As part of the late night comedian Jay Leno’s newfound power with his own prime time television show appropriately named the "Jay Leno Show" the automotive enthusiast is using that newfound fame to promote environmentaly friendly vehicles with a Green Car Challenge . The bit is very much like the BBC’s Top Gear segment, "star in a reasonably priced car" except that the American show will feature an environmentally friendly vehicle, in this case an Electric Orange Ford Focus battery electric vehicle.
As we learned a few days ago, actress Drew Barrymore will be the first famous person to lap the specially designed track inside of the NBC compound inside a zero emissions vehicle. The show airs tonight, so check you local listing for the time and channel in your area.
The Green Car Focus features a sophisticated electric power train that delivers almost as much torque to the wheels as a V6 powered 2010 Ford Mustang and is capable of storing enough energy to power an average household for an entire 24 hours. Thanks in part to the design team’s attention to detail, the Ford Focus BEV has a nearly 50/50 weight distribution due to the battery’s placement and a set of front springs and dampers from a Ford Focus RS as well as a unique rear suspension make this the perfect Focus to see constant time on the track.
More information after the jump.
FORD SUMMARY / PHOTO CAPTIONS:
An electric-powered Ford Focus is ready to race tonight on "The Jay Leno Show" (NBC, Monday through Friday, 10-11 p.m. ET) in a segment called "Green Car Challenge." Tuned to perform on a racetrack that was specifically designed for "The Jay Leno Show," the battery-electric Ford Focus will be the car used throughout the first season. Actress Drew Barrymore is the first celebrity guest to accept the show’s "Green Car Challenge."
A one-of-a-kind battery-electric Focus will make its television debut tonight on "The Jay Leno Show’s" "Green Car Challenge." Celebrities who accept the challenge will be at the wheel, driving quickly to establish a fast lap time thatfuture guests will try to beat. The "Green Car Challenge" will be a regular segment on "The Jay Leno Show."
The electric Focus to be driven by celebrity guests on "The Jay Leno Show" is one-of-a-kind vehicle, based on the European five-door production Focus ST, modified into a battery electric vehicle (BEV) as part of Ford’s BEV test fleet. The Focus BEV foreshadows many of the same systems that Ford will begin selling to consumers in an all-new electric Ford Focus, scheduled to go on sale in North America in 2011. The new Focus BEV is one of four electrified vehicles Ford is introducing now through 2012 as part of the company’s commitment to deliver best-in-class fuel efficiency with every new vehicle it introduces.
"The unique Focus BEV for "The Jay Leno Show" started life as a European production Focus ST, built in Germany in July. The car was delivered to Ford’s world headquarters in Dearborn, Mich., where engineers went to work, removing the traditional engine and gas tank and installing an entire electric powertrain – all in six weeks. With Recaro racing seats, a full roll cage, a five-point racing harness and wearing a unique (and fitting) "Electric Orange" paint scheme, the battery-electric Focus ST is ready for racing.
With a sophisticated electric powertrain, the zero-emissions Ford Focus BEV delivers nearly as much torque at the wheels as a 2010 Ford Mustang V-6. It also stores enough energy to power an average household for 24 hours.
Thanks in part to the battery placement, the race-ready Ford Focus BEV has a nearly ideal 50/50 weight distribution for improved racetrack handling. The front springs and dampers come from the performance-minded Ford Focus RS, a popular, high-performance European production model. The rear dampers and springs are unique to Leno’s Focus BEV.
The car is specifically tuned to perform on the track built alongside "The Jay Leno Show" studio at NBC. To help improve performance, Ford created a similar track at its proving ground in Michigan so the vehicle would be ready to handle the tight turns.
Besides an ability to perform on the track, the Ford Focus BEV boasts the impressive statistics of a conventional battery electric vehicle, with a range of nearly 80 miles on a charge and peak power of 141 horsepower (105 kilowatts).
|Powertrain: Permanent magnetic electric motor|
|Power: 141 hp / 105 kw|
|Torque: 236 lb.-ft. / 320 Nm|
|Redline: 7500 rpm|
|Batteries: 98 air-cooled, 60 A-h Lithium-ion batteries|
|Capacity: 23 kilowatt hours|
|Transmission: Single-speed gearbox|
|Steering: Electric power-assisted rack-and-pinion|
|Front suspension: MacPherson-type struts|
|Rear suspension: Independent short-long arm (SLA), control blade multi-link system|
|Brakes: Front: 12.6 in / 320 mm ventilated discs|
|Rear: 11.0 in / 280 mm solid disc|
|Wheelbase: 104 in / 2640 mm|
|Overall length: 171.7 in / 4362 mm|
|Overall height: 58.9 in / 1497 mm|
|Overall width: 72.4 in / 1840 mm|
|Curb weight: 3,421 lbs|