Detroit's North American International Auto Show Spotlights Hybrids
January 12, 2011
The 2011 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS), which will be open to the public from January 15-23 after industry previews, has already shown a spotlight on hybrid vehicles. On January 10 in Detroit, Ford revealed two next-generation hybrid vehicles. The carmaker showed off its first production plug-in hybrid electric vehicle, the C-MAX Energi plug-in hybrid. It also revealed its C-MAX Hybrid. Both are based on the new Ford C-MAX five-passenger multi-activity vehicle. The models will be built alongside the all-new 2012 Ford Focus and Focus Electric at Ford's Michigan Assembly Plant in Wayne, Michigan. The carmaker, which revealed its Focus Electric last week, announced at NAIAS that it would add 7,000 U.S. jobs over the next two years as a result of its growth, and that it was specifically seeking engineers who specialized in electrification. See the Ford press releases on new hybrids and job expansion.
Meanwhile, General Motor Co.'s Chevy Volt continued to bask in accolades when it was named 2011 North American Car of the Year on January 10. The honor is given by a jury of 49 automotive journalists from across a spectrum of media in Canada and the United States. The hybrid Volt beat out the electric Nissan Leaf and the Hyundai Sonata, which were also finalists. Volt previously collected Motor Trend 2011 Car of the Year honors. Others also sought to make a splash. Notably, Toyota, in highlighting its icon Prius, unveiled its new Prius v hybrid-electric midsize station wagon along with a small, urban-style Prius c concept vehicle. See the Volt press release, the Toyota press release and the NAIAS Web site.