Ford Focus Electric teaser pic

"Conventional" 2012 Ford Focus Sedan

Ford SYNC AppLink
Ford's SYNC system continues to be a hit with customers

The SYNC system, which is powered by Microsoft software, has been a huge hit for Ford. Back in May 2009, the company announced that it had delivered its one-millionth vehicle equipped with SYNC. That one-millionth vehicle, a blue Ford Fusion Hybrid went to none other than boisterous Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer. 

This week, Ford is announcing that it has crossed the three million mark with SYNC installations. The Dearborn, Michigan-based company also noted that SYNC, which is a $395 option, has a take rate of roughly 80 percent. Ford also tossed around some other statistics including the fact that 80 percent of SYNC users would recommend the option to others and nearly 70 percent of SYNC users regularly use the voice recognition capabilities of the system. 

“Not only is it proving to differentiate our products from the competition, SYNC is becoming a key point of satisfaction," said Ken Czubay, Ford's vice president of U.S. Marketing, Sales and Service. 

“When we introduced SYNC, we were committed to making voice recognition a highly useful tool for the driver, and this research confirms we’re on track,” added Ford's Jim Buczkowski, Ford Electronics and Electrical Systems Engineering, Research and Advanced Engineering Director. “Ford remains committed to being the company that will continue to raise the bar on voice recognition as the primary user interface – giving customers the connectivity they want while helping them keep their eyes on the road and hands on the wheel.” 

Late last month, Ford announced the addition of SYNC AppLink to the subcompact Ford Fiesta. SYNC AppLink allows drivers to control their smartphones via voice commands and will soon be expanded to additional Ford/Lincoln vehicles.

In other Ford news, the company has announced that it will show the Ford Focus EV and it even posted a teaser picture of the vehicle on Facebook. As its name implies, the Focus EV ditches the gasoline powertrain for an electric motor and a generous lithium-ion battery pack. Ford says that the vehicle will have a driving range of 100 miles.

Nissan's all-electric Leaf is priced at around $32,000 before a $7,500 tax credit, so it should be interesting to see how Ford prices its Focus EV. Production for the vehicle is scheduled to gear up later this year.

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