Ford's MyFord Mobile app (Photo : Ford Motor Company)
Ford has developed an app to help drivers of its electric and hybrid plug-ins stay charged.
The MyFord Mobile app can be used for the Ford Focus Electric, and will be available for the C-MAX Energi and Fusion Energi plug-in hybrids when those vehicles become available.
The app allows drivers to locate power stations via a MapQuest-powered locator, manage charging remotely, view current battery levels, and plan routes.
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Ford stresses that charging stations will become easier and easier to find, as they crop up frequently. Businesses now offering chargers include McDonald's, Starbucks, Whole Foods, Walgreens, Target, Cracker Barrel, and Walmart.
Ford cites US Department of Energy numbers that say that there are now 9,445 public charging stations nationwide, a sharp increase from the 2,500 charging stations in existence at the end of 2009.
The app allows for real-time updating of the directory of charging stations so that customers can rest assured they are looking at a list of functioning stations.
"As more stations join the grid, MyFord Mobile users will be among the first to know because information about charger locations is constantly being culled from various sources to provide the most up-to-date data," Mike Tinskey, Ford's manager of Vehicle Electrification and Infrastructure, said in a statement.
"I cannot recall another time in our history when there was so much momentum and resources around an energy shift for transportation," he said. "Not only are these charge stations a boost for consumers thinking about a plug-in hybrid vehicle, but they also provide a glimpse of how things will likely take shape in the future."