Ford Establishes a Research and Innovation Unit in Palo Alto


Published Date : Jan 23, 2015

The Ford Motor Company will soon be establishing an expanded Research and Innovation Center in Palo Alto. The company has plans of employing 125 people in the new building and its focus will essentially be on future technology in the areas of human-machine interface, autonomous driving, big data, car connectivity, and smart mobility. Few of the center’s employees are expected to come from Ford’s headquarters in Michigan, however, a major part of the team will be new recruits who will be specializing in advanced technology. 

According to a former engineer at Apple with experience in aerospace, consumer electronics, automotive, and semiconductor manufacturing, and he will be leading the new team of Ford in Palo Alto. With the establishment of the Ford Research and Innovation Center, Ford will acquire one of the biggest automotive research teams in Silicon Valley. Mark Fields, the CEO and president of Ford Motors, has recognized the immediate and rapid changes taking place in personal transportation that are mainly driven by technology, and he anticipates that Ford will be an integral part of this latest evolution. He also expressed that Ford as an auto company is driven by and governed by innovation. 

A group of senior officials at Ford Motors also laid stress on greater synergy between automobiles and technology, and also on the importance of the need for concerns like Ford Motors to interact and get in touch with some of the high tech entities of Silicon Valley. For instance there will soon be collaboration between Ford and Stanford University for developing autonomous vehicle technology. Ford fortified Stanford University’s engineering program with its ongoing Fusion autonomous test vehicle for testing algorithms that pertain to prediction and planning in driverless vehicles.