One of the things that I admire about Ford Canada is its dedication to innovation. I experienced the company’s progressive drive firsthand back in January when I had the chance to attend the unveiling of the Ford Atlas concept truck at the North American International Auto Show. And I saw that dedication reinforced once again at Ford’s recent Power of Change event. This half-day experience showcased the steps Ford is taking to make its vehicles more fuel efficient and eco-friendly while also giving us a chance to test-drive some of the vehicles for ourselves.
The opening presentation featured a quick overview of the different options Ford is currently offering in its engines and its five electrified vehicles. From fully electric to hybrid to plug-in hybrid vehicles, there are choices for every market and in a province that has a lot of rural areas and a minimum number of charging stations, that’s important. The flat fact of the matter is that while electric vehicles are great for large urban areas, they’re just not a viable choice for small-town Saskatchewan. Options such as the Ford C-MAX Hybrid, an affordable hybrid engine vehicle that provides huge fuel savings, and the Fusion Energi, a plug-in hybrid that runs purely on battery power and only utilizes the gas engine when necessary, gives those in rural areas the ability to minimize pollution and fuel costs while still being able to make long-distance drives.
I was also interested to learn about the ways that Ford Canada is working with municipal, provincial and federal governments to make electric and hybrid vehicles a more accessible option for every family. From offering cash-back initiatives to those that purchase an eco-friendly vehicle to researching and installing charging stations in strategic locations, there is plenty of behind-the-scenes work being done to take maximum advantage of this technology.
After the learning, it was time for a drive! I’ve had the chance to cruise in the Ford Escape before at the Ford Escape for the Day event, so on this occasion I left that vehicle to the other media and bloggers that had been invited and took a cruise in the new Ford C-MAX Energi. I loved the power and handling, though the fact that the vehicle is so quiet to drive was pretty disconcerting at first!
I also had a great chat with one of Ford’s professional drivers about the accessibility and sustainability of the hybrid and electric vehicles. I thought it was interesting that he thought the best use of a vehicle like this would likely be as a second car to be used for running errands around town or making commutes to work. I have to admit, it made a lot of sense.
The morning was lots of fun and while of course I had a blast driving the new Ford C-MAX Energi, I also learned plenty about the different engine choices Ford Canada has to suit customers in different areas while still increasing the eco-friendliness and fuel efficiency of its vehicles. It’s just one more way that Ford Canada is working to ensure that consumers have the choices they need to fit their lives.