Ford Reflex Concept
From Ford press: The Ford Reflex proves that small cars can be bold, American and innovative. The sporty concept is expected to be an auto show star, reflecting a growing and important "small is big" trend in America. Reflex is a technological showcase with its advanced diesel-electric hybrid engine – delivering up to 65 miles per gallon – solar panels, flexible interior made from synthetic and regenerated materials, and such advanced safety features as inflatable safety belts in the rear. The concept underscores Ford's intent to offer bold, American designs regardless of vehicle size.
The vehicle's low-voltage circuitry is exposed beneath the glass roof and rear hatch, giving a clever nod to accessible technology – even as a fashion statement. The roof also features self-powered solar fans that cool the car when parked. The back seat offers the ultimate in small-car flexibility. A second-row "love seat" can accommodate two children or one adult. With a push of a button, a divider bar raises through the seat bottom, transforming one seat into two.
Reflex takes safety innovation a major step forward. Advanced safety technologies include inflatable safety belts and BeltMinder™ for backseat passengers. The inflatable safety belt helps reduce injury risk to second-row occupants. Ford's patented BeltMinder™ technology alerts the driver when second-row occupants are not buckled up.
Reflex features an advanced diesel-electric hybrid propulsion system that harnesses diesel, electric and solar power. This combination of power can deliver maximum fuel economy – up to 65 mpg – without compromising performance.
The concept features an electric motor on the rear axle in addition to the hybrid propulsion system on the front axle. The rear motor provides all-wheel-drive capability, improved driving dynamics and the fuel economy benefits of a full hybrid vehicle.
Reflex's energy is stored in a new-generation lithium-ion battery pack, using the same technology found in cell phones. Ford was the first manufacturer to produce an electric vehicle using this type of battery system when it introduced the electric Ford Ka research vehicle in 2000. Also contributing to Reflex's power and performance are unique headlamps and taillamps that integrate solar panels. The Ford-patented battery-charging lighting system improves fuel economy by using the sun's power to charge the on-board batteries, while capturing and reusing the daylight at night.