Electric Vehicles

New FordPass Charging Network has 12,000 stations and 35,000 plugs

Customers can use the FordPass app to locate a charging station near them or their destination.

Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company

Ford Motor Company is building out its electric charging network ahead of the debut of its Mustang-inspired all-electric crossover. As part of the plan, Ford is offering customers access to 12,000 stations and 35,000 plugs, the most available access of any automaker.

This announcement comes on the heels of new that Ford will make FordPass remote features complementary.

FordPass users will be able to utilize the FordPass app to find an available Ford Connected Charge Station. The stations include those with DC fast charging capability. The 48-amp Ford Connected Charge Station can fully power a vehicle overnight while the owners sleeps, adding around 32 miles of range per charging hour to the battery.

Ford Charging home plug outlet mounted Ford is partnering with Amazon to install home charging networks for customers.Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company

"Among people who already own or want to purchase electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids, 48 percent say that a lack of charging stations is one of their main concerns," said Ted Cannis, Ford director of global electrification. "By offering industry-leading charging access we are dismantling those barriers, allowing more customers to confidently enjoy the benefits of owning an electric vehicle."

Ford is working with Greenlots, a Shell Group company, to bring together multiple charging providers to develop the network. Drivers will be able to identify charging stations and pay for charging through their vehicle's infotainment screen.

Every new Ford EV will come with a Ford Mobile Charger that can be used on Level 2 (240-volt) outlets and add 22 miles per charging hour to the vehicle. Using as standard Level 1 (120-volt) plug, buyers add an average of three miles per charging hour.

Ford has partnered with Amazon Home Services to offer home installation. When customers choose the Ford Connected Charge Station option, they will be able to see upfront pricing estimates and schedule a licensed and vetted electrician online.

Ford is giving EV buying customers two years of complimentary FordPass Charging Network access.

The FordPass app also allows customers to set charging schedules and alerts at home, and pre-condition their vehicle before they drive. FordPass Power My Trip helps drivers plan their route based on charge needs and charging points.

The FordPass app is currently available in the Google Play and Apple stores.

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Discontinued sedan

Volkswagen nixing Passat after 2022 model year

Racing Green Metallic is one of four exclusive colors for the car.

Volkswagen

After five decades on sale in the U.S., Volkswagen is pulling the plug on the midsize Passat. The explosion of SUVs' popularity and the need to shift production power to electric vehicles are behind the decision, which will take place after the 2022 model year. The cars have been built at the automaker's Chattanooga, TN plant since 2011, but the facility is being repurposed as VW's North American hub for electric vehicle assembly.

Volkswagen is giving the car one last hurrah, however, in the form of the Passat Limited Edition. The car features 18-inch wheels, LED headlights with an Advanced Front Lighting System, and an easy-open trunk. Inside, the cars come with sport seats wrapped in Vienna leather, memory seating, a Fender Premium Audio System, parking assistance, and parking sensors.


2022 Volkswagen Passat Limited Edition Each car gets a special model tag with its limited production number.Volkswagen


Only 1,973 of the cars will be built, and it will only be sold in four colors, each with its own limited production numbers that have special meaning for the Passat:

  • Aurora Red Metallic with Titan Black interior: 411 units to represent the original vehicle production code
  • Racing Green Metallic with Mauro Brown interior: 423 units to commemorate the Chattanooga 423 area code
  • Pure white with Mauro Brown interior: 524 units to signify the Chattanooga plant's May 24 opening date
  • Platinum Great Metallic with Titan Black interior: 615 units to signify six generations of imported Passats, one generation assembled in Chattanooga, and five decades of U.S. sales

Pricing for the 2022 Passat starts at $31,290, which includes a $995 destination fee. Adding Aurora Red Metallic drives the price up by an additional $395. Each car will receive a special number plate to designate its place in the limited production run.


2022 Volkswagen Passat Limited Edition The Passat Limited Edition gets several upscale features. Volkswagen

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Electric vehicle features

The VW ID.4 sounds futuristic

The ID.4 is VW's first electric crossover in the U.S.

VW

The Volkswagen ID.4 is finally here. The electric crossover offers compelling features, decent all-electric range, and a reasonable price. On top of all that, Volkswagen focused heavily on the electric experience with the ID.4, down to the sounds it makes in everyday operation.

Where many automakers seek to humanize electric vehicles with familiar gas engine sounds, Volkswagen hasn't bothered with any of that. Instead, the automaker's ID.4 electric crossover features several sounds that embrace the EV's place in the future of transportation.

On startup, drivers are greeted with a sound that Volkswagen says will alert them that the vehicle is ready to go. It's not at all unlike the flying saucer sounds heard in sci-fi movies decades ago, but it's a nice reminder of the ID.4's future-forward drivetrain.



In motion, VW gave the ID.4 what is known as an Acoustic Vehicle Alerting System, which helps alert people to the presence of a moving electric vehicle. Since the drivetrain doesn't make the same noises that a gas engine does, EVs can move almost silently at low speeds, so it's important to have some kind of warning sound.

Even the turn signal sounds received scrutiny in the ID.4's design, and while they're still fairly traditional, the sounds are subtle and pleasing overall. Beyond that, VW says it developed a library of sounds for typical vehicle control buttons and other functions that are exclusive to its electric vehicles. The goal, according to the automaker, is that the sound aligns with the vehicles' character, visual design, and features, and that people will be able to recognize a VW EV by its unique sound.

The ID.4 is just the first of several EVs that Volkswagen plans to release here in the United States. Larger family vehicles are on the horizon, and we may even see an electric revival of the legendary VW bus.

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