Tucson and Phoenix will be among the first 19 markets for the Ford Focus Electric, Ford's first all-electric passenger car, Ford Motor Co. announced Monday.
The Focus Electric is expected to be available in late 2011, the company said.
The other markets selected for the car are Atlanta; Austin and Houston, Texas; Boston; Chicago; Denver; Detroit; Los Angeles; San Francisco; San Diego; New York; Orlando, Fla.; Portland, Ore.; Raleigh-Durham, N.C.; Richmond, Va.; Seattle; and Washington, D.C.
Ford wants to build on anticipation for the Ford Electric by making it available in as many pilot markets as possible, Mark Fields, Ford president for the Americas, said in prepared remarks.
As the nation builds up its electric-vehicle infrastructure and demand grows, Ford will continue to evaluate additional markets and consider making this vehicle available in more cities, Fields said.
Ford said the initial markets for the Focus Electric were chosen based on criteria including existing hybrid-purchase trends, utility-company collaboration and local-government commitment to electrification.
Tucson also is a pilot market for Nissan's Leaf all-electric car, expected to debut next month. A Tempe company plans to install about 240 electric-vehicle charging stations in the Tucson area next fall, under a $114 million federal stimulus grant.
The Focus Electric will be built at the Michigan Assembly Plant in Wayne, Mich. The car's motor will be powered by a 23 kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery, with a liquid heating and cooling system to maximize battery life and driving range, targeted at about 100 miles.