This article is over 13 years old


Ford Names Houston Among First Cities to Get Focus Electric

Houston will be one of nineteen U.S. cities to roll-out Ford’s first all-electric vehicle next year. The automaker says it chose the launch markets based on how amenable they were to the electric shift. Wendy Siegle reports.



To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code:

<iframe src="" style="height: 115px; width: 100%;"></iframe>

Ford is jumping into the electric car market slightly later than two of its competitors, Nissan and Chevy, which are rolling out a small supply of their electric models in the coming months Ford says its fully electric Focus will go on sale in Houston late next year.

“With all the green advocates living here it should be a big seller.”

That’s Carl Chudy with Lone Star Ford in north Houston. He says Houston is a good market for electric cars because people here still have to largely depend on the automobile to get around. And electric guzzlers like the Focus Electric, he says, give consumers a cleaner alternative to gas engines.

“We don’t have great mass-transportation here so everybody needs a car to get from pretty much one side of town to the other.”

Houston, like the 18 other cities on the list, has been working to beef up its charging infrastructure for plug-in vehicles. Over the past year the city has partnered with utilities and charging manufacturers to install 15 electric powering stations across the city and more are on the way.

But despite all the hype over the new cars, some analysts point to a smorgasbord of concerns: the hefty price tag, the time it takes to charge up the battery, its limited range — Ford’s model will go around 100 miles on a full charge. Still, electric car promoters say there are ample incentives to buy the vehicles, including a $7500 federal tax credit and the fact that they’ll significantly cut greenhouse gas emissions.