Rebellious Rancher Refuses to Return His Ford Electric Pickup

Mariposa County rancher who leases an experimental Ford Ranger wants to keep it, but the company has pulled the plug on such vehicles. [Save Electric Ford Rangers' Blog]

Published: 18-Jan-2005

SACRAMENTO -- Like any self-respecting rancher, Dave Raboy loves his pickup. The truck has served like a dutiful member of the family, hauling hay, fencing and other heavy loads across his 160-acre Mariposa County spread.

But this is no ordinary pickup, and Ford Motor Co. wants it back.

Raboy's truck is one of scores of experimental electric Rangers produced by Ford as part of a 1999 pilot program to test new battery and vehicle technologies. But with hybrids all the rage now, Ford has abandoned its electric vehicle program, and the half-ton EV pickups -- Raboy's included -- are set to be scrapped.


Third quarter losses and fierce competition for American car and truck buyers, prompted the automaker to launch a corporate-wide campaign last month to reposition Ford Motor as a leader in innovation and cutting-edge energy policies.

While Ford is having trouble getting hybrids to American buyers, in the UK, Ford cars average 20-40 mpg more than their US counterparts.

Ford's next hybrid will be the Fusion slated to be introduced in 2008, along with the Mercury Milan Hybrid.


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