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Bill Ford: batteries could be the next national security issue

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Bill Ford: batteries could be the next national security issue

04/13/2010, 6:14 PMBY MARK KLEIS

Bill Ford recently gave an interview covering several topics that interconnect the automotive industry, politics and the environment. Among the topics was the sourcing of batteries for electric vehicles, a topic that Bill Ford could become a matter of national security.

Bill Ford, current chairman of Ford Motor Company, former CEO, recently sat down with CNN Money to discuss several issues affecting the automotive industry right now, particularly those with an environmental impact.

During Ford’s interview, Bill mentions that the U.S. is in a situation right now that could potentially follow the same path as oil. Currently the U.S. sees oil as a potential national security issue as the country is so reliant upon foreign nations, particularly in the Middle East, in order to get a large amount of our energy. Ford sees the growing trend of importing batteries, along with foreign development of battery technology as forming a similar situation.

Bill Ford also discusses other alternative fuels, such as the resurgence bio-fuels and ethanol as viable energy sources, particularly in America.

Ford Motor Company has designated one billion dollars towards EV development in Michigan in 2010 alone. Ford has already begun developing batteries internally, and plans to bring a battery electric version of its Transit Connect commercial van to market in 2010, an electric Focus in 2011, a next-generation C-class hybrid in 2012 and a C-class plug-in hybrid in 2012.

Crosstown rival, General Motors, announced yesterday that it will be investing another $8 million into its Global Battery Systems Lab in Michigan. The investment will nearly double the size of the Technical Center campus. GM had previously announced that it intends to become the first auto manufacturer to begin designing and building electric motors internally.



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Which is why if automakers want these Extended-Range EVs to become viable transportation, the batteries must be made here and only here.

Otherwise, it's just taping a Band-Aid over cancer and touting the whole "We've performed a miracle!" banner.

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