The fact that the honeybee population – which is vital to the planet’s ecosystem – has been on steep decline in the United States for the last three decades, is not at all lost on Ford, who works hard to stay involved in environmental restoration projects.
So, it really comes as no surprise that the Ford Rouge Complex in Detroit is home to over 80,000 honeybees as part of the company’s wildlife habitat strategy – the Heritage 2000 program – which began in the early 2000s. Fifteen years ago, efforts were made to green-up the Rouge facility, which employed an architect and sustainability designer to give the complex a total makeover. Among the renovations made was the planting of crabapple trees, which, incidentally, are great for honeybee pollination.
According to Ford Media Center, Mary Mason, a Ford safety investigation engineer, brought some of her own bees to join the colony and has cared for all of the honeybees voluntarily for the past three years. “I think it’s wonderful Ford is so environmentally connected, and that officials are interested in how the company affects its community,” she says. “I just love that they’re letting me keep the bees here. It’s important they’re protected.”
We are Sound Ford are also proud to be a part of a company that puts its community first, and adhere to the same priorities right here in the Seattle area.
Science, technology, engineering, art and math : all are critical aspects of education. But many communities are lacking in means to truly challenge students in these areas. Ford Motor Company recognizes this need.
Over three decades of inspiring youth – an inspiration after the heart of Henry Ford himself for a better world – has cumulated into Ford’s STEAM Experience. Ford Motor Company fosters a commitment toward cultivating interest in American youth to pursue science, technology, engineering, art and math. The company wants to see the legacy of innovation its created continue through generations to come.
Among the STEAM programs are those like Ford High School Science and Technology Program and Ford Next Generation Learning – both of which work to provide hands-on learning experiences through mentorship. Additional programs help to inspire youth where challenges and life-altering educational experiences are limited. Those programs include:
Girls Who Code
Girls’ Fast Track Races
The long-term goal is for these children to discover a passion and drive for one or more of these focus areas, so they will passionately seek a career guided toward creativity and innovation, paving the way of the future. You can find out more on the Ford STEAM Experience website.
Ford Motor Vehicles caught the attention of consumers in China and there are no signs of it stopping. Over the first three quarters of the year, there have been nearly 880,000 Ford and it’s various ventures vehicles sold in China – up 11 percent from 2015 – with demand rising by 24 percent in September alone.
What’s given Ford such a strong foothold in the largest auto market in the world? It’s the company’s SUV lineup making all the noise. The 230,000 Ford vehicles sold in China (an 18 percent increase over last year) include: Ford Explorer Ford Edge
Don’t forget the Ford Mustang, which is also growing in popularity in this Asian country, with over 2,300 sold so far this year. And the big hitter: Ford Focus, with sales already up a whopping 43 percent over 2015 at nearly 20,000 sold by end of September 2016.
“Ford has been building momentum month after month,” says Peter Fleet, vice president of marketing, sales and service for Ford Asia Pacific, “winning new customers with the most exciting and appealing lineup we have over offered in China. We will continue to listen to customers and meet their needs with great new cars, SUVs and commercial vehicles.”
The Girl Scouts councils in Florida, Southeast Michigan, Northeast Texas and Northern New Jersey would likely disagree with anyone that asserted such a claim; as would Ford Motor Company.
And to prove it, the two organizations are teaming up to provide Girls’ Fast Track Races to 200 Brownies and 200 Juniors from each of the four Girl Scout councils. As a part of the Ford STEAM Experience program, the Fast Track program will allow these young girls the chance to build their own track race cars and expand their knowledge of engineering and automotive science. Encouraging creativity and motivating the following of dreams, those participating will compete, learn and excel.
“We believe that all young children have an aptitude for technical subjects,” says Tracy Magee, Ford’s primary brand experiential manager, according to the Ford Motor Company Media Center. “What’s often lacking is the encouragement and additional support to succeed. Ford is deeply committed to education and, through creative programs such as the Girls’ Face Track Races, we hope to spark excitement among the you and inspire them to pursue future careers in high-tech fields.”
As such, the goal overall is to give these girls a brighter future, and spark innovation for the entire community.
Ford Focus Electric is six years old, and when it launched in 2012, it had a competitive edge. But times, they are a-changing, so the Focus Electric is getting an upgrade.
The 2017 model will go from a charge drive range of 73 miles to an estimated 100 miles. Additionally, Ford Motor Company plans to add a DC fast-charge battery, which will enable the car to charge the battery up to 80 percent capacity in just 30 minutes at a Combined Charging Station (CCS) available in the Unites States and Europe.
This Ford Focus Electric relaunch is just one of many strategies the company is taking in an effort to expand its influence in the electrification market. At the end of 2015, Ford announced a $4.5 billion investment in electrification with a goal of launching 13 electrified vehicles by 2020. In turn, by that time, more than 40 percent of Ford vehicles sold all over the world would also have the option of an electrified version for consumers.
This is one of many ways that Ford Motor Company continues to look to the future of transportation and sustainability of our planet’s resources.
