While many automakers have scrapped production of sprinter vans throughout the US, Ford is
forging ahead with innovative ways on keeping commercial vans operational and van drivers up
to date on their vehicle’s performance. The automaker is pushing innovative use of data
generated by their vans and trucks in order to help attract more European and US commercial
vehicle and Ford truck sales.
National outlet Reuters recently visited Ford’s United Kingdom headquarters in Dunton, east of
London. While there, Reuters was able to observe the collection of real-time data on vehicle
performance. That data reflected the performance of over 114,000 vans throughout Britain that
were covered by the FORDLiive monthly subscription service. The service is able to track over
4,000 data points and uses modems that are installed in commercial vans built in 2019 and
The FORDLiive monthly subscription service is a truly innovative tool that allows members to
have a full picture of their vehicle’s performance. The monthly subscription service covers
everything from engine health to your oil filter status to the status of your brake pad wear. This
innovative tech allows drivers to stay up to date with their commercial van maintenance and
remedy issues that are costly when caught early but expensive if service is not given in a timely
Throughout the UK, Ford has connected all of its UK Ford car dealers to the system. In doing
so, the car dealers and automaker can track how many vehicles are in service, how many are
coming up for service, and how many are out of service.
The system which launched in 2021 is already hitting its target goals. Hans Schep, the
European head of Ford’s Commercial vehicle business, Ford Pro, shared with Reuters that with
the help of this innovative technology, the automaker has already seen vehicle “up time”
increase to 60%. For business owners, this tool proves to be the future of cost savings and
efficient business. Ford estimates that when commercial vans throughout the UK are not in use,
the cost can be as much as $724 per day per van.
Ford rolled out their subscription service in Great Britain and after finding it to be a success, the
automaker is getting ready to roll out the service in mainland Europe and the US. Schep touts
the efficiency of the software, adding that the insight it provides has allowed it to be a “game
changer” in the world of commercial van operations.
Ford has recognized the value of being able to support businesses in efficient operation,
especially when it comes to their transportation needs. FORDLiive has proven to be beneficial
so much so that the automaker has focused more on its Ford Pro business model throughout
Europe instead of there mass-market passenger cars which tend to have a lower margin
throughout the continent.
As the automotive landscape goes electric, Ford is excited about the potential of access to
many more data points. This is especially exciting considering that many businesses are
hesitant to make the lead to electric. Having software that gives a company insight into the
metrics and overall health of their vehicle could help push business owners to make the leap
into the electric space.
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