A growing number of fleet managers have discovered that Ford Motor Co.’s MyKey technology is a valuable tool that promotes driver safety -- even though MyKey was originally designed to encourage safe teen driving habits.
MyKey debuted as standard equipment on the 2010 Ford Focus and is now standard on nearly all Ford and Lincoln models.
Joe Dougherty, president of Kentucky-based Louisville Paving Co., said 30 of his company’s vehicles are now equipped with MyKey. The system encourages safer driving practices among employees.
A key can be programmed to limit the vehicle’s top speed and audio volume, and to encourage safety belt use. The technology also routes incoming calls directly to voicemail on paired phones.
Louisville Paving Co., which the Dougherty family launched in 1949, is a full-service contractor involved in highway and heavy construction. Dougherty plans to purchase more Ford vehicles with MyKey because he wants his employees to focus on driving when they're behind the wheel.
“With us, safety is the No. 1 priority,” said Dougherty. “These job sites can be high-risk situations if drivers are distracted by the radio, phone calls or texts.”
One of the most recent applications of MyKey technology is the 2014 Ford Transit Connect, which has become popular with businesses for its fuel efficiency and configuration options.
“MyKey has been a great tool for fleet managers, giving them a technology that encourages good driving habits for their employees,” said Megan Gillam, commercial vehicles brand and fleet communications manager for Ford Motor Co. “Many companies have safe driving guidelines for fleet vehicles, and MyKey serves as a reinforcement of some of those basic rules.”
Louisville Paving Co. leases its fleet vehicles from Enterprise Fleet Management, which markets MyKey as a useful safety tool.
“The versatility of MyKey for fleet owners makes it a great feature for our customers,” said Kevin Kelley, assistant vice president of business development at Enterprise Fleet Management. “The feedback from our customers who select it as a feature has been positive, with several stating they’d like to have it added in future orders.”
Some of the features and settings on MyKey include the ability to:
- Limit vehicle top speed to 80 mph, or lower on some models
- Issue a warning when the vehicle is at or within 5 mph of reaching the preset maximum speed
- Limit the vehicle’s entertainment system audio to 45 percent of maximum volume
- Sound a chime and mute the audio system until safety belts are buckled
- Route incoming calls directly to voicemail
- Issue an additional low-fuel warning when the fuel tank is one-eighth full.