Ford expands telematics offerings to all makes

by Today's Trucking

Ford Telematics offerings are expanding beyond the OEM’s familiar blue oval to include all vehicle makes and models, regardless of nameplate.

The expanded access comes through a plug-in device that connects to each vehicle through a wiring harness, leaving the OBD II port available for other uses. And the functionality comes as part of the regular subscription cost.

(Illustration: Ford)

This builds on a modem kit that was released last year to support pre-2020 Ford vehicles within a fleet.

“By supporting all makes and models, expanding the capabilities of Ford Telematics and providing complimentary management tools, we’re arming fleet managers with the knowledge they need to maintain uptime and increase productivity across their fleet,” said Alex Purdy, director of operations – enterprise connectivity.

Through Ford Telematics, fleet managers can analyze the related data through a single, updated dashboard.

More than vehicles

The insights are not limited to vehicles alone. A new driver behavior dashboard and individual driver scores will offer insights into those behind the wheel.

Available details include alerts about harsh braking or acceleration, speeding above posted limits or fleet thresholds, seatbelt use, and idling time.

Severe incident notifications are initiated when air bags are triggered. Emails and in-app alerts identify the involved driver, crash location and time. And vehicle misuse notifications let managers know if equipment is being inappropriately used during off hours.

It isn’t the only way telematics offerings are expanding.

Ford is also highlighting dashboards available for electric vehicles, offering insights into details such as charging reports and pre-conditioning to optimize battery efficiency.

Beginning in the second quarter of this year, the new Ford Telematics Essentials will offer details about vehicle health, touching on such things as odometer readings, diagnostic trouble code and information around oil life, engine hours, and recalls. And just months after that, fleets will also be able to use the service to track and plan maintenance or repairs with local dealers.

The system will support more than 3,800 trouble codes.

Over-the-air updates will be available with the 2022 F-150 as well.

Said Purdy: “Knowledge is power.”

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