Ford Sets Stage for Hybrid SUV

Toyota deal first by U.S. carmaker. Story reprinted from original New York Times article.

Published: 15-Mar-2004

TOKYO -- Ford will license hybrid technology from Toyota in a deal that may help establish Toyota's system as a standard for the industry.

Toyota has been trying to sell its hybrid system to a variety of automakers to help offset its high development cost. Ford will incorporate the Toyota technology into a hybrid system it plans to introduce late this year in a gasoline-electric version of its Escape sport utility vehicle, the two companies said in a joint statement Tuesday.

The Ford vehicle would be the first hybrid offered by a U.S. carmaker and the first application of hybrid technology in an SUV. Powered by the combination of a gasoline engine and an electric motor, hybrids are more fuel-efficient and less polluting than traditional gasoline engines.

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