When Ford announced their plan to release 13 new electrified vehicles in the next five years, they weren’t just talking about grocery getters. The next to hit the market will be a police pursuit rated Ford Fusion Hybrid, targeted at the law enforcement market. Not only is this the first ever hybrid rated for police use, but it is also the first of two that Ford plans to manufacture.
The Fusion Hybrid, which goes on sale in spring and will begin deliveries next summer, earns its pursuit rating with its ability to switch to “maximum performance” mode automatically. While in this mode, the engine and battery work at a heightened acceleration and can get the car to 60 mph on the battery alone.
Police departments stand to save a lot of money with these on the streets, too. The Fusion gets 38 mpg, which is double what they can get from Ford’s previous police pursuit vehicle. Ford, the market leader in the police car market with a 63% share, claims the car will save police departments $3,900 a year in fuel costs.
While Ford continues to lead the U.S. police car market, they’re also doing work to expand into the world’s largest auto market—China. Ford has begun exploring a joint venture with Chinese automaker Anhui Zotye Automobile Co, in which both companies would build electric vehicles under a new brand. While nothing is final, this could be a good opportunity for Ford, whose market share has slipped 7% in China recently.
In an attempt to combat smog and pollution in its major cities, China is aiming for one fifth of its auto sales to be electric by 2025, so demand should be growing. Other automakers, including General Motors, have already announced plans to get in on the action. Ford is expecting big growth for the EV market in China and is already planning on releasing fully electric versions of all its Chinese models by 2025.