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Friday September 20th, 2019 2:43PM

The Latest: Ford plans big push into electrics in Europe

By The Associated Press

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — The Latest on the Frankfurt auto show (all times local):

12:30 p.m.

Ford Motor Co. says that more than half of its European sales will be electric-powered by 2022 as it unveils a premium model of its Puma crossover that uses recovered braking energy to boost acceleration.

Ford showed off the Puma Titanium X on Tuesday at the Frankfurt Motor Show. The vehicle is a so-called mild hybrid, meaning it can store energy from braking and coasting in a 48-volt lithium-ion battery and send that power to the wheels to assist the gasoline engine when needed.

Ford, which got a late start in developing electric vehicles, last year sold 974,856 passenger vehicles overall in Europe.

It says it will have a battery-only SUV based on the Mustang in 2020. In the meantime it is offering plug-in hybrids that combine battery power with internal combustion engines to lower emissions and increase mileage. Like all automakers, Ford is facing stricter European Union limits on average emissions of carbon dioxide starting in 2021 and must find a lower emission vehicle mix to avoid fines.

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11:50 a.m.

Volkswagen CEO Herbert Diess says his company's massive scale will enable it to make profits on large numbers of affordable electric cars it aims to sell in the next several years.

Electric competitor Tesla has not yet turned a profit while analysts say fellow German automaker BMW has lost money on its i3 electric.

Diess told The Associated Press on Tuesday: "Our approach is different. We come with high volumes, we come with a dedicated platform that is only for electric cars, and we generate a lot of scale because we are investing at the same time in China, in Europe, and in the US."

Volkswagen is showing off the ID.3 at the Frankfurt Motor Show, a battery-powered compact with a base price under 30,000 euros ($33,000). Volkswagen aims to have 40% of its sales as electrics by 2030 even though such cars are currently less than 2% of the market in Europe.

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7:01 a.m.

The headwinds buffeting the auto industry are making themselves felt at the Frankfurt Motor Show, with companies confronting a slowdown in sales due to global trade uncertainty and pressure from governments to lower emissions of air pollutants and greenhouse gases.

Signs of the times at this year's show include a slew of new, market-ready electric cars led by Volkswagen's ID.3 compact that aim to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. There will also be protests from cyclists, environmentalists and industry critics who want a more pedestrian- and bicycle-friendly transportation policy, and efforts by the auto executives to engage those critics in discussion.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Business, AP Business - Corporate News, AP Business - Industries, AP Business - Utilities
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