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Ford says consumer green attitude shift justifies drive to fuel efficient cars

Ford says the company's major push into high fuel efficiency vehicles is justified by market research showing consumers are already taking steps to increase fuel efficiency, and are willing to pay a bit more for higher MPG's.

Buying an electric and hybrid cars generally means paying the "hybrid premium" bump in price for the vehicle. For example the 2013 Ford Fusion SE has an MSRP of $23,495 whereas the hybrid model carries a $4,000 price premium for an MSRP of $27,495. Ford Motors released a info from a survey today showing the majority of American's will pay more for green products, and a slightly smaller majority is taking measures to drive more efficiently. Ford unveiled this survey in part to rationalize the company's new Auto Start-Stop technology that is an inexpensive way to automagically increase fuel efficiency.

As we reported separately, the 2013 Ford Fusion will have an option for the 1.6L EcoBoost engine with Auto Start-stop. The EcoBoost engine uses a turbocharger to boost gasoline engine efficiency, and the Auto Start-Stop feature automatically shuts the engine down when it would otherwise be idling. According to Ford, if 50,000 of these models are sold, there will be a savings of more than 14 million pounds of CO2 emissions and nearly 1 million gallons of gasoline annually. All this for a low low price of $295.

“As American consumers continue to get greener, Ford is rapidly introducing more fuel-saving technologies to expand the power of choice for leading fuel economy across our lineup,” said Ford group vice president for Global Product Development Raj Nair. “The new Fusion with Auto Start-Stop technology is an affordable way for consumers to enjoy some hybrid benefits including improved urban fuel economy and cleaner air.”

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