Ford To Open Lab in Silicon Valley
DEARBORN, Mich.-Ford Motor Co. on Friday said it will open a research lab in Silicon Valley, where it hopes to scout out new technology and keep ahead of trends.
The company said it plans to open the lab near Stanford University in Palo Alto, Calif., in the first few months of this year. It will employ about 15 people, including some recruited locally and others who will rotate in from Ford's headquarters in Dearborn.
Ford Chief Technical Officer Paul Mascarenas said the company decided about a year ago that it needed a bigger presence in Silicon Valley.
"This is a very natural extension into one of the most innovative communities in the world," he said.
He said the lab will work on ways to better integrate phones and other personal devices into cars, as well as safety systems that alert drivers when they are approaching another car.
The lab will also solicit and test applications from independent programmers. One app Ford is currently studying would improve weather reporting by transmitting signals when a car's rain-sensing wipers are triggered.
Mr. Mascarenas said the lab will also study larger issues, including population growth in developing countries like China and India, and how best to handle traffic in those countries.
The lab will work with Ford headquarters as well as its design studio in Southern California and its office at Microsoft Corp. in Washington. Microsoft and Ford jointly developed Ford's Sync voice-activated entertainment system and My Ford Touch touch-screen dashboard.
But Mr. Mascarenas said it is important that the lab be in Silicon Valley-not Dearborn-so employees feel free to experiment.
Ford joins several other auto makers that have similar offices in Silicon Valley, including General Motors Co., BMW AG and the Renault-Nissan alliance.
K. Venkatesh Prasad, a senior technical leader at Ford who will commute between Dearborn and the new office, said Ford considered opening a Silicon Valley office in the past but the technology wasn't ready. Now, he said, the Sync platform makes it easier and faster to reprogram a car and update it with new applications. Ford introduced Sync four years ago.
"The car is finally a platform," Mr. Prasad said.
THESE DAYS, THE BEST way to purchase a new car might be to skip the dealership and head online.
While the advantages might not seem obvious at first, auto experts agree that shoppers can save time and money by going online. Perhaps more important, the entire process is a lot more pleasant: No more wrestling with tough sales teams.
You can purchase new and used cars online. People who've purchased new/used models say it's remarkably easy. Our Internet sales department, These people make their commissions based on volume rather than price. They understand the importance of offering a fair price to move the sales process along quickly.
Those looking to purchase a new car online typically field multiple offers at a time a detail not lost on our dealership. We know that if we want your business, Lance Cunningham Ford must offer you a competitive price.
In addition to the sales price, you can work out all the smaller
details online as well, including aftermarket products ( extended
warranties) and financing.
We have the best salespeople in the business, and we look forward to serving you!!
Lance Cunningham Ford- http://www.lcford.com Call 1-888-719-3506
ONLINE SHOPPING MADE EASY WITH WORLDWIDE SHIPPING SERVICES AND UNMATCHED PRICES. ASK AN ONLINE AGENT FOR INSTANT ANSWERS USING LIVE CHAT. SERVICE AND PRICE IS HOW WE ARE ABLE TO BE YOUR DEALER WITH THE CLICK OF A BUTTON.