NASCAR and Ford have a successful relationship as the American automaker and the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing have been working together since the very first NASCAR race on Dayton Beach, in 1936. More recently, Ford supplied NASCAR with their first hybrid pace car in 2008 (the Ford Fusion Hybrid). And on top of that, Ford was the first automaker to reveal a 2013 NASCAR race car, with the unveiling of the all-new Fusion stock car, in January.
So what's next for Ford and NASCAR? In another historic first, Ford has plans to give NASCAR a production model of the 2012 Ford Focus Electric to be used as a pace car at the Richmond International Raceway on April 28th. This will be the first time that NASCAR has used an all-electric vehicle as a pace car. It definitely won't be the last.
The reason we say this is because it only takes one glance at the Focus Electric to see that it's the perfect candidate for the job. It's rated at 110 miles per gallon equivalent (MPGe), so it will be cheap for NASCAR to deploy during races. Furthermore, the Focus Electric features more passenger room, more motor power, and a faster charging system than its most formidable foe, the Nissan LEAF.
Of course, it also helps that many of the higher-ups at NASCAR as excited for the opportunity to show off the Focus Electric too. "The Ford Focus Electric is a major statement of Ford's commitment to bring green innovation and performance together, demonstrating for NASCAR fans how conserving the environment, creating jobs and strengthening our country can be made to happen without compromise," explains Mike Lynch, managing director of Green Innovation for NASCAR. "With the largest sustainability program in sports, the NASCAR family is proud of Ford Motor Company's accomplishment with the Focus Electric pace car and what that means in terms of the tremendous impact of American innovation now and in the future."1
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