Ford Motor Company’s clean truck campaign surpasses the two million vehicle milestone
DEARBORN, Mich., February 11, 2000 – Ford Motor Company this week passed the two million Low Emission Vehicle (LEV) truck mark, less than one and a half years after beginning its industry-leading environmental initiative.
“We have publicly committed ourselves to this higher standard of corporate responsibility because we believe it is the right thing to do,” said Jac Nasser, president and chief executive officer. “Once we have the technology and can take an action in volume to ensure a significant, positive environmental impact, we will not wait for regulatory timetables. We will simply act.”
In keeping with a corporate pledge that has come to be known as “Cleaner, Safer, Sooner,” Ford announced in 1998 that all sport utility vehicles (SUVs) and Windstar minivans sold in the U.S. and Canada, starting with the 1999 model year, would meet the federal government’s stringent criteria for qualifying as LEV. This industry first was followed by the major announcement in 1999 that all F-Series pickup trucks would be LEV, starting in the 2000 model year.
Ford has made this pledge and is putting these much cleaner vehicles on the roads far in advance of any government requirement to do so. The large majority of SUVs and pickups is not mandated to be low emission prior to the 2004 model year.
Ford Motor Company’s clean truck fleet includes the Lincoln Navigator; the Ford Expedition, Explorer, Windstar, Excursion, and F-Series pickup-trucks; and the Mercury Mountaineer. The recently unveiled Escape small utility vehicle will also be LEV. These LEV pickups, minivans and SUVs will emit anywhere from 43 percent to more than 50 percent fewer smog-forming emissions than similar vehicles that do not meet LEV.
The combined effect from Ford’s early-adoption actions so far is equivalent to eliminating the harmful smog-forming emissions from 350,000 full-size pickups on the road today. On an ongoing basis, Ford’s action will result in 4,250 tons less of smog- forming pollutants being released annually into the atmosphere. It would take more than 600,000 hybrid electric vehicles placed in service to equal the air quality benefit that Ford’s action will have in calendar year 2000.
“The environmental benefit to date from our LEV actions is far greater than anything else that has been done in the industry,” Nasser said. “There has been a cost to the company for doing this, but we have found other efficiencies so that no cost from our environmental actions is passed on to the customer.”
Emissions actions are particularly challenging with trucks and larger vehicles because of the range of high-demand uses. However, Ford’s industry-leading emissions control technology and catalyst research have allowed Ford to make dramatic reductions in vehicle emissions, and the company has consistently led the industry in emissions-related environmental actions.
Ford has replaced most of its engine lines the past few years with newer models that are significantly better in controlling engine-out emission levels. The company also has one of the best catalyst research programs in the industry, and Ford scientists have developed a number of industry-leading systems to greatly reduce what still does emit from the vehicle.