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Ford set to unveil solar-powered hybrid car

The Ford C-Max concept car uses a special concentrator lens to direct strong sun rays onto its solar panels.

Image: Ford Motors

AFTER REVEALING ITS own vision for hybrid self-driving cars, Ford’s latest experiment is an electric vehicle that uses sun rays to charge it.

Ford Motors’ C-MAX Solar Energi Concept uses solar panels placed on the roof to charge the vehicle. It uses a special concentrator lens – similar to a magnifying glass – to direct strong sun rays onto the panels.

The lens tracks the sun’s movement from east to west so that it can draw enough power to generate eight kilowatts of power each day. This means that the car can be charged at any time, provided there’s sunlight.

With a full charge, Ford estimate that the car will have a range of 998 kilometers, including up to 34 electric-only kilometers.

The company worked with Georgia Institute of Technology to find a way to amplify the sunlight and make such a concept work for daily use. If you’re in an area with low sunlight, the car also has a charge port built in.

The vehicle will be shown off at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas next week. After the event, the company will begin testing it in a number of real-world situations to help decide whether it would be suitable for commercial use.

(Video: YouCar/YouTube)

Read: Ford reveals its first self-driving research car >

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About the author:

Quinton O'Reilly

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