Ford Hybrid Battery Packs Near Perfect !

Sunday, July 24th 2011. | Hardware News

Ford has had not one failure of its electric motors despite 80M miles and 380,000 in the field, The Detroit News reports that Ford‘s hybrid powertrains and battery packs are nearly perfect despite the its hybrid fleet having racked up 80 million miles in heavy-duty use with taxi cabs in San Francisco. Out of the 42,629,318 battery cells in use – which are the size of a household D-cell battery — only five cells have failed. That huge number of cells was used to make 190,000 individual battery packs for hybrid vehicles.

Ford currently has 380,000 electric motors in the field packed inside those 190,000 hybrids sold so far and out of that number of electric motors not a single one has failed so far. Despite the fact that the electric motors and battery packs are already achieving very impressive levels of quality, Ford is still working to make things better.

Ford currently has an 88% satisfaction rate for the Fusion Hybrid, which is better than the higher volume Toyota Prius that is the watermark for many hybrids on the market. That figure comes from data collected by research firm RDA Group for Ford.

Bob Taenaka is Ford‘s hybrid battery technical leader said, “The development of batteries for hybrids is a lot like rocket science.” That might sound like a boastful statement, but Taenaka should know considering his last job was at NASA designing batteries for the Galileo spacecraft.

The Detroit News reports that Ford sold 34,000 hybrids in 2010 and that sales overall this year have not grown despite the fact that there are more hybrid and electric vehicles on the market today than ever before. Ford is set to increase the number of hybrids and EVs it builds in 2012.

Dave Sullivan from research firm AutoPacific Inc said, “For many people, hybrids and electric cars are almost like halo cars — they draw more people to the dealership, but not everyone buys them.”

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