In an exclusive interview with Power TV and covered in TeslaMag in French, Ford France’s President, Louis-Carl Vignon, confirmed that Ford’s new all-electric Mustang Mach-E will have a range of 600 km, according to the WLTP testing system. Additionally, Ford has some major plans for Europe, including 100% vehicle electrification by 2025.
Vignon pointed out that Ford is betting on the new EV to become a new icon for the American brand — one of high-performance electric mobility. Vignon has spent 30 years in the automotive industry with Ford, Saab, GM, and even Volkswagen as the head of Seat in Spain. As he returns to Ford, he’s excited that the brand created by Henry Ford is working hard to secure its spot in the electrification movement.
Tesla Mag asked how Ford is positioned in the development of electric mobility. Vignon responded by pointing out that since Ford unveiled its investment of $11 billion over 5 years, 18 new electrified vehicles have arrived on the French market. He spoke of the new Ford Mustang Mach-E as an iconic vehicle and touched upon how inspiring it is. “It’s both a car and an ecosystem: it has 600km of autonomy and it is encircled with artificial intelligence, so that the use is as pleasant and relevant as possible, according to the tastes and wishes of the owner.”
Vignon stressed the importance of the electrification ecosystem to address long distances — being able to recharge on the go, and also at home or work. He spoke of Ford Pass, which offers 50,000 terminals in Europe for those charging on the go. Vignon also stated that Ford will invest in fast-charging infrastructure in conjunction with Ionity at service stations, for both full EVs like the Mustang Mach-E and plugin hybrids.
Regarding autonomy, Vignon believes that Ford is far ahead. “At the end of 2021, we were even supposed to have a chain of American supermarkets using a fleet of autonomous Ford vehicles to deliver to customers. But the coronavirus has delayed this operation, postponed to 2022.” He also noted that Volkswagen has joined Ford in its goals of autonomy, which he noted is more advanced in the US due to regulatory reasons. “Our partner for the software is a startup called Argo AI in which Ford has bet a billion dollars.”
Ford’s next goals in Europe include 50% of its vehicles being electrified by 2022 and 100% of them will be electrified by 2025 — both passenger vehicles and commercial vehicles. That doesn’t mean fully electric, of course, just partially electrified. “In this regard, we will soon be presenting the all-electric 2-ton Transit, which will be available at the end of next year,” Vignon said.
One other takeaway from this interview is that Ford sees the value of electrification. “Electrification is a major issue in the automotive industry and at Ford because of standards that change depending on the country, but also for the planet, because of global warming. The technological breakthrough brought by the EV opens up the field of possibilities because the entire connection part is linked,” Vignon said. He also spoke more about autonomous driving and being able to “make a trip without having to put our hands on the steering wheel.”