Ford made some major announcements today at CES. They have unveiled the Ford Focus Electric and a MyFord Touch system that expands even further on the Sync technology.
The big news of a new Ford Focus electric car – the first of 5 electric cars Ford plans to release in the US by 2013 – will help to shape the US car market in the coming years. They are promising a recharging time of three to four hours at home using the available wall-mounted 240-volt charge station – charging in half the time of the Nissan Leaf. In keeping with their partnership, the new Focus Electric offers value charging, powered by Microsoft, to help owners in the U.S. charge their vehicles at the cheapest utility rates, lowering the cost of ownership.
Focus Electric provides a special version of MyFord Touch™ driver connect technology, built especially for electric customers and introduces MyFord Mobile, a smartphone app and website for monitoring key vehicle functions and charge settings while mobile. Here are some the highlights they are focusing on:
- Ford has developed the all-new MyFord Mobile app for North America, allowing Focus Electric drivers to remain engaged and in control even when away from the vehicle. It’s part of a strategic approach to make Ford electric car ownership simpler and easier
- MyFord Mobile works via a smartphone app or secure website to give owners the ability to monitor and control selected vehicle functions anywhere they and the car have connectivity
- The new app dedicated to Ford plug-in vehicle owners helps remotely monitor and control vehicle charge levels, plan single- or multiple-stop journeys, locate charging stations, pre-heat or cool the car and perform other convenient electric vehicle-specific tasks
- A value charging feature, powered by Microsoft, allows Ford customers to reduce their electricity costs by taking advantage of off-peak or reduced rates from their utility without a complicated set-up process
- MyFord Mobile will help Focus Electric owners make smart-trip planning decisions with features powered by MapQuest®, which will maintain the largest database of charging stations
Some of the features provided by MyFord Touch are getting the current projected rate of charge, estimated range, time of charge necessary for certain distances, programming charge times for when utility rates are lowest, locating charging stations, finding the car by creating a route from a mobile phone to the vehicle, alerts regarding charging problems, and remotely locking and unlocking doors.
The app will launch with version available for iPhone, Android, and Blackberry and even features phones with WAP 2.0-supported browsers. The feature also is accessible via a secure Ford website.
The future of electric cars just got a whole brighter. And the latest upgrades to the Sync system are showing that this technology, not only has a future, but could become the standard in the automotive industry.