Ford PHEV Vans In Europe To Get Geofence Module In Autumn 2020
Until all cars are zero-emission, geofence might be an important solution for PHEVs.
Ford confirmed that its two European plug-in hybrids, the Ford Transit Custom Plug-in Hybrid commercial van and its passenger version – Ford Tourneo Custom Plug-in Hybrid, will be equipped with a geofence module to automatically switch to electric drive mode whenever they enter predefined areas, using live location data.
The new feature will be available from Autumn 2020 for both new models as well as a retrofit to vehicles produced earlier.
Ford Tourneo Custom Hybrid Plug-in Ford Transit Custom PHEV
Ford Transit Custom PHEV
The main benefit of geofence is a better utilization of 13.6 kWh battery and limited all-electric range to areas where zero-emissions is required or most important like city centers (congestion and low-emission zones), school and play areas.
Some of those predefined areas will be provided by the manufacturer, we guess, while the fleet operators will be able to modify/add their own custom “green zones”.
Information about the use of EV mode will be securely recorded:
“The Geofence module in the Transit PHEV records information about electric-only operation within geofenced areas. The encrypted data could then be securely shared with local authorities to confirm compliance with low-emission zone regulations and vehicle charging schemes.”
The switch to EV mode will be possible only if the battery state of charge is high enough, and if the battery is depleted, or if the vehicle will leave the zone, it will switch to “the most appropriate drive mode.” In other words, it will return to operating as a series-hybrid.
Of course, the question is whether the driver will have to pay a fine for switching from EV to hybrid mode inside the zero-emission zone?
“Low-emission zones are increasingly common across Europe as a way for cities to better manage the environmental impact of vehicles in urban areas. In the first six months of the London Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ), levels of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) – one of the most harmful pollutants from vehicles – were found to have been reduced by almost 30 per cent.”