Ford Is Claiming the Most CNG-Propane Options of Any OEM
Ford is talking up the first production, in Kansas City, of an F-150 pickup with the gaseous-fuel prep option on its 3.7-liter V-6 engine. “By next summer, Ford will offer eight vehicles that can run on clean-burning, inexpensive CNG/LPG… [This] puts the company on track to sell more than 15,000 such vehicles this year,” states a release.
Ford claims America’s broadest range of vehicles than can be modified, with the automaker’s full warranty support via the QVM program (Qualified Vehicle Modifier), to run on compressed natural gas or on propane autogas (also known as LPG, for liquefied petroleum gas).
The gas-prep engine option is priced at $315. It includes hardened valves, valve seats, and pistons and rings. Aftermarket or ship-through upfits run approximately $6,000 to $9,500, depending largely on the customer’s choice of fuel tank package.
By next summer, Ford says, it will offer eight commercial vehicles with the option, “a number no other full-line manufacturer can match:”
- Transit Connect van and wagon
- Transit van, wagon, cutaway and chassis cab
- E-Series van, wagon, cutaway and stripped chassis
- F-Series Super Duty pickup and F-350 chassis cab
- F-Series Super Duty chassis cab (F-450, F-550)
- F-650 medium-duty truck
- F53 and F59 stripped chassis
- 2014 F-150 light-duty pickup
“Since reintroducing the option in 2009, Ford has established itself as the leader in CNG/LPG engine sales,” the automaker says. Sales of 15,000 CNG/LPG-prepped vehicles this year will mark an increase of more than 25% from 2012.
Incentives Can Help Cover Up-Front Costs
CNG conversions can provide stability against fluctuating fuel prices as well as lower vehicle operating costs for fleet administrators, Ford says, noting that CNG sells for an average of $2.10 per gallon of gasoline equivalent, and is as low as $1 in some parts of the country, representing a significant savings over unleaded regular fuel.
Customers can accelerate the payback period by taking advantage of a growing number of state incentives, Ford notes: “Nearly 20 states – including Oklahoma, Texas, Pennsylvania and Florida – offer or soon will provide tax incentives or rebates for CNG-converted vehicles. In Florida, fleet customers will be eligible for rebates of up to $25,000 beginning in 2014,” states the F-150 release.
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Source: Ford with Fleets & Fuels follow-up