The Ford Motor Company is looking into blockchain technology and geofencing to accurately track the number of “green miles” driven by its energy-efficient vehicles.
Analyzing real-world benefits of energy-efficient vehicles
On Oct. 15, Ford announced that it is expanding its European plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) pilot project to Cologne in Germany. The United States car manufacturer aims to analyze the real-world benefits of these energy-efficient vehicles for the environment, commercial vehicle owners and operators.
The pilot, which is also conducting tests on the streets of London and Valencia, will put nine Ford Transit Custom Plug-In Hybrid vans and one Tourneo Custom Plug-In Hybrid people-mover to the test in a variety of real‑world use cases.
By recording all the metadata on the blockchain, the car company hopes to optimize the environmental benefits of its fleet of PHEV vehicles. Ford Europe director Mark Harvey said:
“Ford is committed to delivering new, more environmentally sustainable vehicles that can help address the mobility challenges our cities face. [...] The plug-in hybrid electric vehicle trials with our partners in the City of Cologne build upon our ongoing electrification programmes elsewhere in Europe, and bring us all closer to meeting our combined urban air quality goals.”
Throughout Europe, cities are introducing low-emission zones in an attempt to tackle air quality challenges, making sure the most polluting vehicles do not enter the city. Ford hopes this geofencing and blockchain technology pilot might help cities to implement and administer these zones. Ford-Werke GmbH chairman Gunnar Herrmann said:
“The blockchain technology we are testing here in Cologne enables secure, tamper-proof tracking and logging of vehicle emissions records, which makes it ideal for the PHEV pilot. Security, trust and transparency of emissions data are of paramount importance to all stakeholders in this project, and are key for our vision of cleaner air in the city.”
Ford testing blockchain payments in cars
Cointelegraph previously reported that Ford, together with BMW, General Motors, Renault and Honda, will start testing a blockchain car identification and payment system next month in the United States.
The partnership between the five major automakers aims to test the vehicle ID system developed under the Mobility Open Blockchain Initiative. As part of the project, cars are assigned digital IDs linked to ownership, service history and a wallet allowing the vehicle to automatically pay fees without specialized hardware.