• Jan 6th 2011 at 8:29AM
  • 11
Sync first showed up in 2007, when it was offered as a $395 option in the 2008 Ford Focus. Since then, the Sync system has gone on to find a home in nearly all of Ford and Lincoln's vehicles. The infotainment system has helped raise the average transaction price of Ford vehicle sales, and, after installing the three millionth system, there appear to be no signs of a Sync slowdown.

The customer has spoken and they want Sync. It comes standard on the Lincoln lineup but 80 percent of Ford customers spend the extra dough if Sync is available for their vehicle. As issues with distracted driving continue to rise to the forefront of safety discussions, customers will continue to gobble up products like the Sync system. If a driver is able to stay connected while keeping his or eyes on the road (or at least consumers believe that to be the case), it may not be long until Sync celebrates its 10 millionth unit sold.

[Source: Ford]
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-Ford SYNC®, the voice-activated in-car connectivity system is now installed in more than 3 million Ford Motor Company vehicles, since first introduced in late 2007
-Latest internal research shows that more than 80 percent of SYNC owners are likely to recommend the system to others, a 5 percentage point increase over last year's research
-More SYNC users also rely on its voice recognition system, with nearly 70 percent usage rate while driving – more than a 5 percentage point increase over previous year
-SYNC was introduced in 2007 and still maintains its introductory price as a $395 option for nearly all new-model Ford vehicles; SYNC is also standard equipment on Lincoln models

"Ford SYNC is clearly making a difference in our customer experience," said Ken Czubay, Ford vice president of U.S. Marketing, Sales and Service. "Not only is it proving to differentiate our products from the competition, SYNC is becoming a key point of satisfaction."

Ford SYNC was first available for the 2008 Ford Focus, with an option price of $395, in the fall of 2007 and quickly migrated across Ford's product lines. Today, SYNC is available on all Ford and Lincoln products, except those that are largely commercial or fleet use. The option price remains at $395 for most vehicles, but now includes several new standard features such as 911 Assist, Vehicle Health Report, and SYNC Services.

Customers buying Ford vehicles are treating SYNC as a must-have technology, purchasing the system, when available, nearly 80 percent of the time on current 2011 models – up about 4 percentage points compared to 2010 models. SYNC is standard across the Lincoln lineup.

And a larger number of these customers are speaking out about how much they like the system, with recent internal research indicating that more than 80 percent of SYNC users are likely to recommend the system to others, representing a 5 percentage point increase over the previous year's data.

Undeniably, the strong purchase power and customer satisfaction ratings of SYNC are bolstered by its industry-leading voice recognition system, a feature that is taking a stronghold in terms of what people want when it comes to in-car connectivity systems. In the internal research, nearly 70 percent of SYNC owners reported that they use the SYNC voice controls while driving – a 5-plus percentage point increase.

"When we introduced SYNC, we were committed to making voice recognition a highly useful tool for the driver, and this research confirms we're on track," said Jim Buczkowski, a Henry Ford Technical Fellow and director of Ford Electronics and Electrical Systems Engineering, Research and Advanced Engineering. "Ford remains committed to being the company that will continue to raise the bar on voice recognition as the primary user interface – giving customers the connectivity they want while helping them keep their eyes on the road and hands on the wheel."

According to the 2010 study "Staying Connected on the Go: A Look at In-Vehicle Smartphone Integration Systems" conducted by the Consumer Electronics Association, 55 percent of the fast-growing population of smartphone owners prefer voice commands as their primary in-car user interface.

With the introduction of MyFord Touch™ in 2010, Ford made the SYNC voice recognition system even faster, friendlier and easier to use with more direct, first level commands, quicker and easier entry and search and more recognized aliases. The improvements were designed to help drivers accomplish tasks hands-free using more natural speech patterns and fewer commands, enabling them to focus on the task of driving.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      No thanks, I'll just use my iPad.
        • 4 Years Ago
        LOL! You have got to be kidding me, right!?

        Alex: Hey, Invisible, would you like some ice cream?
        Incisible: No thanks, I just use my gloves.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Someone wrote recently to Motor Trend pointing out that todays cars have so much technology why can’t this technology tell the driver exactly what the problem is. Why do we have to go to the mechanic to read engine computer. Instead of an engine warning light why can’t a car tell exactly what the issue is, so the driver does not have to go to mechanic who finds the issue………makes up a few additional issues and charges you accordingly.

      If the car told the driver exactly what the problem is, there’s a good chance the driver could fix it himself in the first place. All programmers have to do is program at least 20 commands that car can recognize and alert the driver. Come on Ford, use SYNC for something good.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Pretty good points, Urch, but this functionality is already in use, not by Ford quite yet-soon I presume-but OnStar(Gen2)has capability for remote diagnostics. The problem is all it can tell you what the trouble code is and what system is affected. If you have had any experience with diagnostics, the trouble code is only a starting point for the technician to begin fault tracing to get to the core of what is causing the MIL or other lamp to illuminate.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Sea Urchin

        Apparently you have no experience working in a automotive shop, the computer does not tell you what is wrong. In fact the computer will only give you an idea of where to look and to help you diagnose symptoms in the vehicle. Most cars give enough information for the average car owner to know what is wrong, like losing air pressure(tire light) or a engine code.

        That is like saying that instead of going to the doctor they should just give you the diagnosis for free using a thermometer and a x-ray and let you fix yourself......
        • 4 Years Ago
        To: Sea Urchin. Very Good point. It already stores the codes, but you need a scanner to read the codes. I bought a OB1 and OB2 2 scanner. Chrysler has or had a system that would read codes by flashing the engine light so many times, to give codes, but you will need a code book to tell you what the number of flashes ment. So if Ford can build SYNC, why not include a feature that would tell the owner what the problem is.... If you take it to a service shop it will cost you, and then you are not sure the results are right, which could cost you even more money. Come on car makers,,, why not do it. Thanks Sea Urchin.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I totally agree, but i see two problems in your theory SU.

        One, the computer doesn't know why your engine is running lean, it just knows that it is. Could be an injector, maybe the fuel filter, leak in the line, bad fuel pump...

        Two, yes you are correct, many engine issues can easily be fixed by the owner with basic tools and common sense. However, there are profits to be made in the service of your vehicle, and never discount the knowledge of a good mechanic. Yes, you anyone can replace their brake pads, but will everyone examine the entire brake system to make sure it is functioning properly?
        • 4 Years Ago

        Go to Autozone they will scan codes for free....
      • 4 Years Ago
      Very cool.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I have a 2011 Mustang. I love the car, but the Sync system sucks big time. I have never gotten it to work and most of the people I have talked to also have the same problems. Even one of the workers at the dealership can't get it to work.