Anyone who’s spent a lot of time living with a battery electric vehicle knows that it’s a pain to reach your local plug-in station only to find that it’s gone bad and you can’t charge. It doesn’t happen as often as it used to be, but even when it does, it’s a huge hassle and a huge inconvenience. Ford wants to make that pain a thing of the past by sending out Charge Angels — employees who lug around in equipmentSUV, testing and fixing broken chargers, wherever they are.
The program is expected to begin later this year, said Darren Palmer, general manager of Ford’s BEV. Automotive News earlier this week, but details – including how many “angels” will be deployed and where – are still being worked out. Charge Angels will find and fix individual chargers that customers, connected vehicles or social media report as problematic.
“All they would do all day is to go and see where they failed and why,” Palmer said. “It’s a guardian angel taking care of you when you don’t even know you need it.”
When today’s customers reach for the charging station in their Mach-E and find that an individual plug is faulty, it’s easy enough to simply move to another location. But, he, which should be launched next year, will bring with it a whole new breed of EV customers with trailers and heavy loads in tow. It won’t be that easy for them to reposition two or three times to find a working plug. Ford expects its Charge Angels to whip up its FordPass charging network — an amalgamation of partner stations on Electrify America, Greenlots, ChargePoint and other networks — into tip-top shape, ensuring it’s more than expected at first. More plugs work. try.
So, if there’s an EV charger problem in your area and no one else can help… maybe you can call Ford’s Charge Angels sometime next year.