Ford first to load driver-connect software via Wi-Fi on the assembly line

  • 07-Sep-2010 10:09 EDT
11EdgeWiFiOakville03 - MCM size.jpg

The all-new 2011 Ford Edge and Lincoln MKX with MyFord Touch receive SYNC software downloads via Wi-Fi access points on the assembly line at the Oakville, Ontario, assembly plant.

Ford is the first automaker to use Wi-Fi provisioning on the assembly line to wirelessly equip driver-connect software to vehicles as they are being built, reducing manufacturing complexity and saving cost. “Using wireless software installation via Wi-Fi, we can stock just one type of SYNC module powering MyFord Touch and loaded with a basic software package,” said Sukhwinder Wadhwa, SYNC Global Platform Manager. “We eliminate around 90 unique part numbers, each of which would have to be updated every time a change is made. This system really boosts quality control.” Earlier in the year, Ford announced that the next-generation SYNC system that powers MyFord Touch would feature a built-in Wi-Fi receiver. Ford’s Oakville, Ontario, plant that produces the all-new 2011 Ford Edge and Lincoln MKX will be the first to feature wireless access points for infotainment software installation. Ford is also targeting a Chicago assembly plant, which is building the all-new 2011 Ford Explorer, for Wi-Fi installation capabilities. Plant locations throughout the world that will support the 2012 Ford Focus launch will soon follow. The company says going wireless for software delivery addresses a number of manufacturing complexity and potential quality issues for Ford as more and more features and services are added to SYNC across multiple vehicle lines and continents.

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