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Ford to launch rival to Fiat EcoDrive

Date: 21 December 2009

Ford is planning to launch a system in early in 2010 to help motorists improve their economy driving skills.

The system is similar to Fiat's EcoDrive, which allows drivers to analyse their driving behaviour using a USB stick and downloadable software. This software reports how economic the driver has been and offers tips on how to improve. However, Ford's, yet-to-be-named system will be dealer-based, according to head of marketing Mark Simpson, and differs from Fiat's in that customers will have to return to the dealer to have their driving data analysed.

"The system will analyse the driver's technique; drivers will then go back to the dealer to have the results interpreted. Dealers will be trained on how to do this," explained Simpson.

Simpson said the eco-system will be available retrospectively because it interrogates the engine management chip: "We will be able to offer this on any car built in the past six years."

A final cost of the system has yet to be announced, with Simpson adding only: "There will be a modest charge for the installation of the kit."