Ford To Debut 2nd Generation Escape Hybrid, Fuel Cell Explorer

With the help of its second generation hybrid drivetrain, the 2008 Escape Hybrid is sure to improve on the current AWD model's 33MPG city/29MPG highway figures.

Published: 28-Nov-2006

At this year's L.A. Auto Show, Ford is expected to show two eco-friendly SUVs -- one of which will be soon available for the public to purchase. Later this week, Ford will unveil a fuel cell-powered Explorer and a second generation Escape Hybrid.

Ford has been secretly testing its 6-passenger fuel cell Explorer for the past year in Motown and has logged over 17,000 test miles with the vehicle. The vehicle features a  50 kW hybrid battery and two 65 kW electric motors -- one on each axle. As to not impede on cargo/passenger space, hydrogen tank is mounted within the central tunnel normally reserved for the transmission, transfer case and driveshaft.

The fuel cell Explorer is said to achieve 350 miles on a single tank of hydrogen. For comparison, a V6-powered 4WD Explorer can travel 337.5 miles/450 miles (city/highway) on a single tank of gasoline and a V8-powered 4WD Explorer can go 315 miles/ 450 miles (city/highway).

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