Marking the 10th anniversary of the Ford Volunteers Corp, the Bill Ford Better World Challenge was launched last year. As an extension of this challenge, Ford Motor Company designated September Ford Global Caring Month, in which around 20,000 Ford volunteers will conduct community service projects all around the world. These year’s projects include:
Since last year’s launch, members of the Ford Volunteer Corp have represented $29 million of in-kind community investments in 48 countries through more than one million hours of community service. This years’ projects included:
Renovations of a secondary school in Angola
Work on the grounds for a Salvation Army family retreat in Australia
Renovating a nursery, daycare and library in Columbia
Construction work at a high school and the development of urban gardens in Germany
Renovations to a senior citizens home in India
Building water storage, feeding the hungry and renovating an orphanage in Mexico
Renovating homes for children in South Africa
Rebuilding a water system in Thailand
Modernizing a mental health facility in the United Kingdom
160 community activities across 16 states in the United States
Additional work in Cambodia, Malaysia, Guam and Samoa
Additionally, Ford Fund contributed grants totaling $700,000 for the supplies needed to complete each of the projects.
“The positive, powerful impact this work has on people and communities is remarkable,” says Janet Lawson, director of the Ford Volunteers Corps, according to the Ford Motor Company Media Center. “Each year a better world comes into sharper focus through the caring efforts of Ford employees and our nonprofit partners.”
Sound Ford believes in taking initiative to make the world a better place, right here in the Seattle area. We pride ourselves on community involvement as well -- upholding the standard of excellence that comes with being an industry leader.
While Ford Motor Company certainly gets kudos for success in the truck and utility vehicle sectors of the industry, there are areas of its core business that – by Ford’s high standards – are underperforming. So the company is working diligently to change that notion.
One of the company's main focal points is its Ford luxury brand. This means taking the Lincoln series up in caliber to differentiate it as a world-class luxury vehicle, both in product and in client experience.
The last four years of work have already sent the Lincoln series on an upward trajectory, with global sales increasing by 77 percent since 2012. Ford released four new Lincoln series vehicles during that time, showing vast improvement in quality and customer service in the U.S. In fact, Lincoln now outranks the Lexus as the top rated brand on the American Customer Satisfaction Index.
Ford is looking to increase profits in the small vehicle sector too. Ambitions include improving brand resonance, designs tailored to the target market, reducing the manufacturing complexity of the vehicles and decreasing costs.
Improvements have already shown extremely favorable even over the past year with the Ford Focus model. There is a 99.9 percent complexity reduction projected over the next few years– from 200,000 in 2015 to 300 for 2017 models all the way down to an anticipated 30 for the next-generation Ford Focus. Savings is expected to be approximately $300 per car.
And, of course, savings on the manufacturing side means savings for the consumer as well!
Major cities around the globe are crowded. And the roads are teaming with cars – often at a dead stop. A simple 15 mile trek can turn into a near two-hour trek in rush hour traffic.
That’s why Ford Motor Company developed its City Solutions team and is partnering with global cities to work toward transportation initiatives that the company hopes will be a big step toward solving congestion issues and provide more environment-minded options for movement in the future.
“Cities globally are dealing with increased congestion, a growing middle class and environmental issues – all of which can be alleviated by developing mobility solutions fine-tuned to the unique challenges of each location,” says Jim Hackett, chairman of Ford Smart Mobility LLC, according to the The Ford Motor Company Media Center. “At the same time, by expanding our business model to include new forms of transportation – from bikes to dynamic shuttles and more – we are introducing new customers to Ford and creating new revenue and profit opportunities for the future.”
Ford’s first city of interest is San Francisco. On September 9, 2016, Ford announced its intention to acquire Chariot, a crowd-sourced shuttle service in the area. Additionally, Ford is collaborating with Motivate – a San Francisco bike-sharing company – to expand transportation options.
For more than 10 years, Ford Motor Company has been one of the industry leaders in autonomous vehicle innovation. So it comes as no surprise that Ford announced a collaboration with the University of Michigan to further research and development of new autonomy technology.
This first-ever collaboration will eventually lead to a new robotics lab opening in 2020 on the Ann Arbor campus, with state-of-the-art technology available. As the first step toward this goal, Ford is moving 12 researchers into the North Campus Research Complex by the end of 2016 so that they can get started.
Ford Motor Company invests in these technologies because this is the path society is heading toward – a world of autonomous cars and less invasive mobility across the globe. The robotics laboratory that is in the works will have plenty of space for machines to drive, walk fly and swim. In addition to labs, the 140,000 square foot building will contain classrooms and offices for both staff and professors, in order further the education of future researchers and innovators.
“Ford engineers and researchers will be working shoulder-to-shoulder with U-M faculty and students to test and learn about autonomous vehicle technology and innovation,” says Mark Fields, Ford’s president and CEO, according to the Ford Motor Company Media Center. “We are aiming to show the world what we can achieve when leaders in business and academia work together to make people’s lives better.”
We live in a fast-paced world of instant gratification and automatic responses.
Unfortunately, the human response time isn’t always up to par with the milliseconds it takes for our surroundings to change. Enter the autonomous vehicle. Through the use of technologies such as radar, GPS and computer vision, these robotic vehicles have the ability to provide instantaneous response to their environment absent of driver input, with the potential to make road travel much safer.
Ford Motor Company continues to aggressively pursue technological advances in the area of vehicle autonomy. In fact, Ford intends to have a fully autonomous, SAE-defined, level 4-capable commercial vehicle operating by 2021. Designed specifically for ride-sharing services, this advancement in Ford technology will navigate automatically without the need for a steering wheel, acceleration pedal or brake pedals.
Ford recognizes that the need for a economical ride-sharing service is continuing to increase. By comparison, owning a vehicle equates to a cost of $0.70 – $1.50 per mile, while ride-hailing and taxi services can be two to four times more. However, Ford anticipates that an autonomous commercial vehicle for the purposes of ride-sharing should average users about one dollar per mile (on par with vehicle ownership), paving the way of the future through convenience, easing road congestion, and improved safety.