Ford will be installing GE EV charging stations at its facilities all across the U.S.
Ford Motor Company announced it will supply vehicle charging stations at Ford facilities nationwide in conjunction with GE, beginning with facilities in and around its headquarters.
Ford said the announcement continues the innovative cooperation begun more than 100 years ago between Henry Ford and Thomas Edison, co-founder of GE.
This month, Ford will begin installing GE WattStation charging stations across its North American campuses. The company said the goal is to develop a workplace charging network at nearly every Ford facility in the United States and Canada.
“Ford’s commitment to sustainability extends beyond our fuel-efficient vehicles to include our daily workplace,” said Mike Tinskey, Ford director of vehicle electrification and infrastructure. “We know that a growing electrified vehicle infrastructure is key to making plug-in vehicles a viable option for more consumers. Ford is committed to doing its part to help develop that infrastructure.”
Ford explained with the new charging network, Ford employees commuting to their jobs from up to 21 miles away in plug-in hybrid vehicles – Fusion Energi and C-MAX Energi – may be able to drive entirely on electric power to and from work. Fusion Energi and C-MAX Energi have an EPA-estimated MPG ratings 44 city, 41 highway and 43 combined and have an EPA-estimated range of 21 miles electric. Drivers of the electric-only Focus Electric, which has an EPA-estimated range of 76 miles on a full charge, will have even more gas-free commuting potential.
Ford plans to install electric vehicle charging stations at more than 60 of its offices, product development campuses and manufacturing facilities.
Installation will begin at Ford’s southeast Michigan facilities and roll out across other facilities throughout 2014.
Ford stated throughout North America, the number of charging stations – both public and residential – is growing rapidly. In 2009, there were 3,000 known public charge stations. Today, there are more than 20,000.
The Ford charging service will be free to employees for the first four hours of charging each day. By offering free charging, Ford is trying to encourage charging station sharing, enabling twice as many employees to charge at work for free.
Ford added it is also asking employees to use the MyFord Mobile smartphone app to collect driving and charging information to help the company understand driving patterns and potentially influence future product design. Ford estimates it will cost about 50 cents to fully charge each vehicle.
Ford said its WattStation charging station installation differs from other workplace charging installations in that the units will be networked together. As a result, the company will be able to gather comprehensive information on electrified vehicle use, such as the number of hours vehicles are charging and the amount of carbon dioxide reduced. It can then use actual station data to plan for additional station installations.