Unlikely partners come together to make pizza delivery better

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Ford Domino’s pizza delivery partnership

Pizza is truly a wonder-food. It can be almost any flavor imaginable and better yet, it can often be delivered directly to your front door. Ford Motor Company and Domino’s Pizza may seem like odd partners. One is a world leader in everything automotive and the other delivers pizza. How could these two companies possibly work together? Well, Ford is making great strides in developing autonomous vehicles and Domino’s has continually revolutionized the food delivery game. The two companies are teaming up to develop the world’s first self-driving delivery vehicle. Obviously, taking the delivery driver out of the car presents some problems. Testing for the self-driving delivery vehicle is slated to begin shortly in Michigan.

READ MORE: How do I jump start a Ford C-Max?

“As we increase our understanding of the business opportunity for self-driving vehicles to support the movement of people and goods, we’re pleased to have Domino’s join us in this important part of the development process,” Sherif Marakby, Ford vice president, Autonomous and Electric Vehicles said in a press release. “As a company focused on the customer experience, Domino’s shares our vision for a future enabled by smart vehicles in a smart environment that enhance people’s lives.”

Will I have to tip an autonomous pizza delivery car?

There are still a few hurdles that will need to be cleared before a self-driving car pulls up to a customer’s house and drops off a freshly baked pizza and some wings. The actual technology for allowing vehicles to drive themselves is very close to being ready for real-world applications. Questions still lie in how will customers react to essentially having a four-wheeled drone drop off their dinner. During the initial testing phase, randomly selected customers in the Ann Arbor, Michigan area will get their pizza from a self-driving Ford Fusion Hybrid, staffed with engineers and researchers from Ford. This will allow both companies to see how people are going to react to the change.

Domino's and Ford working together to make self-driving delivery cars
Customers will get a special code to access their order from the self-driving car
 

“We’re interested to learn what people think about this type of delivery,” Russell Weiner, president of Domino’s USA said. “The majority of our questions are about the last 50 feet of the delivery experience. For instance, how will customers react to coming outside to get their food? We need to make sure the interface is clear and simple. We need to understand if a customer’s experience is different if the car is parked in the driveway versus next to the curb. All of our testing research is focused on our goal to someday make deliveries with self-driving vehicles as seamless and customer-friendly as possible.”

In addition to having highly educated engineers basically moonlight as pizza delivery drivers, more technical testing will occur as a specially built outdoor laboratory at the University of Michigan.

If you’d like to see what the latest crop of Ford cars, trucks and SUVs can do for you, contact a Heritage Ford sales professional today.
 

Originally posted 09/05/2017

 
Categories: News, Tech Talk

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