Ford European Research & Innovation Center, Aachen, Germany, and the Technology and Innovation Management Institute of RWTH Aachen University will launch the Personal Mobility Experience Innovation project, this month as part of Ford Smart Mobility. The project will support innovation in connectivity, mobility, autonomous vehicles, customer experience and big data.
They will research personal mobility issues and societal challenges such as traffic congestion and environmental issues. Ford has an open SYNC app that won a Tech CARS Award for best integration of smartphones.
Ford also supports the U.K. Autodrive to research how driverless and connected cars can be integrated into everyday life.
The Personal Mobility Experience Innovation will partner experts from Ford and the university to study business models from a range of industries such as Apple and Amazon to learn how they may be used by the automotive industry for things like car-sharing, customization and expansion.
The researchers will look into four megatrends– urbanization, growth of middle class, gridlock, air quality and changes in customer attitudes.
Ford contributions to the U.K. government-sponsored U.K. Autodrive initiative will include working with others to study cars, interrogation into life styles and two prototype cars with vehicle-to-vehicle communication test in a public transport system.
A fleet of fully autonomous Ford Fusion Hybrid research vehicles is is being developed and tested.