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Ford Highlights Clean Emissions Vehicles

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By Kay Lowry, FCN


The new Ford Fusion, Mercury Milan and the 2006 Ford Explorer are in the "green spotlight" at the California International Auto Show, which opens today in Anaheim.

In the state with the nation's strictest emissions standards, Ford is hoping its entire Ford, Lincoln and Mercury lineup for 2006 will position the company well because of their low emissions and fuel economy.

"Ford is releasing more new clean air vehicles than any other automaker," said California marketing manager Lewis Echlin. "More Low Emission Vehicles (LEV), Super Low Emission Vehicles (SULEV), Partial Zero Emission Vehicles (PZEV) and hybrid products will begin hitting showrooms this month and next."


Echlin said he anticipates high demand for the Fusion and Milan in California. The 2.3-liter automatic transmission models meet the state's PZEV criteria, joining the Focus PZEV, introduced in 2003, which produces fewer emissions than some hybrid electric vehicles, according the Echlin.

He added that the PZEV Fusion and Milan deliver exceptional fuel economy, averaging 24 miles per gallon in the city and 32 mpg on the highway.

"These cars epitomize 'having your cake and eating it too,' because they combine their technical achievement in a fun-to-drive package that simply does everything right at a bargain price," he said.


The 2006 Explorer offers more power, improved fuel economy and lower emissions than previous models. The V-8 engine has 53 more horsepower than the 2005 model and meets the state's Low Emissions Vehicle II certification standards.

The 4-liter V-6 engine is certified as an Ultra Low Emissions Vehicle, something Echlin said could only be imagined a few years ago. It produces cleaner tailpipe emissions than the Honda Accord Hybrid, he added. "A lawnmower would produce more smog-forming emissions in ten minutes than a 2006 Explorer V-6 would in 1,000 miles of driving," he said.

The first Mercury Mariner Hybrid rolled off the line Oct. 3, the latest step in reaching the company's goal of producing 250,000 hybrid vehicles annually by 2010, announced by Ford Chairman and CEO Bill Ford last month.

In remarks to reporters at the auto show, Echlin noted that Ford is the only manufacturer working in a "concentrated fashion" on what he called the four technology fronts of promise for the future: gasoline-electric hybrid; clean diesel; hydrogen internal combustion; and hydrogen fuel cell.

"With increasing emphasis on fuel economy and emissions, Ford Motor Company is making a huge contribution with near-zero emission, high volume vehicles right now, today. And more are joining our portfolio in the weeks ahead," Echlin said.

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Impressive. Now market the hell out of this.


Actually, they are marketing the hell out of something that isn't so spectacular. PZEV doesn't take into consideration climate-altering emissions (CO2), just the smog-forming ones. Other PZEV cars on the market are the BMW 325i, Chrysler Sebring, Dodge Stratus, Ford Focus, Honda Accord, Hyundai Elantra, Kia Spectra, Mazda 3, Mazda 6, Mitsubishi Galant, Nissan Altima, Nissan Sentra, Subaru Legacy/Outback, Toyota Camry, Volkswagen Jetta/Beetle/Golf, Volvo S40/V50, and Volvo S60/V70 sold in CA or the green NW states. Interestingly, no GM products. Edited by empowah

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