Ford, CenterPoint Energy team up to prepare Houston for electric vehicles

Houston, September 14, 2010 — Ford and CenterPoint Energy will work together to develop consumer outreach and education programs on electric vehicles as well as share information on charging needs and requirements to ensure the electrical infrastructure can support the necessary demand.

The Ford and CenterPoint Energy collaboration also includes developing strategies to minimize the emissions and distribution impacts of charging electric vehicles by using statewide system renewable energy resources and more efficient use of household electricity.

This will be achieved by leveraging and showcasing CenterPoint Energy’s smart meter and intelligent grid deployment coupled with Ford’s smart charging solutions.”¬”ª

Over the next two years, Ford will introduce the Transit Connect Electric small commercial van, the Ford Focus Electric passenger car, two third generation lithium-ion battery hybrids (2012) and a plug-in hybrid (2012).

Ford is working with utilities across the country to educate consumers about what to expect from electrified automobiles and what is needed from the public and private sector to support this new technology. Houston is the third stop on the “Charging Into the Future Tour — Ford Electric Vehicle Tour.”

Ford and CenterPoint Energy also plan to work with state and local officials around permitting and regulations to support electric vehicle infrastructure. An easy charging station permitting process is considered one of the keys to electric vehicle acceptance in the Houston area, Texas and across the country.

Over the next two years, Ford will introduce the Transit Connect Electric small commercial van, the Ford Focus Electric passenger car, two third generation lithium-ion battery hybrids (2012) and a plug-in hybrid (2012). These vehicles will achieve breakthrough efficiency; some, like the pure battery electric Ford Transit Connect Electric and Ford Focus Electric, will use no gasoline at all.

Electrification is an important piece of Ford’s overall product sustainability strategy that includes a range of fuel efficient and alternative fuel technologies including EcoBoost engines, six speed transmissions, power assisted steering, aerodynamic improvements and light weighting materials. Ford’s electrification strategy also leverages the most fuel-efficient powertrains, the most technically competent hybrids and our global vehicle platforms in order to develop affordable choices for consumers.

CenterPoint Energy, Inc., headquartered in Houston, Texas, is a domestic energy delivery company that includes electric transmission and distribution, natural gas distribution, competitive natural gas sales and services, interstate pipelines, and field services operations.

The company serves more than five million metered customers primarily in Arkansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Oklahoma and Texas. Assets total over $19 billion. With about 8,800 employees, CenterPoint Energy and its predecessor companies have been in business for more than 135 years.

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