picture post2000 Ford Prodigy concept

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2000 Ford Prodigy concept

In 1993, Ford entered into a federally-sponsored cooperation that included GM, Daimler-Chrysler, as well universities, with the goal of 80 mpg vehicles, that could be marketed by 2003. The 2000 Prodigy was a submission by Ford.


2000 Ford Prodigy concept

Ford debuted its sedan at the 2000 Detroit Auto Show powered by a hybrid powertrain, a diesel-hybrid much less. However, GM and Chrysler’s concepts were also diesel-hybrids since that was part of the cooperative agreement. Ford’s 1.2 liter engine made 73 hp that combined with 46 hp from an electric motor.


2000 Ford Prodigy concept

The Prodigy weighed merely 2,387 pounds which means 119 hp wasn’t so meager. However, a few passengers would have altered that real fast (its interior/luggage volume would compare to a modern full-size Taurus). Incredibly, it’s slabbed shape sliced through the air with a 0.199 coefficient of drag.


2000 Ford Prodigy concept interior

Considering its light weight, the interior was spartan but at least minimally appointed. The outermost two screens on the dashboard were actually necessitated by aerodynamics as they displayed the view from cameras mounted where the outside mirrors would have been. In the end, Ford’s Prodigy achieved 72 mpg, Chrysler’s ESX-3 72 mpg, while GM’s Precept was the only entry to hit the 80 mpg target.


2000 Ford Prodigy concept interior

In 2000, Ford committed to putting a hybrid model on dealer lots by 2003. They did, but it wasn’t until 2005, with hybrid technology sourced from Toyota. But kudos to Ford for having entered that segment relatively early, and with a CUV. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem to have earned them much of a consumer advantage.