Today August 22 Alan Mulally Ford Chief Executive Officer and Toyota President Akio Toyoda agreed to a memorandum of understanding to share information on the development of a new hybrid power train. One of the biggest problems with today’s hybrid trucks are their expense. Toyota is an acknowledge leader in the area of hybrid technology. While Ford is a leader in truck manufacturing, the Ford F150 being the best-selling truck in the US. By working together they hope to take advantage of their separate areas of strength to produce hybrid trucks that are affordable without losing capability. They will work together on the development of the technology, but will use the resulting technology to build their own systems to integrate within their vehicles. By working together they hope to take advantage of their separate areas of strength to produce hybrid trucks that are affordable without losing capability. The development of hybrid technology for trucks is necessary to met proposed fuel economy standards of 54.5 mpg by 2025. Derrick Kuzak, Ford Chief of Product Development answered some questions about this subject on this video.
The two companies also agreed to work together on their existing telematic systems standards and technology. They hope to create a safer, more secure and consumer friendly in-car telematics system. Ford currently has the MyFordTouch and SNYC, while Toyota uses G-Link, G-Book and a new system called Entune. They are only working together on the technology and standards and will continue to develop their own products and systems. This is just a memorandum of understanding and a full agreement will not be signed until next year. Toyota and Ford still remain competitors, but working together in this case make sense to both of their bottom lines. It will be interesting to see how far this cooperation goes and if creates a successful product in the end for either company.