall strategy to establish a center of excellence in Michigan for electrification of a broad range of vehicles, including lithium-ion battery-powered hybrids, plug-ins and pure electric vehicles. Ford is committed to delivering electrified vehicles as part of its overall vehicle portfolio designed to deliver both the fuel efficiency and the performance customers demand.

More at www.ford.com.

(c) 2010, WWJ Newsradio 950. All rights reserved.

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