Green trends, sustainabilty and Ford

I’m currently attending the media-focused Forward with Ford conference in Dearborn, Michigan. Having never expected to be in or near the Motor City, this is a fascinating and very interesting experience.

But here’s a taste of what I’ve been observing and discovering – and what I’ll be blogging about over the coming days.

If you haven’t paid attention to automotive news over the past 6-12 months or so, you’ll be surprised to learn that Ford is leading the way in green and sustainability in the auto industry. They’re deep into working with alternative, sustainable materials to replace the large amount of plastic commonly found in all vehicles (more to come on this). As a company, Ford has been engaged in “green” in some form or fashion almost since their founding. But it’s only in the last decade or more that this has begun to become a reality in their products.

The classic Ford Mustang (1966)

I have to confess that I have a secret passion for cars – and that the Ford Mustang was my first absolute favorite growing up. But like so many childhood “passions”, this one went by the wayside with other newer, more exotic foreign models. And I didn’t keep my eye on Ford.

Fast forward to 2008 – the beginning of the  economic crisis. With all the big corporate bailouts, – remember how Ford said “no” to that? THAT was impressive. And what the company’s done since then is equally so.

Seems the company has been operating out of a new paradigm. One speaker put it quite well last night:

“At Ford, it’s not about finding the answers; it’s about asking the right questions.”

The 2011 Ford Fusion Hybrid

The upcoming posts will feature glimpses into the technology Ford has introduced – greatly improved fuel efficiency in all their vehicles, their hybrids, their electric car(s) and what they envision for the future. I’ll give you a rarely seen view of some of their research labs – never open to the public and rarely so to the media.

Bottom line is that I’m pretty impressed with what Ford has done so far and their commitment to green. And that’s a rare statement to make about any car company in this country, wouldn’t you say?

So stay tuned and come back to find out what I’ve seen that you may end up seeing on the showroom floor over the next year or two. It’ll be fun!

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