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Ford's C-MAX Solar Energi Concept is powered by a roof panel, rolls to CES next week

Billy Steele

The tech inside green vehicles continues to improve, and Ford has just announced a concept that looks to push it even further. The US automaker has outed the C-MAX Solar Energi Concept: a vehicle that packs in all of the perks of a plug-in hybrid, but doesn't require that tether to recharge. As the name suggests, a roof-mounted solar panel collects a day's worth of energy needed to churn out the same performance as the C-MAX Energi Hybrid; however, the new Solar Energi model seeks to do so without relying on the ol' power grid. The panel itself houses "a special solar concentrator lens" that acts like a magnifying glass, directing those requisite rays on the rooftop. After rolling around the lot of the LVCC at CES next week, the concept vehicle will be tested by researchers from Ford and Georgia Tech -- who helped develop the panel system -- to see if the C-MAX Solar Energi is indeed viable for production. For now, we'll have to wait to grab a closer look in a few days.

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