Ford Motor Co. is the latest automaker opening its vehicles’ trunks to Amazon.com., entering a partnership to enable delivery of packages directly to millions of Ford and Lincoln models.
Ford follows General Motors Co. and Volvo Cars in joining with the online retailing giant to offer Key by Amazon In-Car delivery service. Beginning April 30, the service will be available on 2017 and newer Ford vehicles and 2018 and newer Lincoln models equipped with a modem.
Using an Amazon app in conjunction with Ford or Lincoln apps, delivery drivers can unlock the car, place packages in the trunk or back seat and then relock the vehicle. It is aimed at addressing consumer concerns about the security of packages left unprotected on front porches and provides another opening for Ford as it wades into the world of e-commerce.
The automaker is seeking to earn income from services beamed into vehicles even as it overhauls operations to prepare for a future of electric and self-driving cars. Besides the Amazon deal, Ford has formed partnerships with mobile car washes ordered off the FordPass and LincolnWay apps to clean cars on the spot with roving crews.
Ford also is in discussion with other retailers and grocery chains to expand delivery services to the car, said Lorin Kennedy, who leads the automaker’s FordPass unit. “I consider us open for business,” Kennedy said. “With Amazon and the mobile washes as our first partners, we’re really ready to start bringing a lot more services to customers so they see the value of having a connected vehicle.”