Ford Launches New Shuttle Bus Service App

Ford Launches New Shuttle Bus Service App

A trial of a Ford-operated, commuter ride-share service app was approved for launch in London this past January.

Chariot, the business providing the ride share services through the app, will allow passengers to pay a premium over a regular bus fare price for pre-booked trips running along four routes.

As shared mobility services reach all-time popularity levels, vehicle manufacturers such as Ford are turning away from a traditional industry platform and toward a more user-friendly model.

The ride-share service is part of an effort to ramp up what Ford calls their microtransit plan. The use of the Chariot app is intended to work in cooperation with London’s already established public transportation system in order to offer “in-app ride booking for first and last-mile commuting solutions, and the potential to reach underserved areas,” according to a spokesperson from Ford.

Chariot is Europe’s first commuter shuttle service, with 14 minibuses slated to operate in bus lanes which will run along designated routes. These routes will generally be located south of Thames and in areas without tube stations like Battersea.

Following the release of news, Transport for London has stated that they plan to work with other technology companies to provide missing transportation links in the English territory. Ford joins the ranks of other vehicle manufacturers who are hopping on the experimental bus servicing trend like BMW, who has sponsored the Drive Now car sharing program.

Ford is currently operating the Chariot app from San Francisco, New York, Austin, Seattle, and the newest city addition, Columbus, Ohio.

Northwest Bus Sales has been offering customers the greatest brands in the transportation industry for over 27 years. Regardless of whether you are interested in purchasing a trolley bus, shuttle bus, or highway coach, we can assure you that you will find a solution that works for you when you browse our selection of new or used buses for sale.

Trends in Public Transit across the Country for 2018

Former Tesla Employee Making Electric City Buses

2018 is the year of public transit’s revival, as cities nationwide increasingly look to limit congestion, cut back on car exhaust, and make their streets more enjoyable for everyone. With the push to go green, focusing new attention on public transit, especially in regards to buses, will be instrumental in future development.

The first major trend involves the experimentation of BRT, or what’s known as bus rapid transit. In Indianapolis, work will begin this year on a 13-mile rapid transit line which will run across the city. When done, buses are expected to pick up passengers from stops every ten minutes, providing an easy and reliable ride for thousands of people. Similar projects, including bus-only lanes, are popping up in cities nationwide, including Chicago and New York.

Next up is what everyone’s been talking about lately: self-driving cars. 2018 is expected to be the year when AVs (automated vehicles) make their splash onto the markets, and we finally start to see their potential impact on our daily lives take shape. In New York, GM will soon be piloting its Chevy Bolts on the city’s streets, with the hopes of launching a robo-taxi service soon. So it’s only a matter of time that cities start to experiment with self-driving buses.

The last trend to watch out in public transit for has to do with accessibility, and how we pay for our rides. Uber and other rideshares introduced us to paying with transportation by smartphone, and this is only the beginning of what’s possible with new technology. Many cities are looking into technology known as ‘Mobility as a Service’ technology (MaaS), or using your smartphone to pay for all public transit ride options available in an area. That means tickets will go by the wayside, and you’ll be able to use one app for everything—cab, bus, and even subway.

Convenience and innovation is what the future is all about, and Northwest Bus Sales plans to be there every step of the way. Take a look at our inventory of new and used buses for sale today.