Eighteen NEMPA members and Ford staffers gathered at the Venezia Restaurant on the Boston waterfront on August 16 for an informal evening with Eric Kuehn, chief engineer for Ford’s Global Electrified Programs.
Kuehn, an electrical engineer who also holds an MBA, is a 26-year veteran at Ford, where his portfolio includes the highly successful line of Ecoboost powertrains. He was in New England to make a presentation to the Massachusetts Dept. of Transportation and other interested parties at Boston Greenfest’s Green Business Breakfast on August 17. Kuehn’s group is launching six electrified vehicles into the US market in 2013—two C-MAX models (a plug-in hybrid and a hybrid) and two new Fusion hybrids, one also a plug-in, alongside the new faster-recharging, 110MPGe Focus Electric with its smaller, lighter and more efficient liquid-cooled powerpack. The team will also launch the new 2013 Lincoln MKZ Hybrid.
Kuehn let his dinner grow cold while he answered questions on topics ranging from Euro-style, three-cylinder diesels versus gas-electric hybrids to the proliferation of EV charging stations. In turn, he grilled NEMPA members about the New England driving environment and culture.
Eric Kuehn (blue shirt, third from right) was accompanied by Bill Collins, Ford’s Director of Public Affairs in New York, and Direct Impact PR agency representatives Jen Burke and Vanessa Cooke. —Silvio Calabi, NEMPA