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Strategy and Governance

Ford Smart Mobility

Though our Ford Smart Mobility plan we are pursuing emerging opportunities with significant growth potential:

  • Electrifying our most popular, high-volume commercial vehicles, trucks, SUVs and performance vehicles
  • Growing our autonomy leadership by building on more than a decade of development experience
  • Developing mobility services and solutions to transform the customer experience and help solve people’s mobility challenges

  Read more about our strategy in the Global Mobility section

We moved ahead with a number of mobility projects in Europe in 2016:

  • Ford Carsharing Program, Germany. When it comes to mobility, sharing offers flexibility, a potentially more economical alternative, and also can help reduce congestion. We launched our program in 2013, partnering with Deutsche Bahn Connect, which operates Flinkster, a large car-sharing company. By acquiring a Ford Carsharing customer card, customers have access to a comprehensive network of 4,000 car-sharing vehicles in 200 cities – covering not only the Ford car-sharing fleet of nearly 300 cars but also the Flinkster fleet. In 2016, the Ford Carsharing Program attracted more than 20,000 bookings over the year.

  • FordPass, our new mobility experience platform, debuted in Europe. This provides integration with Ford Carsharing, offering 24-hour access to cars nationwide across Germany, including Ford’s car-sharing fleet.

  • Watch a video about GoPark.

    We launched GoPark, our pilot in London that focuses on building a predictive system that can use data to show drivers where there is likely to be a space to park at their chosen destination.

  • The Ford-led Driver Behavior Project uses a prototype driving app to empower drivers with a personal driver score, based on behavior on the road, and encourage them to drive smarter. This type of research could lead to cheaper car hire and car sharing, and provide insurers with information required to support discounts.

London trials new plug-in hybrid vans that could help to deliver cleaner air.

Case Study

Case Study: Driving Our Leadership in Mobility and Electrification

From fall 2017, a variety of selected business in London will be trialling a fleet of 20 new plug-in hybrid Ford Transit Custom vans that run solely on electric power for the majority of trips across the capital, including urban deliveries. This is part of a multimillion-pound project designed to contribute to the city’s cleaner air targets, encourage the uptake of low-emission commercial transport and boost productivity for operators in tough urban environments. Ford of Europe will launch the project in collaboration with Transport for London, backed by a £4.7 million grant from the U.K. Government-funded Advanced Propulsion Centre.

Commercial vehicles in London make trips totaling 8 million miles a day while vans account for up to 75 percent of peak commercial traffic in the city. The 12-month fleet trial is part of Ford’s commitment to work with major cities around the world to tackle their local transport challenges, and help people and goods move more easily.

The data gathered from a range of different drivers, uses and experiences will add to collective understanding and inform Ford’s mobility solutions of the future. Similar trials are being planned in Cologne, Germany, Valencia, Spain, and Istanbul, Turkey, over the next two years.

Ford was Europe’s number one selling commercial vehicle brand for the second consecutive year in 2016, and our Transit Custom plug-in hybrid is scheduled for commercial production in 2019. We intend to leverage this and our other core strengths in automotive to build our leadership in electrification.

  Read more about the plug-in hybrid fleet trial in London


Innovating to Address the Problem of the “Last Mile”

Kilian Vas is a systems engineer in Cologne, Germany, with an innovative idea for solving the problem of the “last mile” – often the trickiest part of an urban commute. Kilian’s invention is the Carr-E – a four-wheeled electric pedestrian assistant for city mobility – which was a finalist in Ford’s Last Mile Innovation Challenge, open to employees around the world.

Hear what inspired Kilian Vas to design the Carr–E.

The Carr-E has a compact, circular design. Part of the design inspiration is to enable commuters to easily store it in a vehicle, then pull it out and use it in places where cars aren’t permitted or practical.

Pothole Warnings: Working on Future Technologies

Damage caused by potholes can lead to costly repairs, while bad road surfaces contribute to more than a third of all accidents every year.

At our Aachen Research and Innovation Center in Germany, we are researching an ingenious crowdsourced virtual pothole map to provide warnings direct to the driver’s dashboard. The data collected from drivers who encounter potholes is relayed to other road users in real time so they know where potholes are and can avoid them. The real-time warnings are made possible by cameras and an embedded modem in the car.

  Read more about the pothole warnings research project