Ford Motor, the second largest automotive manufacturer in the U.S., will unveil a new plug-in hybrid car prototypewhich can be charged by solar panels installed on the car roof at the International Consumer Electronics Show starting from January 7thin Las Vegas.
The solar-powered hybrid car, which is named “C-Max Solar Energi Concept car”, can travel as far as 21 miles (34 kilometers) merely by electricity; when being on a full range, it is possible to have a range of 620 miles at the farthest as Ford claims. They installed 300- to 350-watt solar cells produced by SunPower on the car roof and Ford has an advanced announcement that they may have “un-plugged” electric vehicles in mass production in the future.
The basic concept of C-Max is to use a set of Fresnel lenses on the car roof to accumulate sunlight and to upgrade the solar cells’ power generation capacity. Besides, it is also equipped with a standard charger which can be connected to charging stations.
Developed by Georgia Institute of Technology, the on C-Max can turn its angle according to the sun’s position. Ford stated that the company has sold more than 85,000 hybrid or electric vehicles including 6,300 units of its C-Max Energi plug-in hybrid last year.