I was out of the home office yesterday (yay!) for a Ford Fusion event in downtown Portland. I have never been so glad to see a carafe of coffee in my life. Nancy Gioia from Ford gave a great presentation about the Fusion hybrid and Ford’s green plans for the future, but I had spent the entire morning without liquid fuel. Four cups later, I felt much better.
We got to take the Fusion hybrid for short test drives, and the LCD instrument panel is super geeky hi-tech. Apparently, the engineers’ first attempt was too much like a video game, and drivers in the simulation watched the gas-saving graphics more than the road. Much to the team’s dismay, that version was scrapped for the cool-but-not-too-cool production version.
Ms. Gioia also gave me an interview after lunch (sandwiches and cupcakes) for an article for HowStuffWorks.com on whether owners can recoup the hybrid premium. The article will be up on the site two weeks from tomorrow, I think. Her answer matches my math — you can definitely maybe make up that cash in incentives and hypermiling. But probably not. But maybe.