Posted 12.10.2012 in Cars by Editor
People who find the Nissan Leaf's avant-garde styling unappealing may find the Focus EV's more conventional styling a better fit. The car does not flaunt its ecological cred with distinct design, just a quieter presence as it rolls by.
Styling differences aside, the primary technical differences between the Focus EV and its closest competition is that Ford opted for a liquid cooled and heated battery pack, which allows the car to be operated in more extreme temperature ranges without degrading the battery life.
A 6.6 kW on-board charger provides a four hour charge time, about half that of vehicles with 3.3 kW chargers. For people who drive more than 70 miles in a day, or want to charge within the 12 am - 5 am super-off-peak utility rate, it's a significant advantage.
The remaining significant point of comparison between the two all-electric four door sedans is price. After federal and CA state incentives, the Focus EV will cost about $29,200, compared to a comparably-equipped Leaf's $21,800. Beginning in April however, Ford began offering $11,750 incentives that puts the price of a three year lease on par with the Leaf's. On a 3 year 15,000 mile lease, after calculating fuel cost savings and $2,500 California state rebate, the effective cost of the Focus EV is a miserly $52. If you can get by with a 10,500 mile lease, the monthly payments are at least $50 lower and the car is effectively free after the upfront lease acquisition costs including title and tax fees.
Electric Range: 76
Total Range: 76
Combined MPGe: 105
Battery Capacity: 23 kWh