Ford Develops Family-Size Hybrid Car

Ford Motor Co. has developed a family-oriented hybrid electric vehicle, the P2000 LSR (Low Storage Requirement), which it will deliver to the Dept. of Energy for review in early October. Ford was contracted by the government to build the hybrid vehicle, which combines conventional gasoline and electricity for power. According to the company, the P2000 LSR can achieve more than 60 miles per gallon, "extremely fuel efficient for a five-passenger mid-size sedan," with a driving range of 420 miles on a tank of fuel. The company describes its LSR hybrid system as using an aluminum DIATA engine, starter/alternator, automatically shifted manual transmission, and high-power battery. The DIATA (direct injection, aluminum through bolt assembly) engine is about 35% more efficient than conventional gasoline engines. It is a four cylinder, 1.2-liter compression-ignition, direct-injection engine that generates 55 kw, or 74 hp at 4,100 rpm. Lightweight materials also were used to build the car, making it 40% lighter than a standard Ford Taurus sedan. Yet, engine performance is comparable to the Taurus, according to Ford. The company did not say when the vehicle would be sold to the public.

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