The computer world has spread to the automotive industry with the arrival of digital instrumentation on dashboards. Later, Internet connectivity was democratized among certain manufacturers such as Tesla, which deployed the concept of remote updating throughout its range.
Ford has just announced that it will also deploy these services on all of its models. By 2028, nearly 33 million units will be equipped. Over the past two months, 100,000 F-150 and Mustang Mach-E owners have already seen their copy evolve without even going through a network garage.
During the year, deployment will focus on 700,000 customers – primarily in the United States and Canada initially – who will be able to obtain updates remotely. On the program, a feature has already been announced: the arrival of Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant.
The improvements made will not only focus on the infotainment screen. According to the brand, “80 computer modules in the vehicle” are affected by future updates. “Now Fords will improve over time,” said Alex Purdy, the brand’s chief commercial officer, not without reference to one of Tesla’s main selling points in recent years.
Semi-autonomous driving, Google partnership
The arrival of Alexa will be the first highlight of these wireless updates. But Ford also plans to use connectivity to offer billed services such as the “Bluecruise” semi-autonomous driving option unveiled in mid-April. In the future, Fords will be even more digitally oriented as Ford has signed a contract with Google for the management of its digital services and interfaces.
“As Ford pursues the most profound transformation in its history with electrification, connectivity and autonomous driving, the merger of Google and Ford allows the establishment of a true center of innovation capable of offering a personalized experience to our users and modernize our business, ”explained Jim Farley, Ford president in April.
Otherwise, Ford still intends to accelerate its presence in the electric market by producing its own battery cells. Rather than calling on SK Innovation for its supply, the American firm will rely on its own skills and factories. It will take extra effort to do this.
Ambition could be a real advantage in a booming market that relies too much on Asian suppliers. But the F-150 “Lightning”, the brand’s future all-electric pickup, will hit the market in the summer of 2022.
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